Brigham Young claims first NCAA Championship
May 9, 1999 - Brigham Young avenged its only loss of the season and claimed its first men's volleyball championship title against Long Beach State May 8 in Los Angeles.
The top-ranked Cougars made quick work of the No. 2 49ers, winning the match in three games, 15-9, 15-7, 15-10. It was Brigham Young's first tournament appearance, and the Cougars are only the second non-California team to claim the title.
The Cougars won the first two games with ease before finding themselves down 7-0 in the third game. Brigham Young staged a comeback to tie the score at seven and the game tetered back to a 10-7 lead for Long Beach State.
A service ace by Mac Wilson and a block by Rich Lambourne and Ryan Millar gave the Cougars a tie at 10. Brigham Young took the lead that would never be relinquished on a kill from Millar. Match point was won on a kill from the tournament's most outstanding player, Ossie Antonetti, who finished with a match-high 22 kills.
Brigham Young's blocking made the difference in the match as the championship squad finished with 23.5 blocks over its opponent's 11.5. The 49ers hit .156 for the match and .000 in the second game.
Brigham Young earned its shot for the title and the chance to avenge its March 19 loss to the 49ers by defeating Penn State in the semifinals, 10-15, 15-4, 15-11, 15-5, May 6 at UCLA. Antonetti led the way for the Cougars with 24 kills and 14 digs, while the Nittany Lions, the only other non-California team to win the championship, struggled with 20 serving errors.
Indiana/Purdue-Fort Wayne faced off against Long Beach State in the second semifinal match. The Mastodons forced the match to five games before succumbing to the 49ers, 15-11, 10-15, 8-15, 15-2, 15-13.
May 6 and 8, 1999 Pauley Pavilion UCLA Los Angeles, Calif UCLA Campus Map (UCLA)
Ticket Information (310) 825-1946 UCLA Central Ticket Office (310) 825-2101
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