Cal State Fullerton volleyball travels to UC Irvine and UC Davis with chances for first Big West conference win

In Sports, Women's Volleyball
Haley Carmo swinging
(Joshua Arief Halim / Daily Titan)

Cal State Fullerton volleyball will travel to UC Irvine on Thursday and UC Davis on Saturday for two chances to earn its first win in Big West conference play this season.

The Titans (6-12, 0-5) fell in three sets to UC Riverside on Oct. 6, giving Riverside its first conference victory of the season. Fullerton lost the match by a total of eight points.

Since the start of Big West play, CSUF has not won a single set. The average margin of defeat per set is 7.13 with the largest loss, 25-10, delivered by undefeated No. 12 Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, according to NCAA rankings.

No CSUF player ranks in the top five of any statistical category in the conference. Outside hitter Maddie Schneider ranks sixth in total kills (199) and kills per set (3.43).

The UC Irvine Anteaters (10-7, 4-1) have won their last three conference games, dropping only one set to Long Beach State. Senior middle blocker Idara Akpakpa earned Big West Defensive Player of the Week this week after recording six blocks against UC Davis and Cal State Northridge over the weekend.

Akpakpa ranks second in the conference in blocks per set with 1.10. Outside hitter Haley DeSales owns the second-most digs in the Big West (289).

The Anteaters are 3-4 at home this season. They lost to Cal State Bakersfield in five sets on Aug. 31. Bakersfield swept the Titans on Sept. 25.

Of the three shared Big West conference opponents so far — UC Santa Barbara, Hawaii and Cal State Northridge — Irvine beat Santa Barbara on the road and swept Northridge.

In the Bren Events Center on Sept. 28, the Anteaters swept the UC Davis Aggies by an average of 12.3 points.

Davis’ (9-9, 1-5) sole conference victory came in five sets at UC Santa Barbara on Sept. 29. Outside hitter Emily Allen, who averages the fifth-most kills in conference (3.87), recorded 29 kills in that match.

Outside of that match, the Aggies have won only three Big West sets.

Thursday’s game starts at 7 p.m. in the Bren Events Center. Saturday’s contest will begin at 1 p.m. in The Pavilion.

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