By Stephen Tsai
Because of a scheduling quirk and the addition of California Baptist as the MPSF's 13th member, the volleyball Warriors will have their annual team banquet tomorrow night as part of the alumni weekend festivities.
And because of a scheduling quirk and the addition of CBU, the Warriors still remain in contention for the final berth in the eight-team MPSF playoffs. They are 8-14 in the MPSF with two road matches remaining against UC San Diego next week.
The Warriors would be in 10th place except CBU is on trial-run status and not eligible for the postseason until next year. That leaves the Warriors and Cal State Northridge (9-12) fighting for the eighth spot. The Matadors won both matches between the teams, so they have the advantage if they finish with the same regular-season record. The Matadors just need to win one of their remaining three matches. That actually was the scenario a week ago, too. Since then, the Matadors lost to Pacific and Pepperdine. Their final three matches are all on the road against good teams (USC, UC Irvine and Long Beach State).
The odds remain against the Warriors. They need to sweep UC San Diego and hope Northridge doesn't win again. But the Warriors still are alive despite having the league's most inexperienced starting lineup. To make the playoffs would be a boost to Charlie Wade, who has a year remaining on his five-year contract.
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It's easy to be impressed with the unknown, which is why there is much anticipation about the incoming recruiting class. But there are some players already on campus who have been doing well in the first five practices of this spring training, such as:
• Sean Shigematsu, who has rebounded from injuries to move ahead at right tackle.
• Safety/nickelback Ryan Pasoquen, who missed the 2012 season because of a knee injury.
• Nose tackle Mike Andrade, a Big Island paniolo who has been practicing with the first-team defense.
• Joshua Donovan, who has been getting significant reps at safety.
• Duke Bukoski, a tough receiver who always seems to make plays.
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For his birthday, our friend Jon Nielsen visited the Doctor.
Speaking of which, here are my favorite docs: