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No. 1 Long Beach State men’s volleyball sweeps Mount Olive

Long Beach sets program record at 17-0.

The+Long+Beach+State+men%27s+volleyball+team+celebrates+its+historic+win+over+Mount+Olive.+The+49ers+are+the+first+team+in+school+history+to+start+17-0.
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No. 1 Long Beach State men’s volleyball sweeps Mount Olive

The Long Beach State men's volleyball team celebrates its historic win over Mount Olive. The 49ers are the first team in school history to start 17-0.

The Long Beach State men's volleyball team celebrates its historic win over Mount Olive. The 49ers are the first team in school history to start 17-0.

Sabrina Flores | Daily 49er

The Long Beach State men's volleyball team celebrates its historic win over Mount Olive. The 49ers are the first team in school history to start 17-0.

Sabrina Flores | Daily 49er

Sabrina Flores | Daily 49er

The Long Beach State men's volleyball team celebrates its historic win over Mount Olive. The 49ers are the first team in school history to start 17-0.

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The Long Beach State men’s volleyball team etched its own mark into the program’s history Wednesday night by becoming the first team ever to start 17-0.

“I think it’s a testament to what we are doing in practice an coming into every match like it’s not something special,” junior outside hitter Louis Richard said.

Long Beach (17-0, 2-0 Big West) were visited by Mount Olive (10-5, 7-2 Conference of Carolinas) a division II program. This would provide an opportunity for the 49ers to give some key contributors some rest and allow some unlikely faces to see the court with 14 different 49ers seeing action in the match.

“We were able to start some guys that normally don’t get out there and start for us, and I thought they did a great job,” head coach Alan Knipe said.

Among the new faces to see the floor, Louis Richard made the biggest impact going for a career high seven kills, four digs and three blocks on the night.

“I think having a new career high is good for me it’s good for the team,” Richards said. “Being comfortable playing the brand of volleyball we play. Being confident that I know the system and that I can lean on my teammates for them to back me up it makes it easier for all of us to go out there and perform.”

The out of the normal lineup had the 49ers down in the first set trailing 11-9 due to multiple miscommunications between Long Beach players, leading to five service errors and three attacking errors in the set.

“There’s a lot of verbal communication and nonverbal communication that happens on the volleyball court and it gets better the more a unit plays together,” Knipe said.

The 49ers would make short work of the next two sets and finish the historic night in typical fashion by completing a three game sweep 25-18 25-16 25-14.

Long Beach was led by the duo of Richards and Junior outside hitter TJ DeFalco. DeFalco would end the night with a match high 12 kills (.611), three assists, three digs and a block.

It was a family affair inside the Walter Pyramid as Long Beach State freshman outside hitter Ryan Poole would square off against his brother senior opposite hitter Robert Poole.

“It was nice to be on the opposite side and to get a couple swings at each other,” Poole said. “It was an emotional time having our parents in the stands. They have always supported us and that really brings it all together.”

Robert Poole would win the statline battle finishing with eight kills, four digs and a block. Ryan Poole would however get the last laugh as Long Beach won the match.

Long Beach will have eight days until its next match when they get back into conference play and take on UC Santa Barbara Thursday March 15th inside the Walter Pyramid at 7 p.m.

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