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Women's Volleyball

Pair Of ESPN3 Matches Highlights Busy Week

10/29/2018

Big West Women's Volleyball Release - Week 11

Up Next:  UC Irvine and UC Riverside have loaded schedule this week with three matches on their dockets.  The Anteaters open at Cal Poly Tuesday night and then visit UC Riverside (11/2) and Cal State Fullerton (11/3) over the weekend. The Highlanders visit CSUN (10/30) in a midweek contest and then host UC Irvine Friday and UC Davis Saturday.

Hawai’i is featured on ESPN3 twice this week.  First up is a showdown versus CSUN Friday night at The Matadome and is followed by a clash with Long Beach State at The Pyramid.  First serve for both contests is scheduled for 7:00 pm.

Weekly Flashback:
  Last week the conference’s top two teams squared off with undefeated No. 11 Cal Poly visiting Hawai’i, who had one loss.  The Rainbow Wahine outlasted the Mustangs, 3-2, to hand them their first Big West loss of the year. The following night UC Santa Barbara swept Hawai’i for the first time in over 25 years. It also marked UCSB’s first win over Hawai’i since 2013.

UC Irvine and UC Davis picked up a pair of wins after downing both Long Beach State and CSUN.  UC Riverside earned its second victory of the season over Cal State Fullerton.

Cal Poly’s Home Win Streak On The Line:
While Hawai’i snapped Cal Poly’s 26-match conference win streak Friday with a 3-2 victory, the Mustangs still have a record-breaking home win streak of 18 matches in tact. The record is put on the line this week as Cal Poly entertains the UC Irvine Anteaters Tuesday evening before visiting UC Santa Barbara Friday.

UCSB’s Power Hitter:
Junior Lindsay Ruddins is currently sporting a 6.05 kills per set mark to rank second in the nation.  If the season were to end today, she would rank third all-time in the Big West Conference for highest season kills average.

Aggie Duo Eyeing School Marks:
Senior Emily Allen is inching her way to the 1,000 kills-1,000 digs club with 974 career kills and 974 career digs.  Nine UCD players grace the 1,000 clubs in each category, with just three former Aggies appearing on each: Candy Lench (1989-92), Jill Changaris (1993-96) and Kelly Gaudino (2000-03). Senior Malia Bolko has 1,770 career digs, second in school history and 61 shy of catching Avreeta Singh (2006-09) for the top slot in UC Davis annals. 

Petrachi Crushes UCSB Digs Record: 
Senior libero Emilia Petrachi has already tallied 1,856 scoops to own the top spot in UCSB history and sits fifth in the Big West record book.  She needs 51 more digs to surpass Pacific’s Julie Magud for fourth place. This is the second time in six years that head coach Nicole Lantagne Welch has witnessed this record being broken. It was in UCSB’s 2013 regular season finale, during her first year at the helm of the Gauchos, when she watched Leah Sully leapfrog past Kristin Nelson for the most in program history at the time.

Owens Climbing CSUN’s Kills Ranking:
Last week, senior Aeryn Owens moved up to second  on the CSUN career kills list with 1,490. Owens opened the 2018 season ranked 11th in school history. Owens now trails the record-leader, Laura Walter, who holds the CSUN record for kills with 1,694 from 1998-2001, by 204 kills.

Cal Poly Picked To Repeat As Big West Champion:
After capturing its first Big West title in 10 years, Cal Poly has been selected to repeat as the Big West Conference women’s volleyball champion after claiming five first-place votes en route to a 77 point total, as voted on by the nine head coaches. The University of Hawai’i secured the remaining four first-place votes to lock down the second spot with 75 points.  UC Irvine followed in the third slot with 62 points, while Long Beach State  registered 48 points to rank fourth and UC Santa Barbara was close behind in fifth place with 45 points. The Aggies of UC Davis nabbed 38 points for the sixth spot and was followed by CSUN (30), UC Riverside (18) and Cal State Fullerton (12).

The Mustangs are coming off a year where they posted the program’s best overall record of 27-3, a perfect 16-0 Big West Conference mark and an undefeated home record for the first time since 2007.  Led by 2017 AVCA Pacific North Coach of the Year Sam Crosson, CP broke the Top 25 and posted its first NCAA Tournament win since 2007.  The Mustangs concluded 2017 ranked in the nation’s Top 10 in kills per set, assists, win/loss percentage and hitting percentage. 

In head coach Robyn Ah Mow-Santos’ rookie season at Hawai’i, she led them to a 20-8 overall record and a 14-2 conference mark which advanced them to their 36th NCAA Tournament appearance. Hawai’i is on a quest to capture its fifth conference title in seven years and will rely on 2018 All-Big West First Teamers outside hitter McKenna Granato and setter Norene Iosia to lead the way.

Securing the third spot is UC Irvine, who finished third with a 10-6 league mark and a 24-8 overall record, which tied the school record for wins. The Anteaters advanced to the quarterfinals of the National Invitational Volleyball Championship, falling to Texas Tech, 3-1.

Volleyball Slated For ESPN3:
The Big West Conference announced its fall schedule for the women’s volleyball, which commences Tuesday, Sept. 18 when UC Riverside visits Long Beach State at The Walter Pyramid. IN all, 10 matches were scheduled to broadcast live on ESPN3.  Below is a list of the remaining Big West volleyball matches.  
Nov. 2 Hawai'i at CSUN 7 pm
Nov. 3 Hawai'i at Long Beach State 7 pm
Nov. 8 UC Santa Barbara at UC Irvine 7 pm
Nov. 10 Cal Poly at UC Irvine 7 pm

Celebrating 50/35:
The 2018-19 season marks the 50th anniversary for men’s sports in the Big West Conference, and the 35th for women’s.  All season long the Big West Conference will celebrate the history of all 16 conference-sponsored sports.

Did You Know?

• Long Beach State has paced the conference in hitting percentage 21 of the 34 years the Big West Conference has sponsored women’s volleyball. The Beach had a seven-year streak of owning the top spot from 2005-2011.  Their highest clip of .359 was tallied in 2001.

• Twenty-five teams have boasted a 30-plus win season over the past 34 seasons of competition.  Leading the charge is former member Pacific, who registered a 39-record in 1986, the year the Tigers won their second straight National Championship.
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