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WCC Volleyball Recaps

Nov. 3, 2007

Pepperdine - 3
Gonzaga - 0

Malibu, Calif. - The Pepperdine women's volleyball team posted its fourth consecutive sweep with a 3-0 win (30-19, 30-20, 32-30) over Gonzaga on Saturday afternoon at Firestone Fieldhouse.

The Waves improved to 16-7 (7-3 WCC) with the win, while the Bulldogs fell to 16-11 (4-7 WCC)

The Waves came out hot in game one, as they hit .552 as a team and limited the Bulldogs to a .118 hitting percentage, as they claimed a 30-19 win. The Bulldogs took an early 6-3 lead in game two, but the Waves used an 8-1 run to take a 12-7 lead. The Bulldogs got no closer than five points the rest of the game, as the Waves went on to claim a 30-20 win. Game three was a tight contest, as the Waves captured the lead for the first time at 15-14 and had the Bulldogs at match point at 29-27. Gonzaga responded by scoring three consecutive points to claim a 30-27 lead that put the Waves in danger of losing the game. Consecutive kills by Rachel Lumsden (Brea, Calif./Brea Olinda HS), Julie Rubenstein (Camarillo, Calif./Oaks Christian HS) and Lecca Roberts (Kula, Hawaii/Seabury HS) at match point gave the Waves the 32-30 win and its fourth consecutive sweep.

Pepperdine hit .390 for the match while Gonzaga hit .144.

"I thought we did some really good things did today," Pepperdine Coach Nina Matthies said. "I thought our offense really stepped up, and we played pretty solid. Gonzaga got some momentum in the third game and we battled and stayed calm. I think we lose the third game at the beginning of the year, but now I feel like we're calm and confident."

Lumsden tallied 17 kills behind a .433 hitting percentage and also registered seven digs, Rubenstein had a team-best 19 kills and eight digs, and Kiah Fiers (Palos Verdes Estates, Calif./Peninsula HS) set a season-high for assists in a three-game match with 48.

Loyola Marymount - 3
Portland - 0

Los Angeles, CA - Loyola Marymount (13-10, 5-5 in WCC) swept Portland (7-18, 0-11 in WCC) in impressive fashion by scores of 30-12, 30-20 and 30-22 on Saturday afternoon in Gersten Pavilion. The Lions hit .333 overall in the match, led by senior Jania Motton's .625 (10 for 16) mark. Senior Christianna Reneau collected a match-high 13 kills while hitting .417 on the day, including her 1,000th career kill for the game-winner in game one. Reneau becomes just the 10th player in LMU history to reach the 1,000-kill plateau, joining teammate Heather Hughes at 1,599 career kills.

The Lions hit a blistering .516 (19 for 31) in game one, led by Hughes' perfect 1.000 on three attacks, to easily take a 30-12 victory in the first frame. Reneau led all hitters with seven kills in the game, and hit an amazing .636 over that span, to guide LMU to the victory. The Lions opened up an early 3-0 lead before advancing to 6-2 on a Hughes kill. Reneau capped a seven-point LMU run that left the score at 12-4 before back-to-back Portland attack errors made the score 18-7 in favor of the Lions. 11 of the 30 LMU points in the frame came by way of a Portland error, seven on the attack, two on serves and one blocking error. LMU took the 25-10 lead on another of Hughes' three kills in the game. Reneau fittingly put away the last three LMU points in the game, entering the record books in impressive fashion.

Game two started just as game one had ended, as LMU jumped out to an early 10-3 lead on kills by Emily Day and Erin Downey and a block by Motton. With the game at 12-7, the Lions put away four unanswered points to earn a 16-7 advantage. Portland would battle back to run the score to 20-14 before kills by Reneau and Motton made the score 23-14. Three straight kills by Jessica Clemens put the Pilots within striking distance at 27-20, but the Lions proved too tough as a kill by Hughes and two by Reneau advanced game two to game point. With Portland on the ropes, Day gave LMU the 30-20 victory with one of her two match aces.

Reneau and Becky Stehling each hit .800 in game three, collecting four kills apiece in the victory. Day gave LMU the slight 20-17 lead with one of her three kills in the frame before Portland responded to cut the lead to 22-20 just a few plays later. The Lions refused to give any further breathing room, taking a 24-20 lead on a Hughes kill to force a Portland timeout. LMU continued to push the accelerator after the break, advancing the lead to 27-22 before the Pilots elected to burn their final timeout. Back-to-back Portland attack errors pushed the match to match point before Reneau sealed the victory with her 13th kill on the day.

Freshman Renee Horton collected 30 assists in the impressive offensive effort for LMU. Day led all players with 15 digs in the match and Hughes added 10 of her own.

Clemens recorded a team-high 11 kills for Portland, while Kara Pein and Danielle Dupar were tops in assists and digs with 24 and 11, respectively.

Santa Clara - 3
San Diego - 1

Santa Clara, Calif. - Libero Caroline Walters shattered the Santa Clara and West Coast Conference all-time digs record Saturday afternoon as she helped SCU to a 3-1 (30-28, 22-30, 30-23, 34-32) upset of No. 15 San Diego. The senior collected a team-best 18 digs to improve her career total to 1,869 and break the current career record of 1,860. With the win, the Broncos pushed their winning streak to seven matches and improved to 10-1 in WCC play and 18-9 on the season. Meanwhile, the Toreros dropped to 7-3 in league play and 17-7 overall.

"What Caroline has accomplished this afternoon is an amazing feat," said head coach Jon Wallace. "She beat out some amazing players for that record including Lia Young who held the record since 1993. We are all extremely proud of her."

Outside hitter Krista Kelley registered match-highs with 22 kills and three service aces and tied the team-best three total blocks. Junior Brittany Lowe recorded 20 kills and 14 digs, while sophomore Lindsy Evans added 12 kills and three total blocks. Junior Taylor O'Brien made huge contributions to the back row as she collected 10 digs and assisted in two key plays and Nichole Clark led the team offensively with a .312 hitting percentage (9-4-16).

Santa Clara opened the first game 6-2 and points from Evans, Kelley, Lowe and Lauryn Dowd. However, San Diego fought back to knot the score 8-8 on a kill from Erin Wiskar. The Toreros then gained a six point lead, 16-10, on points from Amy DeGroot, Torey Ellick and a service ace from Laurel Abrahamson. Yet SCU forced USD to take a timeout after it rallied back to bring the score within two, 24-22, on successful plays by Lowe, Clark and Evans. An ace by Evans tied the score, 25-25. San Diego would take the lead once more but another Bronco ace by Walters tied the score for the last time and a solid block from Dowd ended game one, 30-28.

The Broncos took early control of the second game, coming out of the gates with a 4-0 fueled by serving from setter Crystal Matich and blocks from Evans, Dowd and Kelley. SCU tried to widened the gap but USD battled to tied the score 10-10 and then again at 13-13. Back-to-back kills from DeGroot gave the Toreros a three-point edge, 17-14. San Diego held the advantage for the remainder of the game although Santa Clara did come within one point, 21-20 on a kill from Matich, but was unable to knot the score. The Toreros finished game two, 30-22 on a kill from Abrahamson.

After the break, Santa Clara and San Diego battled point-for-point throughout the majority of the third and fourth games. Yet in the third game, the Broncos finally broke free on a kill from Dowd, 17-16. Two straight points from Evans gave SCU a three-point lead, 19-16, and forced San Diego into a timeout. After the short break, the Broncos continued their run on points from Dowd and Evans to make the score, 23-19. Back-to-back kills from Kelley brought Santa Clara to game-point, 29-21, and a solo block from Kelley ended game three, 30-23.

Although they were trailing 2-1 in games, the Toreros came out firing in the start of the fourth game and won the first two points. Yet, Santa Clara tied the score 2-2 on an ace from Kelley and the two team's once again went head-to-head. The Broncos tied the score 10 out of the 11 times. At 22-21, Evans slammed the ball down to even out the score, but a kill from Ali Troost would give San Diego the edge once again and this time they would jump to a two-point lead on an ace from Andrea Csaszi. USD remained in control of the scoreboard the earned a four-point lead, 28-24, on a Broncos error. SCU was forced to their second and last timeout of the game. Coming out of the timeout, Lowe killed the ball to break the Toreros run and keep the Broncos alive. Yet, USD earned game-point, 29-25, on a kill from Abrahamson. Freshman Kelley reacted quickly to hold off San Diego and bring the Broncos into a rotation that would lead them to victory. Behind the serving of Walters, Santa Clara tied the score, 29-29, on a kill from Dowd. A block solo from Kelley gave SCU game-point, 30-29, but USD would tied the score quickly afterwards. Kelley gave the Broncos game point once again, 32-31, but the Toreros would not give up that easily and tied the score on a kill from Troost. However, a solo block from Lowe made the score 33-32 and a San Diego error brought the match to a close, 34-32.

"We got into a rotation that gave us great match ups," said Wallace. "We trusted it and stayed aggressive. In that last timeout when we were down four points I told the team we just need a burst of energy right now and who knows what can happen and I believe the turning point was Brittany Lowe's block, which was unbelievable."

Saint Mary's - 3
San Francisco - 1

Moraga, Calif. - Saint Mary's volleyball would not be beaten on their home court, defeating San Francisco 33-31, 24-30, 30-21, 35-33. Four Gaels would post double digit kills, as sophomore Lauren Jaeckel and freshman Megan York each posted 16 apiece. Jaeckel recorded .438 hitting percentage on the night, while also adding four blocks. York picked up 13 digs in the game, and added three blocks and one ace. The Dons were led by senior Kristin Hassleberg, who posted a match-high 20 kills.

Opposite hitter Lauren Jaeckel could not be stopped in game one, as the lefty posted five kills for a .364 hitting percentage. Freshman Shannon Lowell joined in with five kills as well, while also posting two blocks.

Both teams battled evenly throughout the first game, as the score would be tied 13 times. The Gaels took the lead from the start, but the Dons would continue to pressure Saint Mary's, posting 4.5 blocks in the game. Once the score hit 29 apiece both teams would turn up the intensity, pushing the scores into the 30s. A kill by San Francisco's Addie Webster tied the game at 30 apiece, but the Gaels would respond with a Lowell kill on a slide attack. The Don's answered back with a Webster kill to tie the game at 31-31, but with back-to-back kills by Lowell and Kamana'o the Gaels would take game one, 33-31.

The score was tied 11 times in game two, with both teams battling back and forth. The Dons took an early lead on the Gaels, 4-1, but Saint Mary's would post a York kill and Kamana'o ace to pull within one. From that point on neither team led by more than three points, and once the score reached 20 the Dons surged ahead, going on a 10-4 run to defeat the Gaels 30-24 in the second game. San Francisco recorded 19 kills to the Gaels' 10, while hitting .253 to Saint Mary's .086.

In game three Saint Mary's found their rhythm, recording a .333 team hitting efficiency and scooping up 18 digs. Junior Brittany Barker tagged three kills on three attempts for a perfect attack percentage, while Taylor Groess went 3-of-6 with no errors. The Gaels took an early four point lead over the Dons and never looked back, defeating San Francisco 30-21 in the fourth set.

Saint Mary's maintained the momentum throughout most of game four, taking a seven point lead over the Dons at 25-18. The Dons would sneak back into the game point-by-point, as San Francisco's defense forced the Gaels into six attack errors late in the game. The Dons tied the game at 27 apiece, and both teams would trade points back and forth from that point on. At 29-29 the Gaels would come up with a big block by Lowell and Jaeckel, giving them the advantage, but the Dons would respond with a Mandala kill. Jaeckel posted her 16th kill of the match to give the Gaels back the lead, but once again the Dons would answer with a Webster kill. Eventually Saint Mary's would string together two consecutive points on a York kill and Don error, winning game four 35-33.