Shari Pandi and Kuuipolani Braceros each had big nights Saturday, but the UC Merced women's volleyball team didn't get enough contributions from the rest of the supporting cast to earn a victory.
After splitting a pair of games on the opening day of the UC Merced Holiday Inn Express Invitational, the Golden Bobcats were swept in straight sets by California State University San Marcos, the 20th ranked team in the NAIA, 25-20, 25-17, 25-19. Pandi had 21 kills in the loss and Braceros had 19.
UC Merced also lost to Northwest Christian 25-17, 25-22, 25-8 at Hostetler Court.
The 1-3 showing in its own tournament has to be a little disappointing for Allen McCreary's squad after it went 3-0 a season ago.
San Marcos won the title, going a perfect 4-0 in the round-robin format. Genna Garrett has 48 assists in the two losses, while Valeria Martinez chipped in nine kills and 22 digs.
SAN FRANCISCO The UC Merced men's cross country team opened its season with a third-place showing in the non-Division 1 teams division at the University of San Francisco Invitational. Junior Daniel Pena set the pace for the Bobcats, placing 16th with a time of 27 minutes, 27 seconds. Sofia Rios had a nice showing for the UCM women, placing third in the small-school race with a time of 20:05.6.
SEATTLE After a solid showing in the NFL preseason, former Merced College linebacker John Lotulelei was named to the Seattle Seahawks' 53-man roster. Lotuelei is the first Blue Devil to play in the NFL since Reuben Droughns. He's expected to be a backup outside linebacker and play on special teams.