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Briefs: Davis red hot for UCSB

Former Corona del Mar volleyball player leads Gauchos to win over USC in NCAA final four.

May 05, 2011

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — UC Santa Barbara middle blocker Dylan Davis, a Corona del Mar High product, has led the Gauchos men's volleyball team to the brink of history.

Davis had a career-high 15 kills and set a tournament hitting record Thursday night as the No. 4-seeded Gauchos stunned top-seeded USC, 29-27, 24-26, 25-15, 25-18, in an NCAA Tournament semifinal at Penn State.

UC Santa Barbara will play Ohio State on Saturday in the NCAA championship match. The Gauchos (18-14) are seeking their first NCAA men's volleyball title in program history.

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Davis, a sophomore, set an NCAA tournament record Thursday by hitting .882 (15 kills in 17 attempts). The 15 kills tied him for the team lead with senior Cullen Irons. Davis also had two block assists in helping the Gauchos defeat USC for the second time in five days. UC Santa Barbara first upset USC in five sets in the final of the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Tournament on Saturday.

Another former CdM player, senior middle blocker Scott Slaughter, had seven kills Thursday night for UC Santa Barbara, which also includes reserve outside hitters Blaine and Weston Nielsen.

Ohio State defeated host Penn State in four sets in the other semifinal, 25-18, 24-26, 25-22, 25-23. The roster for the No. 3-seeded Buckeyes includes Orange Coast College product Mike Stewart, a middle blocker.

The NCAA championship match is scheduled for 4 p.m. PDT Saturday and will be shown on ESPN2.

— From staff reports

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DeMarzo to Iona

Costa Mesa High senior girls' water polo player Ashley DeMarzo has committed to Iona College in New York, Mustangs Coach Tim Postiff said.

DeMarzo was a Daily Pilot Dream Team selection as a senior for Costa Mesa. The three-year varsity player scored 44 goals, second on the team. She was a first-team All-Orange Coast League selection for the Mustangs (15-14), helping them advance to the CIF Southern Section Division I playoffs after missing them last year.

Iona College is a Division I program. The Gaels won the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference this year and are in a NCAA Division I Playoffs play-in game on Saturday.

— From staff reports

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Ross heads to USC

Sage Hill School senior running back Taylor Ross will be a preferred walk-on football player at USC, said Lightning Coach J.R. Tolver.

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