Mason Set to Host Uvaldo Acosta Invitational
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Mason Set to Host Uvaldo Acosta Invitational

WHEN: January 11, 2018 and January 12, 2018
WHERE: Recreation Athletic Complex
OPPONENTS: No. 3 UC Irvine, Erskine and Princeton
STATS FOR SATURDAY MATCHES: to access stats, use password: media2019
LIVE VIDEO: Match 1 | Match 2 | Match 3 | Match 4
TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE | TICKETS

FAIRFAX, Va. – The George Mason men's volleyball team is set to host the Uvaldo Acosta Invitational on Jan. 11-12 at the Recreation Athletic Complex (RAC). Mason will welcome No. 3 UC Irvine, Princeton and Erskine for a four-match, two-day tournament.
 
The weekend of competition opens with a match between Princeton and UC Irvine at 5 p.m. on Friday, followed by Mason's first match of the tournament against Erskine at 7:30 p.m. at the RAC.
 
On Saturday, Princeton opens the day of play with Erskine at 5 p.m., followed by the marquee matchup between the Patriots and the UC Irvine 'Eaters at 7:30 p.m. Mason and EIVA foe Princeton will not face each other.
 
All matches will be streamed by Patriot Vision. For further details on the tournament, click here.
 
ACOSTA LEGACY
Uvaldo Acosta was a three-time All-American for the Patriots and led George Mason to the 1988 NCAA Final Four. He was a member of the U.S. National team from 1989-1992. After his playing career, Acosta took over the helm of the George Mason program and in his second year as coach he tragically drowned during a trip to Hawaii with his team at the age of 32. The EIVA Player of the Year award is named after Acosta and each year Mason holds the Uvaldo Acosta Memorial Invitational to honor its alumnus and coach.
 
ACE OF THE NATION
Junior Sam Greenslade had the quite the opening weekend of play, averaging 2.14 kills per set on a .303 hitting percentage. Greenslade dominated behind the service line, tallying a career-high six services aces vs. Barton (Jan. 5). He is averaging 1.143 service aces per set to lead the country and also leads the nation with six service aces in a four-set match.

WAGNER PICKS UP WHERE HE LEFT OFF
After a breakout sophomore season, junior Hayden Wagner is picking up right where he left off to start 2019. In two matches, the opposite hitter leads the team in kills per set (3.43) and points per set (4.79). He rounded up opening weekend second on the squad in blocks per set (1.29) on nine total blocks with two solo. 
 
RECEIVING VOTES
For the second week in a row, the Patriots are receiving votes in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Poll. Mason tabbed nine votes to rank just outside the top-15.
 
LAST TIME OUT
Mason opened the 2019 season 2-0 with wins over Queens (Jan. 4) and Barton (Jan. 5). The Patriots won its season opener via sweep for the third straight year. Through the first weekend of the season, Mason is leading the nation in opponent hitting percentage, holding its competition to a .007 clip.
 
SCOUTING THE OPPONENTS
No. 3 UC Irvine Anteaters: 3-0, 0-0 Big West
UC Irvine is ranked third in the AVCA poll and, along with Mason, remains one of nine teams still unbeaten in the country. The 'Eaters most recent win came against Ball State on Jan. 7 in Muncie, Ind.
 
The 'Eaters are led by sophomore Joel Schniedmiller and senior David Parker. After posting 4.92 kills per set and 5.54 points per set last week, Schniedmiller earned Big West Player of the Week honors. On the defensive end, Parker leads the nation in digs per set (3.08).
 
UC Irvine leads the all-time series 7-2. The Patriots most recently fell 3-0 to the 'Eaters last season in Irvine, Calif. This will be the first time Mason faces a ranked opponent this season.
 
Erskine Flying Fleet: 0-1, 0-0 Conference Carolinas
Erskine, a member of the Conference Carolinas, has only played one match this season, resulting in a 3-0 loss to Life University on Jan. 8. Freshman Lancy Aldebol led all Erskine hitters with seven kills while freshman Francisco Pomar dished out 26 assists in the season opener loss.
 
This will be the first meeting between the two teams.
 
Princeton Tigers: 0-4, 0-0 EIVA
Fellow EIVA member Princeton (0-4) has yet to earn its first victory of the season, suffering road losses to AVCA ranked opponents (#6 Pepperdine, #2 UCLA, #14 Ball State and #13 Purdue Fort Wayne). The Tigers were selected to finish first in the EIVA Preseason Poll after receiving 56 points and two first place votes.
 
Junior Parker Dixon will look to lead the Tigers to its first victory of the season this weekend. The outside hitter was named EIVA Offensive Player of the Week after averaging 4.00 kills per set on a .286 hitting percentage.
 
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