THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. - On the last day of the Second Annual Cal Lu Fornia Invitational, the Cal Lutheran men's volleyball team swept past Regis (Mass.) 3-0 (25-18, 25-20, 25-19) inside Gilbert Arena on Saturday afternoon. With the win, the Kingsmen conclude a strong showing as tournament hosts, winning two out of three matches in two days.
Midway through the first set, CLU held a slight 12-10 lead, before a Mason Mercer kill sparked a 7-0 run with Kristian Gallardo back to serve. For the second straight day, Gallardo was excellent from behind the service line, tallying two aces, while keeping the Pride guessing all match long. With a 19-10 advantage, the Kingsmen held off a late Regis rally to take a one set lead.
In the second set, the Violet and Gold combined for 17 kills on a .324 hitting percentage paced by five kills from Patrick Rowe and four from Nick Shoemate. CLU jumped out to a quick 12-6 lead and never looked back, holding nearly a six-point lead throughout the entire set.
The Kingsmen increased their efficiency in the third set, hitting .520 with 16 kills and just three errors on 25 total attacks, to clinch the sweep. Rowe added another five kills in the third set alone while Mercer also recorded five kills on nine attempts. Gallardo and Michael Campbell each recorded two total blocks apiece to stymie any Pride offensive attack.
Rowe finished with a game-high 13 kills while Mercer tied his career-high of 12 kills that he set yesterday. Shoemate finished with 34 assists, five kills, three blocks and three digs in a strong all-around game while Jamal Balkhi tied game-high honors with six digs. Justin Dietrich and Campbell led the way with four total blocks apiece.
Sean Bisnett and Marcos Aguirre led Regis with eight kills apiece.
Cal Lutheran (5-14) hits the road for its next match at Hope International on Tuesday, Mar. 14 at 7:00 p.m.
Box Score: CLU 3, RC 0
Tournament Central: Second Annual Cal Lu Fornia Invitational
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