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WCC Women's Volleyball Recaps

Oct. 20, 2007

Saint Mary's - 3
Pepperdine - 2

Moraga, CA - The Saint Mary's volleyball team came out strong Saturday afternoon, defeating the Pepperdine Waves in five games, 30-23, 23-30, 24-30, 30-24, 17-15. The Gaels were once again led by freshman Megan York, posting a career and game-high 28 kills. The Texas native also added 17 digs and three blocks in the five-game thriller. Junior Taylor Groess provided a huge boost for the Gaels in the game, tallying 18 kills and four blocks from the outside hitter and middle blocker position. Kapua Kamana'o took steady control over the Gaels offense, dishing out 68 assists. The Waves were led by middle blocker Lecca Roberts with 17 kills and five blocks.

In game one both teams battled evenly from the start. The score was tied five times before either team reached 10, with no team leading by more than three points. The Gaels would gain momentum off of Nikki Gonzales serve, scoring five consecutive points. Gonzales tallied one ace in the run, while York added four kills. With a 22-18 lead in hand, Saint Mary's continued to keep pressure on the Waves. Kelly Huston and Nikki Gonzales recorded two aces apiece in the game, while York and Lowell tabbed eight and four kills respectively. Sophomore Alita Fisher led the way defensively, scooping up nine digs in the game. The Gaels hit for a .342 attack efficiency to the Waves .220 in the game. Saint Mary's ended the game on a Groess kill, defeating the Waves 30-23.

The Waves took control throughout the second game, posting a .300 hitting efficiency with 17 kills on 40 swings. York seemed to be the only Gaels to find a rhythm, posting eight kills in the game. The Waves were led by Kayla Walker with six kills and three blocks, defeating the Gaels 30-23.

Pepperdine carried over their momentum in game three, as Lecca Roberts posted five kills with a .714 hitting percentage. Julie Rubenstein served 10 consecutive serves for the Waves, taking a 12-4 advantage over the Gaels. Saint Mary's would sting together some runs of their own, but it would not be enough as the Waves defeated the Gaels 30-29.

Saint Mary's bounced-back in game four, as freshman Shannon Lowell ignited for five kills, posting a .625 hitting efficiency. Groess added four kills on eight swings for the Gaels, while also chipping in three blocks. With the Gaels down 15-20, Lowell pounded down a kill to give Saint Mary's 16, and Gael defense would force the Waves into three straight attacking errors. With Kamana'o at the line Saint Mary's continued to gain momentum, taking a 23-21 lead over Pepperdine. The Gaels would never lose the lead form there, defeating the Waves 30-24 in the fourth set.

In the fifth and final game of the match both teams battled until the end. Groess had the hot-hand in the middle, posting five kills in the game with a .500 hitting efficiency. Kamana'o passed out 13 assists, leading her team to an impressive .379 hitting efficiency in game five. The Waves had two match-point opportunities, but freshman Megan York would not give-up, posting two important kills. The Gaels would earn their own match point on a Groess kill, forcing the Waves into their final timeout of the game. Groess would post her 18 kill on match-point, defeating Pepperdine 17-15.

The Gaels improve to 11-8 on the year and 3-5 in West Coast Conference play. Saint Mary's returns to action in the Pacific Northwest next weekend, facing Portland and Gonzaga on the road. The Gaels will face the Portland Pilots on Thursday, October 25 at 7:00 PM and the Gonzaga Bulldogs on Saturday October 27 at 5:00 PM.

San Diego - 3
Gonzaga - 2

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - Jessica Andersen's ninth kill of the match, lifted the 16th-ranked University of San Diego women's volleyball to a 3-2 win over visiting Gonzaga University Saturday afternoon in a West Coast Conference match at USD's Jenny Craig Pavilion.

With the 25-30, 30-17, 28-30, 30-22, 15-13 win, the Toreros run their winning streak to five, improve to 15-5 overall and move to 6-1 in the WCC. With the loss, the Bulldogs fall to 15-8 overall and 3-4 in the WCC.

Laurel Abrahamson tied a career-high with 25 kills on 43 attempts to post a .372 attack percentage. Amy DeGroot was the second Torero in double-digit kills as she had 16 and added in 12 digs for her 11th double-double of the season. Andrea Csaszi recorded a match-best 27 digs and as a team, USD had a .236 attack percentage.

For the Bulldogs, three players were in double-digit kills as Becky Jones led the team with 16, while Michelle Boevers had 14 and Briawna Mueller added in 11. Heather Dunn recorded a match-best 56 assists in leading the Zags to a .187 team attack percentage.

In game one, the Bulldogs shocked the Toreros by capturing a 30-25 win. In the early going it was a back and forth battle with both teams taking their turn with the lead. Then with the score at 17-17, Gonzaga put together a 8-0 run sparked by a Jones kill and capped by a USD attack error. The Zags never looked back.

In game two, USD bounced back to form as they cruised their way to a 30-17 win. With the score at 4-4, San Diego used a 7-1 run to gain momentum. The USD run was sparked by a Erin Wiskar service ace and capped by Ashton Basch kill. Gonzaga then took the next two points, but USD responded with a 5-2 run to push the lead to eight at 17-9. USD never looked back as they would simply cruise their way to a 30-17 win and even the match at one game apiece.

In game three, it was a closely contested battle with the Zags coming out on top 30-28. USD opened the frame with a 3-1 run, but that only fueled a 3-1 run for Gonzaga to even things up at 4-4. San Diego then went on a 7-3 run sparked by a Abrahamson kill and capped by a GU attack error. The Zags however, would crawl their way back into the match and eventually tie things up at 12-12. GU would go on to eventually build their lead up to as many as six at 19-13, but the Toreros would go on a 11-5 run to even the game at 24-24. But San Diego would not be able to regain the lead, as GU held on for the two-point win.

Then with their backs up against the wall, the Toreros responded in game four with a 30-22 win. USD jumped out to a quick 5-2 lead, but the Zags put together a 5-2 run of their own to even things up ay 7-7. San Diego responded with a 13-2 run to gain all the momentum. The Toreros' run was sparked by a Ali Troost Kill and capped by a Gonzaga ball handling error. USD never looked back as they would force a fifth and deciding game.

In game five, it was again USD who jumped out to an early lead at 7-3, but the Zags came back and scored six unanswered to tie things up. A Troost kill forced the teams to switch sides, and USD scored the next three points to take a comfortable 11-7 lead. Gonzaga then pulled to within two at 14-12, but Andersen would not allow them to get any closer with her kill off a set from Jessica Nyrop to give USD the win.

USD will return to action on Saturday as they head to San Francisco to take on the University of San Francisco in a 1 p.m. match.

San Francisco - 3
Portland - 0

San Francisco - USF volleyball hit a season-high .400 and blitzed visiting Portland 30-21, 30-19, 30-20 to close out the first half of the West Coast Conference schedule Saturday afternoon at War Memorial Gym. The Dons (14-9, 3-4 WCC) snapped a three-match losing skid and collected their 10th consecutive victory against the Pilots (7-14, 0-7 WCC).

Freshman opposite hitter Sarah Mandala continued to dazzle, recording a match-high 13 kills on .348 hitting to go along with five digs and four blocks. Junior middle blocker Carly Babin and senior outside hitter Kristin Hasselberg added nine kills apiece.

Junior setter Darcy Carroll turned in her third straight double-double performance with 29 assists, 10 digs and five kills in just two games. Freshman setter Alaina Sully directed the offense in game three, dishing out 15 assists to go along with five digs and two kills. Sophomore libero Haley Carroll recorded a match-high 18 digs for the Dons.

San Francisco held a 58-37 kills advantage and held the Pilots to a .102 attack percentage. USF won the digs battle 56-40 and held a 6.0-5.0 blocks edge. The Dons hit .441 with 18 kills and three errors in game one and closed out the match on .457 attacking with 21 kills and five errors. The match featured just six tie scores and two lead changes as the Pilots led early in games one and three.

USF senior outside hitter Brynn Maurer continued her climb up the WCC career digs list and with her sixth and final dig of the match moved past Portland standout Laura Coyle (1,630) for sole possession of fourth place on the career list with 1,631. Maurer finished with seven kills on .400 hitting and recorded six digs and an ace.

Junior middle blocker Ashley Grayson led Portland with 13 kills on .632 hitting with just one error in 19 attempts and added a pair of blocks. Senior outside hitter Nicole Thometz, freshman outside hitter Maria Clemens and junior middle blocker Jennifer Sheedy each added seven kills for the Pilots.

USF returns to action Saturday, October 27 when it hosts defending league champion No. 16 San Diego. First serve against the Toreros is set for 1:00 PM. The San Diego match will benefit "Dig For the Cure". Each USF student-athlete has raised pledges for each dig recorded during the contest with the proceeds going to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation, dedicated to breast cancer research.

JOIN USF FOR THE GREEN AND GOLD SCRIMMAGE AFTER VOLLEYBALL: Stick around after the match and join USF athletics and the Green and Gold Club as it presents the 23rd annual George O'Brien "Green and Gold" scrimmage game. The women's scrimmage kicks off at 4:00 PM with the men's immediately following. A post-event reception will close out the festivities, featuring comments from Evans and women's head coach Tanya Haave. For more information on the Green and Gold Scrimmage, please contact Julie Congi at (415) 422-2875 or congi@usfca.edu.

Santa Clara - 3
Loyola Marymount - 0

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Brittany Lowe's double-double and Krista Kelley's double-digit kills lifted the Santa Clara volleyball team to a 3-0 rout of Loyola Marymount Saturday afternoon at the Leavey Center. With the win, the Broncos overall record improved to 14-9, while their West Coast Conference record is now 6-1.

"The Pepperdine game on Thursday really gave us the confidence to grind out that first game today," said head coach Jon Wallace about the Broncos come from behind victory in game one. "They drew from the experience on Thursday and did a great job to win today's game. We are now looking towards Gonzaga and the players are excited to start preparing for that game."

Junior Lowe registered a match-high 17 kills and collected 11 digs to post her 10th double-double of the season. Outside hitter Kelley had another astounding performance Saturday with 14 kills and seven digs. Senior setter Crystal Matich dished out a match-high 50 assists and compiled a match-best .667 hitting percentage (6-0-9) and libero Caroline Walters recorded a match-high 13 digs.

The Lions took control early in the first game and compiled a quick seven-point lead, 11-4 on a kill from Christianna Reneau. The Broncos tried to tie the score on points from Nichole Clark, Kelley and Matich, but the Lions continued to hold the advantage. Yet, Lowe started a 6-0 run for the Broncos and three back-to-back kills from Kelley brought Santa Clara within one, 20-19. SCU knotted the score, 20-20, on a LMU attacking error and then tied it again, 21-21, off a strong kill from Clark. The Broncos racked on six straight points to push the score to 26-22, and eventually finished game one with a 30-25 victory.

Santa Clara did not give Loyola Marymount a chance to catch up in the second game as SCU pushed its way to a 7-1 start on points from Matich, Evans and Lowe. The Broncos continued to hold a solid edge over the Lions, and after reaching 20 points on a kill from Lowe, SCU never looked back as a block assist from Lauryn Dowd and Evans gave the Broncos a 30-22 win.

The Broncos once again gained a quick advantage, this time pushing their run to 9-1 on kills from Kelley, Evans, Lowe and Clark. Forced to take a timeout, the Lions returned from the short break to put back-to-back points on the board. Loyola Marymount continued to apply pressure on the Broncos and kept the score very close throughout the majority of the third game. However, Santa Clara was not going to give up that easily and an excellent rally kept alive on impressive saves from Walters and Evans put the Broncos up, 18-11. A successful attack from Lowe gave Santa Clara 20 points and a kill from Evans brought the Broncos to match point, 29-21. However, SCU was halted from ending the match for four more rallies, when a Lions setting error finally gave the Broncos a 30-24 triumph.

Saturday's contest was also the Broncos' "Dig for the Cure" fundraiser to benefit the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. Although Santa Clara is still receiving donations for the cause, as of Saturday's game the team raised over $3,000.

"We are honored to be a part of the "Dig for the Cure" campaign," said Wallace. "I'm really proud of my team for taking this task seriously. They went out to the community to ask for help and they received such a great response."

Santa Clara returns to action against Gonzaga on Thursday, Oct. 25 in Spokane, Wash. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m.