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Volleyball Loses First Five Game Match of Season

Sept. 13, 2007

Moraga, Ca - The Saint Mary's women's volleyball could not hang on to the lead, falling to UC Santa Barbara in five games, 30-26, 30-26, 28-30, 27-30, 12-15. Freshman outside hitter Megan York's efforts would not be enough to defeat the Gauchos, as she tallied a career high, 26 kills, while also adding 17 digs, for her sixth double-double of the season. Joining York was junior outside hitter Taylor Groess, posting 20 kills in the match. The Gauchos were led by Lauren McLaughlin with 23 kills and 20 digs on the night.

The Gaels opened game one on top, with Huston, Jaeckel, and Lowell all serving for consecutive points. Lowell would serve three straight points, giving the Gaels a 7-4 advantage over the Gauchos. Saint Mary's would keep the momentum for the rest of the game, never handing over the lead to the Gauchos. The Gaels would win 30-26. York chipped in six kills, and Burton and Groess each added four. The offense was led by Freshman Kapua Kamana'o, tallying 17 assists and leading her team to a .324 hitting efficiency. McLaughlin provided four kills and six digs for the Gauchos.

In game two the Gaels took another quick lead, exploding for a 7-2 run. The Gauchos would crawl their way back into the game, taking advantage of McLaughlin and Quirarte kills. The Gauchos tied the game at 13 apiece, but the Gaels would not let down. Both teams would exchange points back and forth, until a Gonzalez serving run late in the game, would give Saint Mary's the lead. The Gaels would score off a Groess kill and Gonzalez ace putting the Gaels up 28-26. A Gaucho error would end the game, as the Gaels went on to win 30-26. Sophomore Lauren Jaeckel ignited in game two for the Gaels, posting four kills on four swings with a perfect hitting percentage. Middle blocker Shannon Lowell also hit for high efficiency, recording four kill on six swings.

After the break the Gauchos came out hot, taking the lead from the start, but the Gaels fought back to tie the game and take back the advantage at 6-5. Saint Mary's would continue to play hard, pushing ahead and taking the largest lead of the game at 21-17. From that point on the Gauchos took over the game, led by McLaughlin on the outside. Consecutive kills by McLaughlin and Quirarte would put the Gauchos down one, forcing Browning into his first timeout, at 22-21. UC Santa Barbara would continue to put the pressure on the Gaels, defeating the Gaels 28-30.

Both teams battled throughout game four, with 18 ties and 10 lead changes. McLaughlin and Saraceno continued their hot streak for the Gauchos, tallying six and four kills respectively. The Gaels were led by Groess with six kills, and Burton with three. The Gauchos would go on to defeat the Gaels, 27-30 in the game.

In the fifth and final game of the match both teams came out ready to compete. Much like the fourth game, both teams exchanged points back and forth, with no team leading by more than three points. The Gaels would reach eight first, leading to a side change, off a York kill. At 12-10 Gaels, Santa Barbara would go on a five point run off two Gaucho kills and three Gael errors. The run would lead the Gauchos to a 12-15 defeat over the Gaels.

Saint Mary's continues play Friday September 14 at 7:00 P.M. versus UC Davis.