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Showing posts from July, 2018

Long Beach State's DeFalco Double-Trouble (Hitting and Digging) For UCLA in NCAA Men's Final

In reflecting on Long Beach State's five-game win (25-19, 23-25, 20-25, 26-24, 15-12) over UCLA back in May for the NCAA men's championship, there seemed to be a few possible angles to pursue.

One was the re-emergence of California schools -- which had been completely absent from the last three NCAA title matches and had last hoisted the trophy in 2013 (UC Irvine) -- as championship combatants.   

A second possible angle was UCLA's aggressive serving, which led to four straight service errors at a crucial point in Game 4 (at 20-20, 21-21, 22-22, and 23-23). I wrote about the Bruins' serving dilemma back in 2016 and it evidently is not something they have yet solved.

To me, however, it was the two-way performance of 49ers' outside-hitter TJ DeFalco, whose hitting and digging were indispensable to his team's success. DeFalco hit .419 (18 kills and 5 errors on 31 hitting attempts) and led his team with 12 digs.

A method for putting a player's dig total into p…