Senior setter Connor Walbecht delivered one of the biggest performances of his college career in helping UC San Diego pull off one of its biggest victories in recent history.
The first-year setter guided the offense to a .360 attack percentage as UC San Diego swept No. 3/3 UCLA 25-22, 25-17, 25-21 on Friday in La Jolla, California.
This is the first time since 2012 that the Tritons have defeated the Bruins and the seventh time they have beaten West Coast historical powerhouse in the program’s 32-year history. It also was the first time in seven years that UC San Diego defeated a top-five nationally ranked team.
Walbecht along with his offensive performance had eight digs and two blocks to help limit UCLA to a .179 attack percentage.
The Tritons had five starters finish with more than a .300 attack percentage and two players with double-digit kills. Outside attacker Kyle McCauley had a team-high 13 kills, while outside attacker Wyatt Harrison contributed 11 kills on a .357 attack percentage and two aces.
UCLA outside attacker Austin Matautia in the loss had a team-high 10 kills on a .474 attack percentage. Matautia was the only Bruin to have more than five kills.
UCLA was without Preseason All-American middle attacker Daenan Gyimah for this non-conference road match.
This is the second time in consecutive weeks that the Tritons have upset a nationally ranked team. UC San Diego opened its season with a five-game victory against then-No. 11 Loyola.