(Hawaii Athletics) - The University of Hawai'i men's volleyball team barely broke a sweat in a dominant straight-set win over Conference Carolina's Lees-McRae Thursday on the first day of the Waikiki Beachcomber by Outrigger Classic at the Stan Sheriff Center. Set scores were 25-11, 25-11, 25-18.
The Rainbow Warriors (8-1) used 17 players and substituted freely in the first-ever meeting against the Division II program from Banner Elk, N.C. UH improved to 4-0 all-time versus teams from Conference Carolinas.
UH hit .418 for the match and served eight aces while limiting the LMC to -.016 hitting. Sophomore outside hitter Austin Matautia led the Warriors with 10 kills hitting .562 while sophomore opposite Brandon Rattray added eight kills, four aces and two blocks.
Robert Bowling and Wes Rogman each had five kills to lead the Bobcats (1-7).
With UH leading 13-9 in Set 1, the Warriors closed out the from on a 12-2 run. The Warriors hit .500 in the frame and Rado Parapunov served two aces during the run. UH limited LMC to -.111 hitting.
Head coach Charlie Wade made wholesale changes in Set 2 as freshman setter Jayce Ashment made his first career appearance. Opposite Brandon Rattray served three of his four aces in the set during a 6-0 run that gave UH a 10-3 lead. Matautia led the team with five kills.
In Set 3, redshirt freshman middle blocker Isaac Liva saw his first action and posted his first career kill. The Bobcats hung tough, holding a 10-8 lead until UH freshman setter Jackson Van Eekeren went back to serve during a 9-0 run and the Warriors never looked back.
In the tournament's opening match, Academy United defeated Canada's Thompson Rivers 25-19, 25-21, 25-16. Former Warrior Nemanja Komar had nine kills and four aces in the victory while Peter Edwards added nine kills and five aces.
UH will meet Academy United, a professional team competing in the National Volleyball Association, Friday at 7:00 p.m., on the second day of the Waikiki Beachcomber by Outrigger Classic.