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Pepperdine Parries Dons' Upset Hopes in Sweep

Oct. 12, 2006

MALIBU, Calif. - The Pepperdine women's volleyball team improved its home-winning streak over San Francisco to 22 Thursday night with a 30-27, 30-18, 30-22 sweep of the Dons in West Coast Conference (WCC) action at Firestone Fieldhouse.

Pepperdine (7-9, 3-2 WCC) had several standout performances on the evening, led by sophomore Julie Rubenstein's (Camarillo, Calif.) 15-kill, nine-dig, six-block performance. Freshman Rachel Lumsden (Brea, Calif.) equaled Rubenstein's match-leading 15 kills and added four service aces and 12 digs for her team-leading seventh double-double of the season. Sophia Milo (Portland, Ore.) chipped in 10 kills and five blocks for the Waves who held a 13.0-9.5 edge in blocks, while Cassi Chamberlain (Lakewood, Calif.) hit .471 with nine kills and four blocks. Kiah Fiers (Palos Verdes Estates, Calif.) narrowly missed a triple-double with 48 assists, 13 digs and seven kills.

San Francisco (16-5, 0-4 WCC) was led by Carly Babin and Anna Berger's six kills, while three others chipped in with five. As a team, the Dons were held to .088 hitting, including .038 in game two.

"I really feel like our middle blockers got us going tonight," commented Pepperdine head coach Nina Matthies. "Rachel was on fire in game one and Julie caught on in game two. We served tough tonight and got them out of system which was also key."

Game one was a see-saw battle with the Dons getting out to a 5-2 lead only to see the Waves move ahead 8-7 after a 6-2 run. USF would go ahead by as many as three, 15-12, before the third of Lumsden's eight kills in the game fueled an 8-3 run. San Francisco managed to tie the game at 24-24 before a Chamberlain kill and consecutive blocks by Lumsden and Chamberlain put Pepperdine on top for good, 27-24.

Pepperdine sprinted out to a commanding 8-4 lead in game two as Rubenstein became a one-person wrecking crew. The sophomore recorded seven kills on seven attempts, five digs, three solo blocks and an ace during the frame. The Waves never let up in taking a 2-0 lead in the match, hitting at a .533 clip with 21 kills.

San Francisco led briefly in game three, but consecutive Pepperdine blocks started a 12-5 run as the Waves opened a four-point 15-11 lead. USF pulled within three following a timeout, but it would be as close as the Dons would get the remainder of the night.

The Waves will look to improve to 4-0 at home in conference play Saturday afternoon when they host Saint Mary's at 1 p.m. (PDT).