Long Beach State to play trio of challenging MIVA teams in 2022

Photo courtesy of Long Beach State athletics

Long Beach State will go through the MIVA gauntlet in non-conference play.

The Beach as part of unveiling Friday its 2022 schedule announced it will play consecutive matches in the opening month of the season against three of the top MIVA programs — Lewis, Loyola and Ohio State.

Both the Flyers and Ramblers concluded last season in the top 10 of the national rankings and played each other in the MIVA Tournament finals. The Buckeyes also were nationally ranked throughout the season and were in the top half of the conference standings entering the final week of the regular season.

Long Beach State ended 2021 at No. 8 in both the national coaches poll and national media poll as it reached the Big West Tournament semifinals.


The majority of starters are coming back for the Beach, including All-Big West outside attacker Spencer Olivier. Olivier was in the nation’s top 10 with a 4.02 kills per game average and had a combined 36 kills on a .435 attack percentage in two postseason matches.

Lewis swept Loyola in the 2021 conference finals to repeat as MIVA champions and advanced to the NCAA Tournament semifinals. Despite the Flyers losing All-American and All-MIVA starters to graduation, they still return All-American middle attacker Tyler Mitchem and All-American setter Kevin Kauling.

Loyola All-MIVA setter Garrett Zolg enters a redshirt senior year after finishing last year in the nation’s top 10 averaging both 10.18 assists per game and 0.45 aces per game. In addition, outside attacker Cole Schlothauer in 2021 led the Ramblers and was in the nation’s top 20 with a 3.81 kills per game average.

Ohio State finished last season in fifth place in the MIVA and lost in the conference tournament quarterfinals. Among the starters, though, returning for the Buckeyes features Freshman All-American outside attacker Sotiris Siapanis who was eighth in the nation with a 4.12 kills per game average on a .356 attack percentage last season.

Long Beach State will travel to Illinois to play Lewis on Jan. 21 and Loyola on Jan. 22 before returning home to face Ohio State the following week.

The Beach is 23-4 all-time against these three MIVA teams, including two road wins against Lewis and Loyola in 2018.

Ohio State is on a three-match losing steak to Long Beach State with its last win occurring in 2017, while Lewis has lost its two most recent meetings. Loyola is 0-5 all-time versus Long Beach State and has been swept in the last four matches.

2022 Long Beach State regular season

Jan. 12 vs. Erskine
Jan. 15 vs. Harvard
Jan. 21 at Lewis
Jan. 22 at Loyola
Jan. 28 vs. Ohio State
Jan. 29 vs. Penn State
Feb. 4 vs. USC
Feb. 11 vs. UCLA
Feb. 19 at UCLA
Feb. 25 vs. Stanford
March 4 vs. NJIT
March 5 vs. Mount Olive
March 10 at UC Irvine
March 11 vs. UC Irvine
March 18 vs. Concordia-Irvine
March 25 vs. UC Santa Barbara
March 26 at UC Santa Barbara
April 1 vs. Hawai’i
April 2 vs. Hawai’i
April 8 vs. UC San Diego
April 9 at UC San Diego
April 15 vs. CSUN
April 16 at CSUN