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Bulldogs Play at #18 San Diego and #22 Santa Clara

Nov. 8, 2006

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- UPCOMING GAMES -THURSDAY - NOV. 9 - 7 p.m.JENNY CRAIG PAVILION, San Diego, CAGONZAGA (8-17, 3-7 WCC) vs. #18 San Diego (20-5, 10-1 WCC)

SATURDAY - NOV. 11 - 1 p.m.LEAVEY CENTER, Santa Clara, CAGONZAGA vs. #22 Santa Clara (17-6, 7-4 WCC)

TOP STORY: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball team plays its final road matches of the season this weekend when it plays at the University of San Diego and Santa Clara University. The Bulldogs will play at San Diego, who are ranked 18th in the lastest CSTV/AVCA Top 25 Coaches Poll, on Thursday, Nov. 9 at 7 p.m., and then face off against Santa Clara, who are ranked 22nd, on Saturday, Nov. 11 at 1 p.m.

SAN DIEGO TOREROS: This will be the 40th meeting between Gonzaga University and the University of San Diego and the second meeting this season. The Toreros , who earned a 3-0 victory over the Bulldogs on Oct. 14, now hold a 30-9 lead in the all-time series, including 24-straight wins. San Diego currently holds a 20-5 overall record and a 10-1 record in the West Coast Conference. The Toreros can clinch the outright WCC title and an automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament with two wins this weekend, or a combination of one win and a Pepperdine loss.

SANTA CLARA BRONCOS: This will be the 40th meeting between Gonzaga University and Santa Clara University and the second meeting this season. The Broncos, who earned a 3-2 victory over the Bulldogs on Oct. 12, now hold a 33-6 lead in the all-time series, including 23-straight victories. Santa Clara currently holds a 17-6 overall record and a 7-4 record in the West Coast Conference. SCU saw a familiar face back on the floor last week as senior setter Crystal Matich returned after missing the first nine matches of the WCC season.

A RECAP OF LAST WEEK: Gonzaga University junior Becky Jones had her 12th double-double of the season to help the women's volleyball team earn a 3-0 (31-29, 34-32, 30-15) sweep of the University of Portland in a West Coast Conference match-up Nov. 4 at the Martin Centre. It was the Zags first 3-0 WCC victory in nearly five seasons. The last time Gonzaga earned a three-game sweep was on Oct. 6, 2001 when it defeated San Francisco.

A LOOK AHEAD: After its matches against the University of San Diego and Santa Clara University, Gonzaga University will close out its regular-season action by welcoming Saint Mary's College and the University of San Francisco to the Martin Centre. The Bulldogs face SMC on Nov. 16 at 7 p.m. and USF on Nov. 18 at 1 p.m.

ANOTHER STREAK DOWN: It is safe to say that the Gonzaga University women's volleyball team has a knack for breaking streaks this season. First the Bulldogs broke a 15-match losing streak to Eastern Washington on Sept. 12, then ended a 10-match losing streak to Idaho on Oct. 3, and followed that up with winning their first road West Coast Conference match in 31 matches against Saint Mary's on Oct. 21. It was no different on Oct. 26 and Nov. 4. Gonzaga broke a 27-match losing streak to Loyola Marymount University on Oct. 26 that dated back to the 1992 season when it came back from a 2-1 deficit to defeat the visiting Lions 3-2 (26-30, 30-26, 22-30, 30-24, 16-14). On Nov. 4 the Zags earned a 3-0 sweep over the University of Portland; Gonzaga's first 3-0 WCC victory in nearly five seasons.

BACK-TO-BACK WINS: The Gonzaga University women's volleyball team won back-to-back West Coast Conference matches for the first time since the 2002 season when it defeated both Saint Mary's College (10/21) and Loyola Marymount University (10/26) by the score of 3-2. The last time the Bulldogs pulled of this feat they defeated San Francisco University and Saint Mary's by the exact same score in 2002.

FIRST WCC WIN OF THE SEASON: Behind 2-1 against Saint Mary's College, the Gonzaga University women's volleyball team fought back and won the final two games to earn a 3-2 (17-30, 30-25, 28-30, 31-29, 5-12) come-from-behind victory on Saturday, Oct. 21. The win was the Bulldogs first conference victory of the season and first road conference win in 31 matches; nearly four seasons. The last time GU earned a WCC road win was during the 2002 season when it also defeated Saint Mary's by the same score.

ANOTHER STREAK BROKEN: Gonzaga University's 3-2 come-from-behind victory over the University of Idaho on Oct. 3 broke a 10-match losing streak to the Vandals that dated back to the 1997 season. The last time the Bulldogs had defeated the Vandals was Sept. 9, 1997 when they earned a 3-0 sweep at Idaho.

BREAKING A STREAK: Gonzaga University's 3-2 victory over Eastern Washington University on Tuesday, Sept. 12 broke a 15-match losing streak to the Eagles that dated back to the 1996 season. The last time the Bulldogs had defeated the Eagles was on Oct. 1, 1996 when they earned a 3-1 victory. With Eastern Washington leading 2-1 in last week's match, Gonzaga won the final two games to earn the five-game victory and break the streak.

ONE OF ONLY 12: Gonzaga University junior Becky Jones became one of only 12 players in GU history to eclipse 1,000 career kills. With her 21 kills against Saint Mary's College on Saturday, Oct. 21 she broke past the 1,000 kill plateau and now currently has1,047 kills to her credit.

ABOVE THE NET: Sophomore Elaina Renius' seven solo blocks against Saint Mary's College on Oct. 21 ranks second in the GU single match Top 10, just one behind Kelley Cunningham who had nine solo blocks against Eastern Washington in 1989.

SECOND TIME AROUND: Gonzaga University junior Becky Jones collected her second career 20/20 double-double Oct. 21 at Saint Mary's College. Jones finished with a team-high 21 kills along with 20 digs. Her only other 20/20 double-double came during her sophomore season when she collected 22 kills and 20 digs against New Mexico on Sept. 10, 2005.

MOVING UP THE CAREER RECORD BOOK: Gonzaga University junior classmates Heather Dunn, Becky Jones, and Briawna Mueller are each inching up the GU career record book. Dunn is currently fifth in assists (2,293), while Jones is sixth in total attempts (3,027). Mueller is fifth in total blocks (357) and block assists (287) and tied for sixth in solo blocks (71).

SINGLE-SEASON RECORDS: Gonzaga University juniors Becky Jones and Briawna Mueller have earned a spot in the Bulldogs single-match Top 10. Jones is tied for sixth in digs (3 games) with 20 (vs. UMBC, Sept. 8) and tied for eighth in total attempts with 65 (vs. North Dakota State, Aug. 26). Mueller's 10 blocks against Portland State on Sept. 2 ties her for eighth in the single-match Top 10.

DOUBLE-DOUBLE: Outside hitter Becky Jones has had a strong junior season for Gonzaga University. Jones has had double-digit kills in 19 matches and double-digit digs in 15 matches. She also has accumulated 12 double-doubles this season; including one 20/20 double-double. On the year, Jones leads the Bulldogs in kills (368) and is second in digs (2293).

400-PLUS CLUB: Junior Becky Jones needs 32 more kills for her second-straight season of 400 or more kills. Her 471 kills in 2005 ranks 6th on the all-time GU list; the 10th player in GU history with 400 or more.

A STEADY SETTER: Junior Heather Dunn began her second season as the starting setter for Gonzaga University in 2006. She has dished out 30 or more assists in 22 out of the Bulldogs 25 matches this season. Dunn has broken her career-high assists four times this season. She dished out a then career-high 61 assists in GU's heartbreaking 3-2 loss to South Dakota State, topped that when she passed out 62 assists in a 3-2 loss to North Dakota State on Sept. 9 and topped it again when she had 64 assists in a 3-2 win over Idaho Oct. 3. Then on Oct. 21 at Saint Mary's, Dunn dished out a career-high 66 assists in a thrilling 3-2 victory. Her career high coming into the season was 59 dished out against UC Davis on Sept. 10, 2005. Dunn is currently averaging 11.22 assists per game.

CAREER-HIGHS: Multiple Gonzaga University players have broken personal career-highs this season. Junior Megan Thompson collected a career-high 15 digs against Weber State. Junior Briawna Mueller served-up a career-high five aces against Weber State and against Santa Clara and collected a career-high nine digs against UMBC. Junior Alecia Douglas had a career-high four service aces against Gardner-Webb. Sophomore Francis Garcia tallied a career-high 10 digs at South Dakota State, at Portland and against Loyola Marymount. Sophomore Tianna Tuatagaloa finished with a career-high 11 kills and four aces against North Dakota State. Sophomore Paige Dillingham had a career-high 12 digs against North Dakota State.

HEAD COACH Kip Yoshimura: Kip Yoshimura, who enters his fifth year as Gonzaga University's head coach, returns a strong squad for the 2006 season. Yoshimura has compiled a 22-96 record during his first four years with the Bulldogs. A former assistant coach at Gonzaga during the 1992 season, Yoshimura has complied a 273-168 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.

A FAMILIAR FACE ON THE SIDELINES: Kip Yoshimura has added one new coach to his staff in 2006. Abby Cullen returns to her alma mater as an assistant coach after one season as an assistant coach at Central Washington University. Cullen, a four-year starter for the Bulldogs from 2000-03, ranks in the top 10 in the Zags career record book for block assists (3rd, 341), block solos (3rd, 87), total blocks (3rd, 428), total kills (4th, 1,140), attack attempts (7th, 2,917) and games played (8th, 400). She also holds the single-match record for total blocks in a game with 15 and assisted blocks with 13; both recorded against Portland in 2002.

LIVE ON THE INTERNET: All Gonzaga University home matches will be available via Gametracker on the internet at http://www.gozags.com. Check the Gonzaga web site for all Gametracker links.