Sept. 27, 2007
Moraga, CA - In the first WCC action of the year, women's volleyball defeated Gonzaga in three games, 33-31, 30-15, 30-25. The Gaels posted 21 blocks in the three game sweep over the Bulldogs, while Gonzaga recorded four in the match. Freshman Shannon Lowell led the way for the Gaels, tallying a career-high 10 blocks, while also adding seven kills. Megan Burton joined Lowell's block party, posting nine blocks.
In game one both teams battled back and forth, recording eight ties before either team reached 12. A serving run by junior Taylor Groess gave the Gaels a 16-12 advantage. Groess tallied one serving ace in the run, while Jaeckel and York each added a kill. Saint Mary's would continue to push, extending the lead to 20-13 off a Barker kill. Gonzaga would turn-up the heat late in the game, decreasing the lead to 22-20. From that point on each team would not let up, exchanging points back and forth. The Gaels would reach 29 first, but the Bulldogs kept the pressure on, forcing the game to continue into the 30's. Saint Mary's remained composed, putting together two consecutive points off a York kill and Bulldog ball handling error. The Gaels prevailed in the end, defeating Gonzaga 33-31. Lowell continued her consistent attacking throughout game one, posting three kills on six swings for a .500 hitting efficiency. Groess added four blocks in the game, while Burton and Lowell each added three.
The Gaels continued their stellar blocking in game two, posting seven blocks to the Bulldogs one. Burton ignited in the game, tallying three kills and five blocks. Freshman setter Christy Payne guided Saint Mary's to .310 hitting efficiency in the game, while also dishing out ten assists. Saint Mary's snatched the lead from the Bulldogs at the start of game one, taking a 10-5 advantage and never looking back. Junior Erin Thompson found a rhythm at the serving line, leading the Gaels in a five point run. The Gaels' tough serving kept the pressure on Gonzaga throughout the match; tallying three aces to the Bulldogs zero in game two alone. Payne stepped up to the line late in game two, tabbing two aces in four attempts. The Gaels would dominate the rest of the way, winning the game 30-15.
Saint Mary's carried their momentum into game three, as Groess exploded for six kills on 11 swings for .364 hitting percentage. Freshman Megan York scooped up six digs in the game, while also recording five kills and two blocks. Payne continued to lead the Gaels' offense, posting 16 assists, one blocks, and two digs. Saint Mary's finished off the Bulldogs in three games, winning the third set 30-25.
The Gaels return to action Saturday afternoon, when they face Portland in a 1:00 PM matinee.