Irvine volleyball's Asuka home to play against UH
By Leila Wai
Advertiser Staff Writer
By Leila Wai
UC Irvine freshman libero Brent Asuka makes his Hawai'i collegiate debut tonight when the No. 4 Anteaters travel to Honolulu to play the University of Hawai'i in a pair of matches this week.
"It's gonna be exciting, nervous, everything," Asuka said. "I've always wanted to play here, in front of the crowd. I grew up watching them."
Asuka, an Iolani graduate, leads the team with 2.4 digs per game, playing in 25 of 26 games this season.
"Coach said I had a chance, but I had to work hard," said Asuka, who broke into the starting lineup at fall camp. "I guess it paid off."
He had 19 digs in a 26-30, 31-29, 30-27, 30-18 loss to Pepperdine on Friday. It was the fourth-highest total for a match in UC Irvine history and the second-highest in the country this season.
Asuka chose UC Irvine because, "coaches were good, the team was good, and coming to Hawai'i was a plus, too."
He played with Hawai'i setter Sean Carney, helping the Raiders to their first state title in 2003.
The Anteaters arrived yesterday afternoon and depart Sunday, leaving Saturday free to do as they please. Asuka plans on going to the beach, and visiting family and friends.
UC Irvine and Hawai'i play tonight and Friday at 7 p.m. at the Stan Sheriff Center.
Also, in the Pepperdine win over UC Irvine, Iolani alum Jon Grobe, a junior outside hitter for the Waves, had 14 kills, hitting .344, and added 12 digs and five blocks.
Nagata won the 100 backstroke (56.64), 50 freestyle (24.18) and 100 butterfly (56.86).
She won the 100 breaststroke (1:05.16), 200 breaststroke (2:21.31) and 500 freestyle (5:06.02).
Senior Ashley Rose (Kealakehe '02 of Kailua, Kona) finished second in the 50 freestyle (24.44) and 200 backstroke (2:13.97).
She came off the bench to lead all players with 17 points, and added eight rebounds and four assists in a 70-24 victory against California Maritime on Jan. 10. Two days later, against Pacific Union, she scored 17 in a 69-14 victory. This is her first weekly honor.
TRACK AND FIELD
She beat Allysa Detroy, 6-2, 6-2, and teamed with Morgan Ungerott to defeat Detroy and Kate Mellion, 8-6.
Galon lost both her matches the following day against Michigan, falling to Christine Bader, 6-2, 6-3, and teaming with Ungerott in an 8-2 loss to Bader and Sarah Andrews, 8-2.
Reach Leila Wai at email@example.com.