Pepperdine 3, Gonzaga 2
The Gonzaga University volleyball team nearly shocked the volleyball world on Friday night as the underdog Bulldogs (3-18, 0-5) fell just five points short of upsetting No. 6 Pepperdine University in West Coast Conference volleyball action at Martin Centre. The Waves (14-2, 4-0 WCC) broke away from ties in game four and five to defeat GU, 30-32, 30-17, 25-30, 30-28, 15-12 to win their 32nd straight WCC match and their 13th straight over the Bulldogs.
In game number one Gonzaga held two-time WCC Player of the Year Katie Wilkins to just one kill as the Bulldogs collected 15 kills in the 32-30 win. With the scored tied at 28, Gonzaga twice pulled away to game point before finally putting the game away with a Christina Davis kill. Four GU players had four kills including Davis.
In the second game the Waves offense got on track on they hammered down 15 kills with Wilkins leading the way with seven in the game. Gonzaga was prone to attack errors as they registered a negative .044 attack percentage in the second game while Pepperdine clicked for a .256 mark.
Gonzaga found an offensive rhythm in the third game as setter Emilee Gihring repeatedly fed the ball to senior middle blocker Abby Cullen. Cullen would get seven of her match-high 23 kills during the third game while Gihring passed out 12 assists in the win. The Bulldogs hit .304 in that match to pull ahead two games to one. Gihring would finish the match with 54 assists. Waves setter Melissa Mehlhorn had 67.
The four-game went back and forth with the two teams battling to a 28-28 tie. Waves senior Lyndsey Hache' then took the game into her own hands as she contributed to an assisted block to put Pepperdine up 29-28 and then hammered down the game winner to send the match to a decisive game five. Pepperdine connected for a match-best .356 attack clip while Gonzaga finished the game at .304.
In the final game Pepperdine erupted to a 8-4 lead before Gonzaga was able to battle back and tie the match behind four straight service points by Lauren Armas. The two teams traded points with the Bulldogs taking a 12-11 lead. Pepperdine rolled off four straight points to pick up the win with Katy Daly getting back-to-back kills to close out the Bulldogs upset bid.
Heather Signor etched her name in the Gonzaga record book with a match-high 28 digs as six Gonzaga players reached double figures with Gonzaga finishing with 104 team digs. The 28 digs were the fifth best single-match effort in Gonzaga history. Christina Davis finished with 18 digs behind Signor. Christina Hinds had 24 digs for Pepperdine with Melissa Mehlhorn adding 21 digs towards Pepperdine's total of 94.
Cullen led all players with 23 kills won 49 attacks with a .327 attack percentage. Davis had 18 kills and Lauren Armas 15 for Gonzaga as the Bulldogs pushed Pepperdine to more than three games for the first time since 1998 when the Waves knocked off GU in four.
Breegan Mulligan had a quiet 19 kills to lead Pepperdine while Katie Wilkins added 18. Lyndsey Hache' collected a double-double for Pepperdine with 13 kills and 13 blocks, 12 of them assisted. Abby Cullen was the Bulldogs top blocker with nine blocks, eight assisted.
LMU 3, Portland 0
The University of Portland volleyball team continued its losing skid tonight with a 3-0 (30-22, 30-20, 30-17) loss to No. 19 ranked Loyola Marymount at the Chiles Center. The Pilots fall to 10-9 on the season, 0-5 in WCC play, while the Lions improve to 18-3 overall, 3-1 in the WCC.
Portland hit for .082 in game one, recording 13 kills, while LMU hit for .286 with 16 kills for a 30-22 win. The nationally ranked Lions continued to improve throughout the match, hitting for .385 in game two and .469 in game three. The Pilots struggled defensively and LMU out-dug Portland, 49 to 36 with 15.5 total team blocks. The Lions easily recorded wins in games two and three for the match.
Sara Vercruyssen led the team with 16 kills, a .257 hitting percentage and nine digs. Heather Denison added 12 kills, while Sheena Surplus dished out 35 assists. For the match, Portland hit for .123 and tallied 4.0 total team blocks.
Three players recorded double-figure kills for the Lions. Kealani Kimball totaled 14 kills and hit for .414 on the night with 10 digs. Kelli Nerison tallied 12 kills, while Dina DeBernardi chipped in 11 kills. DeBernardi had six block assists on the night, and Tiana Newsome racked up seven blocks. Nicole Oehlman posted 43 assists for the Lions.
San Diego 3, Saint Mary's 1
In front of hundreds of screaming Girl Scouts at the Jenny Craig Pavilion on Friday night San Diego freshman Ryan Maspero came off the bench to lead the 17th ranked Toreros over visiting St. Mary??s 3-1. With the match even at one game apiece, Maspero??s seven kills in game three allowed USD its 15th consecutive home victory over the Gaels. Individual game scores went (30-25, 20-30, 30-17, 30-27).
St. Mary??s (15-7; 2-3 WCC) responded from an early one-game deficit with a convincing 30-20 victory in game two. Senior Jill Parmele led the Gaels with a match-high 22 kills. In a fiercely contested fourth game San Diego (14-4; 3- 1 WCC) reclaimed the momentum and eventually the match thanks to an outstanding effort a trio of newcomers.
Maspero, along with fellow freshmen Christie Dawson and Emily Haas, posted double-digit numbers in kills for the Toreros on Friday. Complementing Maspero??s 12 kills was a .545 attack percentage from Haas. In all, Haas killed 13 while committing just one error. Dawson put down the match-clinching point, giving her 14 kills and a .360 hitting percentage.
USD junior attacker Devon Forster killed a team-high 16 and sophomore setter Lindsey Sherburne handed out a match-best 67 assists. Torero junior Kristen Hurst continued her stellar play with 15 kills and three blocks.
Santa Clara 3, San Francisco 0