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Zags Host Pepperdine, Loyola Marymount

Oct. 2, 2007

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Upcoming Matches:

THURSDAY - OCTOBER 4
GONZAGA (11-6, 0-2 WCC)  vs. Pepperdine (9-4, 1-0 WCC), 7 p.m.

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 6
GONZAGA VS. Loyola Marymount (8-6, 0-1 WCC), 1 p.m.


Last Week's Results
9/27 at Saint Mary's - L, 3-0
9/29 at Santa Clara - L, 3-0


TOP STORY: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball team begins the home portion of its West Coast Conference schedule this week as it welcomes Pepperdine University and Loyola Marymount University tot the Martin Centre. The Bulldogs will face the Waves on Thursday, Oct. 4 at 7 p.m., and the Lions on Saturday, Oct. 6 at 1 p.m. Pepperdine is currently 9-4 overall and 1-0 in conference, while Loyola Marymount holds an 8-6 overall record and a 0-1 mark in the WCC. 

PEPPERDINE WAVES: This will be the 41st meeting between Gonzaga University and Pepperdine University. The Waves are 37-3 all-time against Gonzaga and have won 20 in a row, including 10 straight in Spokane. The last seven meetings between the two schools have all been 3-0 sweeps for Pepperdine. The Waves are currently 9-4 overall and 0-1 in the West Coast Conference. Pepperdine defeated Loyola Marymount University 3-1 in its only WCC match of the year. Julie Rubenstein leads the Waves in kills, while Caitlin Lawson in Pepperdine's digs leader (3.07). 

LOYOLA MARYMOUNT LIONS: This will be the 41st meeting between Gonzaga University and Loyola Marymount University. The Bulldogs broke a 27-match losing streak to the Lions that dated back to the 1992 season when it came back from a 2-1 deficit to defeat them 3-2 on Oct. 26 of last year. Loyola Marymount is currently 8-6 overall and 0-1 in the WCC. The Lions lost their only conference match this season by the score of 3-1 to Pepperdine University. The Lions are led by Heather Hughes who is averaging a WCC-best 5.79 kills per game.  

A RECAP OF LAST WEEK: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball squad opened West Coast Conference action last week. The Bulldogs didn't get the results they were hoping for as they fell to both Saint Mary's College and Santa Clara University 3-0.

A LOOK AHEAD: After its matches against Pepperdine University and Loyola Marymount University, Gonzaga University will close out its non-conference slate with a match at Eastern Washington University on Oct. 9 at 7 p.m. The Bulldogs will then host the University of Portland in a WCC match-up on Oct. 13 at 2 p.m.

BIG WIN: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball team defeated the University of Idaho 3-1 on Sept. 18. The Bulldogs came alive after a first-game 30-19 setback to the Vandals to win three-straight (30-27, 30-26, 30-23) and capture the victory. The win was a momentous one for Gonzaga as the Bulldogs had not won on Idaho's court since the 1997 campaign.

NUMBER 11: With Gonzaga University's victory over the University of Idaho on Sept. 18 it improved the Bulldogs record to 11-4 overall. The 11 victories are the most Bulldogs wins in 11 seasons and the most wins this early in the season in 17 years. Gonzaga finished the 1996 campaign with a 13-19 record and finished the 1990 season with a 25-7 record, including a 12-3 mark over the first 15 contests.

BEST START IN 17 YEARS: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball squad improved to11-4 overall by defeating  the University of Idaho (3-1) on Tuesday, Sept. 18. The 11-4 start for the Zags is the best start since the 1990 season when they came out strong with an 12-3 record.

MOVING UP THE RECORD BOOKS: Multiple Gonzaga University women's volleyball players have continued to move up the ranks in the Bulldog career record book this season. Senior Briawna Mueller is currently third in total blocks (455), block solos (95) and block assists (360). Senior Becky Jones is second in total attempts (3,658) and eighth in kills (1,274), while classmate Alecia Douglas in ninth in digs (1,005) and seventh in service aces (104). 

EIGHT MATCH WINNING STREAK: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball team won a school-record eight-straight matches when it defeated Sam Houston State University in the second match of the TCU Tournament. The winning streak started with a 3-0 victory over Morgan State University on Sept. 1 and was broken when the Bulldogs fell to TCU on Sept. 15. The longest winning streak in Gonzaga history had been seven-straight from Oct. 19 through Nov. 5, 1994.

ALL-TOURNAMENT: Gonzaga University women's volleyball senior classmates Heather Dunn and Becky Jones earned All-Tournament honors at the TCU Tournament. Dunn earned all-tournament accolades in each of the four tournaments the Zags have participated in, while this is Jones third-straight all-tournament honor.

TOURNAMENT WIN: Matching up against the University of New Mexico, whose only loss of the 2007 season was against a Top-25 team, did not scare the Gonzaga University women's volleyball team. The Bulldogs took a hard-fought 3-2 (23-30, 30-27, 31-29, 30-22, 15-13) victory over the Lobos to win the Comcast Lobo Invitational hosted by New Mexico. It was the first tournament victory in two seasons for GU. The Bulldogs last won a tournament in 2005 when they claimed the Over the Mountain Invite. 

MVP, MVP: Senior Heather Dunn, of the Gonzaga University women's volleyball team, was named the Comcast Lobo Invitational Most Valuable Player after dishing out a season-high 64 assists, along with collecting eight digs in the decisive 3-2 win over New Mexico to claim the championship.

ALL-AROUND PERFORMANCE: Gonzaga University women's volleyball player Elaina Renius tallied 19 kills, seven solo blocks and two block assists versus the University of New Mexico. The seven solo blocks is tied for the second most blocks in a single-match in GU history. Renius also had seven solo blocks against Saint Mary's in 2006.

FIVE SWEEPS TO START THE SEASON: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball team first five wins of the season were each 3-0 victories. It is the first time in program history that the Zags first five wins of the season have been sweeps and the first time since the 1997 campaign they have had five total sweeping victories.

SECOND PLACE: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball team defeated Boise State University 3-0 (30-26, 30-22, 30-26) to earn second place in the Bulldog Volleyball Tournament. The Zags, who rebounded from a first-match loss in the tournament to win their next two, placed two players on the All-Tournament team; seniors Heather Dunn and Becky Jones.

RUBY'S MONTANA TOURNAMENT: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball team got off to a great start in 2007 finishing the Ruby's Montana Invitational with a 2-1 record. The Bulldogs defeated both Canisius College and host University of Montana 3-0 and fell to tournament champion UC Irvine 3-1. Both Elaina Renius and Heather Dunn were named to the All-Tournament team.

OPEN THE SEASON WITH A W: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball team earned a 3-0 sweep of Canisius College to open its 2007 season. It was the first Bulldogs season-opening win since the 2001 campaign when they defeated Boise State University 3-1. It also was the first Zag season-opening sweep since the 1999 when they defeated Whitworth 3-0.

CAREER NIGHT: Junior Elaina Renius had a career night against the University of Idaho Sept. 18. The Gonzaga University middle blocker finished the contest with 20 kills; a career-high.

LIVE ON THE INTERNET: All Gonzaga University women's volleyball home matches are available via Gametracker on the internet at www.gozags.com. Check the Gonzaga website for all Gametracker links. Gametracker for selected away matches are also available. Check out gozags.com for all Gametracker links. 

HEAD COACH Kip Yoshimura: Kip Yoshimura enters his sixth year as  Gonzaga University's head coach. Yoshimura has compiled a 41-122 record during his first five plus years with the Bulldogs. A former assistant coach at Gonzaga during the 1992 season, Yoshimura has complied a 293-194 career record which includes nine seasons at Lewis-Clark State College where he guided the Warriors to nine-straight NAIA tournament appearances. A 1990 graduate of Long Beach State University, Yoshimura entered the coaching ranks as a student-assistant on Long Beach State's 1989 NCAA National Championship team.

BULLDOGS TABBED 7TH IN WCC COACHES POLL: Gonzaga University's women's volleyball team has been picked to finish seventh in the West Coast Conference this season in a pre-season vote of the conference coaches. Pepperdine University was selected as the favorite to capture the 2007 WCC regular season title. The Waves garnered five first place votes and tallied 61 overall points to earn the top spot.

Women's Volleyball 2007 Preseason Poll
1. Pepperdine - 61 (5)
2. San Diego - 52 (1)
3. Santa Clara - 50 (1)
4. Loyola Marymount - 37
5. San Francisco - 30
6. Saint Mary's - 27 (1)
7. GONZAGA - 23
8. Portland - 8
(First place votes)