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WCC Weekly Volleyball Notes

Sept. 15, 2010

Complete Release in PDF Format



Overall Record: 2-10
WCC Record: 0-0
  • Gonzaga suffered four losses at the Pioneer Classic, dropping contests to Notre Dame (3-0), tournament host Denver (3-1), Texas A&M (3-0) and Jacksonville State (3-0). Last night, the Bulldogs dropped a four-set match to in-state rival Washington State in Pullman, Washington.

  • The Bulldogs' total of 90 team blocks ranks first in the WCC while their 2.26 blocks per set is second in the conference. Individually, freshman Meredith Crenshaw is second in the league with 1.00 blocks per set while senior Schylur Edelman is sixth at 0.87.

  • Among conference leaders, senior Allyson Powell is second with 162 digs and fifth in digs per set at 4.05. Junior Denise Van de Mortel is averaging 8.26 assists.

  • Gonzaga looks to get back into the win column with a match at Washington State Tuesday before hosting its own tournament over the weekend with Wyoming, Seattle and Idaho.
  • Overall Record: 4-5
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Loyola Marymount dropped three matches at the BYU Molten Classic to BYU (3-2), Wichita State (3-0) and Houston (3-0).

  • Freshman Betsi Metter and junior Jasmine Rankins rank 1-2 in the WCC with 15 and 14 service aces, respectively. As a team, Lions servers have put down 57 service aces with a conference-leading 1.73 per set.

  • Junior Jasmine Rankins had 38 kills in last week's three matches at a rate of 3.45 per set. She also had 30 digs and five service aces during the tournament. Raskins posted a double-double with 21 kills and 15 digs in the opener against BYU. Three of her aces came against Wichita State. Rankins is second in the league with 123 kills and third with a 3.73 per set average.

  • Loyola Marymount returns to the state of Utah for the Utah State Invitational this week where it will face Utah State and UC Riverside on Friday as well as Utah Valley on Saturday.
  • Overall Record: 6-4
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Pepperdine fell at #13 UCLA (3-0) before winning three at the UNLV Tournament vs. Cal State Fullerton (3-2), the host Rebels (3-0) and Eastern Kentucky (3-0) to earn the championship.

  • Junior Lilla Frederick posted a double-double against Cal State Fullerton with acareer-high-tying 17 kills and 10 digs. She followed that up with 10 kills vs. UNLV and a .533attack percentage. She posted a team-high 42 kills on the week, with her final kill of the weekend marking the 600th of her career. She now needs just five more to hit the century mark this season.

  • Junior Kim Hill tallied a solo block against UCLA to bring her career blocks total to 200. In addition, she recorded a career-high 10 digs and 12 kills vs. Rice for her first double-double.

  • Pepperdine plays in the Arizona Invitational this weekend, facing New Mexico and the host Wildcats on the first day and Texas State on Saturday.
  • Overall Record: 5-5
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Portland took one of four at the Cowgirl Classic with losses to host Wyoming (3-1), Boise State (3-0). Northern Colorado (3-0) before finishing with a win against Texas-Arlington (3-1).

  • Sophomore Ariel Usher led the Pilots last weekend with 36 kills while freshman Monica Jordan added 44 assists and 32 digs. On the season, senior Danielle Dupar is tops in the WCC with 5.50 digs per set. Other Pilot players among the conference leaders are junior Katie Hronek, who is 10th with 3.03 kills per set, and sophomore setter Madison Smith, who stands fifth with 8.53 assists.

  • The Pilots have been best served this season in four-set matches as they are 3-1 in such affairs. They are a combined 2-4 in three and five-set matches.

  • Portland travels to in-state rival and 16th-ranked Oregon on Wednesday before heading further south for the UC Davis Aggie Invitational where Nevada, Cal Poly and the host Aggies await.
  • Overall Record: 7-3
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Saint Mary's had a good run at the Hawaii Tournament with wins against UC Irvine (3-1) and San Diego State (3-0). The Gaels also were able to take the host, and sixth-ranked, Rainbow Wahine to four before losing, 3-1.

  • Sophomore Gabby Jolly was named to the All-Tournament team for the second straight week, this time with 31 kills and a .348 attack percentage in three matches. Against San Diego State she had 10 kills and hit .450 while against #6 Hawaii she pounded 12 kills at .350.

  • SMC is in the top three among WCC competition in all team statistical categories and owns the league's top spot in kills (551), assists (505) and digs (633). Senior Shannon Lowell leads the conference with 44 blocks, 1.13 per set, and is fifth with a .324 attack percentage.

  • Saint Mary's hosts Bay Area rivals No. 10 California and the nation's top ranked team Stanford this week, on Friday and Saturday night, respectively.
  • Overall Record: 5-3
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • San Diego took the championship at the Long Beach State Mizuno Invitaional with a pair of wins against Virginia (3-0) and the host #23 Long Beach (3-1). Last night, the Toreros made a quick trip to UC Irvine and took the match 3-0. Senior middle hitter Ashton Basch led all players with her 12 kills.

  • Senior Amy DeGroot had 28 kills and 19 digs in the two matches last week, including a double-double of 18 kills and 12 digs against Long Beach State. She has a total of 87 kills this season and leads the WCC with 3.78 kills per set.

  • The Toreros have faced four ranked opponents in their first seven matches. They picked up their first win against a ranked team with the victory against The Beach.

  • San Diego makes a quick trip for a Tuesday match at UC Irvine before taking part in the USD-SDSU Tournament over the weekend with contests against the host Aztecs, UC Santa Barbara and 12th-ranked Minnesota.
  • Overall Record: 1-8
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • San Francisco picked up its first win of the season with a three-set sweep of Behune-Cookman to close out the Miami Invitational where it also lost to Miami (3-0) and Florida International (3-1).

  • With the win against Bethune-Cookman, head coach Gilad Doron is now just one win away from his 100th career victory. USF used a 13-3 run to take the first set and a 14-4 stretch in the final stanza to secure the win. Freshman setter Joan Caloiaro nearly had a triple-double with 22 assists nine kills and nine digs in the match.

  • Sophomore Hadley Simmons was named to the All-Tournament team after posting 24 kills and 3.5 blocks.

  • San Francisco opens a five-match homestand by hosting #10 California on Friday andNo. 1 Stanford on Saturday.
  • Overall Record: 6-3
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Santa Clara went 2-1 at its own tournament sandwiching straight-set wins against Portland State (3-0) and Cal State Bakersfield (3-0) with a loss to Cal State Northridge (3-1).

  • Sophomore Dana Knudsen was named WCC Player of the Week after posting a .527 attack last weekend. She hit .600 (11-2-15) against Portland State and followed that up with a .688 (11-0-16) showing vs. Cal State Bakersfield.

  • Knudsen and junior Tanya Schmidt are 2-3 in the WCC with attack percentages of .390 and .368, respectively. Sophomore Kaleigh Durket is sixth at .319, but has a league-leading 127 kills. Junior Bridget O'Hara is tops in the conference with 164 digs.

  • Santa Clara stops in the Windy City to face DePaul on Wednesday before heading to the Notre Dame Tournament for matchups with No. 20 Dayton, Notre Dame and Delaware.

    WCC Player of the Week

    Dana Knudsen, Santa Clara, SO, MB
    This week's WCC Player of the Week honor went to Santa Clara's Dana Knudsen. She hit a combined .527 last weekend as the Broncos went 2-1 at their Santa Clara Invitational. She hit an impressive .600 (11-2-15) in the tournament opener against Portland State, but really shined in the final match against Cal State Bakersfield where she hit .688 with 11 kills on 16 swings with no errors.

    Also Nominated: Lilla Frederick (Pepperdine), Gabby Jolly (Saint Mary's), Amy Mahinalani DeGroot (San Diego), Jasmine Rankins (Loyola Marymount)

    After finishing in second place last season, the San Diego Toreros have been selected to regain the top spot in the 2010 West Coast Conference Coaches Preseason Poll and earn their fourth WCC title in six years. The Toreros received six first place votes and a total of 48 points from the conference coaches, as they return 2009 WCC Player of the Year and All-American Ali Troost, who was named to the preseason all-conference team along with 2008 WCC Player of the Year and All-American Amy DeGroot and 2009 all-conference honorable mention selection Kelsi Myers.

    Reigning WCC Champion Saint Mary's took the second place spot with one first place vote and a total of 43 points. Rob Browning, the 2009 WCC Coach of the Year, returns four starters from a team that fell at fourth-seeded Stanford in five sets in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Gaels return 2009 All-WCC First Team member Shannon Lowell, 2009 All-Freshman Team member Lauren Corp, and all-conference honorable mention pick Kapua Kamana'o.

    Pepperdine, which received the remaining first place vote, tallied 36 points to earn the third place spot. The Waves return five starters, three of which appeared on last year's all-conference team, including preseason all-conference selection Kim Hill, who garnered First Team honors last season after leading the WCC in hitting percentage. Rounding out the top half of the poll for the second year in a row was Santa Clara with 33 points. Bronco middle blocker Dana Knudsen was selected to this year's preseason all-conference team after earning all-WCC honorable mention honors last season.

    San Francisco landed in the fifth spot with 23 points. The Dons return four starters, highlighted by preseason all-conference member Sarah Mandala, a 2009 All-WCC First Team member who led the conference in kills per set last season, while adding 10 newcomers to this year's roster. Gonzaga tallied 18 points for a sixth place finish and return five of its seven starters from last season in Kaprina Goodwin, Caitlin Cozad, Denise Van de Mortel, Laura Day and Allyson Powell.

    Portland edged Loyola Marymount for the seventh place spot with 12 points. The team returns preseason all-conference member Ariel Usher, who led the team in points in 2009 and finished in the WCC's Top 10 in hitting percentage. Loyola Marymount rounded out the preseason poll with 11 points and is led this season by first year head coach Tom Black.

    2010 WCC Preseason Coaches Poll
    1. USD - 48 points (6)
    2. SMC - 43 (1)
    3. PEP - 36 (1)
    4. SCU - 33
    5. USF - 23
    6. GON - 18
    7. POR - 12
    7. LMU - 11
    (First place votes)

    2010 Preseason All-Conference Team
    Lauren Corp, SMC, SO, OH
    Amy DeGroot, USD, RSR, OH
    Kim Hill, PEP, JR, MB
    Kapua Kamana'o, SMC, SR, S
    Dana Knudsen, SCU, SO, MB
    Shannon Lowell, SMC, SR, MB
    Sarah Mandala, USF, SR, OH
    Kelsi Myers, USD, SR, S
    Ali Troost, USD, SR, RS
    Ariel Usher, POR, SO, MB

    Over the last eight seasons, the WCC has established itself as one of the premier women's volleyball conferences in the country. Over the past five seasons, the WCC has appeared in the top five RPI three times. In 2008, the WCC had one of its best seasons, tying for a conference high with the fourth best NCAA RPI ranking in the country. Since then, the WCC has remained in the top 10 in Division I RPI out of the 32 total conferences.

    WCC RPI Rankings
    2009 8th
    2008 4th
    2007 6th
    2006 5th
    2005 4th
    2004 6th
    2003 4th
    2002 7th

    The Saint Mary's volleyball team clinched the 2009 WCC title by outdueling 2008 WCC Champion San Diego in a five set battle (25-18, 25-19, 20-25, 17-25, and 15-10) that featured 30 ties and 10 lead changes. The win was the Gaels' first ever WCC Championship in program history.

    After taking home the championship title, Saint Mary's then finished off the regular season with a sweep over BYU to remain undefeated at home and record the team's third straight sweep. The Gaels' 13-1 record is the best conference finish in school history.

    SMC Results in 2009 NCAA Tournament
    SAINT MARY'S def. UC Santa Barbara, 3-2
    (24-26, 22-25, 25-20, 25-14, 15-13)

    No. 4 Stanford def. SAINT MARY'S, 3-2
    (21-25, 25-21, 25-22, 24-26, 15-13)