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Final Homestand Ahead for Toreros as Pepperdine and LMU Come to Town

Nov. 5, 2007

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WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE: The 19th-ranked University of San Diego women's volleyball team (17-7, 7-3 WCC) will finally return to the friendly confines of the Jenny Craig Pavilion this week with a pair of Southern California WCC foes. On Thursday, Loyola Marymouont University will come to San Diego for a 7 p.m. match, then on Saturday, USD will host Pepperdine in a 1 p.m. match. Prior to Saturday's match, USD will be honoring its senior class of Laurel Abrahamson, Jessica Andersen, Lauren McClure and Erin Wiskar.

LAST TIME OUT: The Toreros split of pair of matches this past week, as they swept Saint Mary's in Moraga before falling to Santa Clara 3-1 on Saturday. In Thursday's sweep, Amy DeGroot recorded 10 digs to go along with her match-best 15 kills to record her team-best 12th double-double of the season. Senior outside hitter Erin Wiskar was the second USD player to record a double-double as she had 10 digs and added in 10 kills and junior setter Jessica Nyrop also recorded a double-double with a match-best 43 assists and 11 digs, while helping direct the USD offense to a .291 attack percentage. In Saturday's loss to Santa Clara, DeGroot and Laurel Abrahamson led the team offensively with 12 kills each, with Abrahamson posting a .246 attack percentage. DeGroot also added in 12 digs to post her 13th double-double of the season. Jessica Nyrop recorded 45 assists in helping direct the USD offense to a .169 team attack percentage.

A LOOK AHEAD: After this final homestand, the Toreros will close out the season with a trip to the Pacific Northwest to take on Gonzaga University and the University of Portland. The Nov. 15th match will be in Spokane with a 7 p.m. start and on Nov. 17th, USD will travel to Portland to take on the Pilots at 1 p.m.

SCOUTING THE LIONS: Loyola Marymount enters the contest with an overall record of 13-10 and a 5-5 mark in the WCC after picking up a 3-2 win over Gonzaga and then sweeping Portland this past week. The Lions hold a 36-18 edge over the Toreros, but USD did claim this season's first match-up in Los Angeles. Loyola Marymount's offense is led by senior opposite Heather Hughes, who had a team-best 460 kills and is hitting at a .241 clip. The floor leader for the Lions is freshman setter Renee Horton, who has a team-best 1,029 assists in helping lead the team to a .230 team attack percentage. The Lions are under the direction of 18th-year head coach Steve Stratos. During his tenure in Los Angeles, Stratos has posted an overall record of 356-175.

SCOUTING THE WAVES: Pepperdine University enters the week with an overall record of 15-7 and a 7-3 mark in the WCC after picking up back-to-back sweeps over Gonzaga and Portland this past week. Pepperdine owns a 33-14 all-time record against the Toreros, but USD captured the first meeting in Malibu earlier this season. The Waves' offense is led by junior outside hitter Julie Rubenstein, who has a team-best 368 kills and is hitting for a .259 clip. The floor leader for Pepperdine is sophomore setter Kiah Fiers, who has a team-leading 1,047 assists to help lead the team to a .283 attack percentage. The Waves are under the direction of 25th-year head coach Nina Matthies. During her tenure in Malibu, Matthies has posted an overall record of 471-282.

THE POLLS: The University of San Diego women's volleyball team fell four spots to No. 19 in the latest CSTV/AVCA top-25 poll. This marks the 12th consecutive week USD has appeared in the top-25. Neither Loyola Marymount nor Pepperdine are ranked.

APPROACHING 1,000: Senior middle hitter Laurel Abrahamson is closing in on the 1,000 kills mark for her career. With her 344 kills on the season, she now has moved her career total to 964. With her current average of 14.3 kills per match, she should surpass this mark during the match against the Gonzaga University on Nov. 15 in Spokane, Wash.

GETTING IN ON THE ACTION: Junior opposite Erin Wiskar joined in on the double-figure kill action on Thursday for just the first time this year. Wiskar was one of two different Toreros to record double-digit kills in the three-game sweep over SMC. The Port Moody, British Columbia native also recorded 10 digs to post her first double-double of the season. On the season, Wiskar has posted 102 kills ad 189 digs.

LIGHTS, CAMERA ACTION: All USD home matches, as well as select road matches, will be streamed live via video on the athletics department website. Fans can watch all the action live from the comfort of their home by logging onto usdtoreros.com. Once on the home page, click the LIVE button on the top right of the page and follow the instructions. There is no cost for this service.

A LOOK AT THE RECORD BOOKS: Laurel Abrahamson has moved her way up second all-time in career hitting percentage at .332, trailing Lindsay Sherburne's .334 mark. Jessica Nyrop has also moved her way into the career assists top-10 list at No. 6 with 2,338. Andrea Csaszi has etched her name into the single-season charts in digs with her 442 digs that places her third, behind Jackie Bernardine's 576 for the all-time record set in the 2005 season and Bernardine's 510 she set during the 2004 season.

PETRIE RETURNS TO THE SIDELINES: Ninth-Year head coach Jennifer Petrie took the fall semester of 2006 off to spend time with her new born son Charles, her three-year old daughter Jane, as well as time with her husband Mark, and let her top assistant for the previous five seasons, Brent Hilliard, take the reigns for the season. She has now returned to continue to lead the USD volleyball program. Petrie has done an outstanding job directing the fortunes of San Diego volleyball since taking over as the Toreros head coach in 1999. Honored as the 2004 West Coast Conference Coach of the Year, Petrie continues to establish the University of San Diego as one of the top volleyball programs in the nation. In seven complete seasons as head coach, Petrie has led San Diego to six appearances in the NCAA Tournament (1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, & 2005).

TOREROS PICKED TO FINISH SECOND IN WCC: Pepperdine University was selected as the favorite to capture the 2007 WCC women's volleyball regular season title, as selected by the conference coaches. The Waves garnered five first place votes and tallied 61 overall points to earn the top spot. USD, the defending WCC Champions, was tabbed second with 52 overall points and one first place vote. The Toreros edged Santa Clara University, which was selected third with 50 overall points and also received one first place vote. Loyola Marymount University was tabbed fourth with 37 overall points, followed by the University of San Francisco (30). Saint Mary's College was selected sixth with 27 overall points and picked up a first place vote. Gonzaga University (23) and the University of Portland (8) round out this year's poll in seventh and eighth place, respectively.