UCSB Hopes Turkey Time Turns into Tourney Time

UCSB Hopes Turkey Time Turns into Tourney Time

• The Schedule
Friday, November 25, 2011 at 7:00 p.m.
SDSU Turkey Time Tournament
UC Santa Barbara at San Diego State (17-9)
at SDSU's Peterson Gym (3,668)
Series record vs. the Aztecs – 19-18
Streak – Won 2
Last time out vs. the Aztecs – W, 3-2 (9/18/10)

Saturday, November 26, 2011 at 4:00 p.m.
SDSU Turkey Time Tournament
UC Santa Barbara vs. TCU (23-7)
at SDSU's Peterson Gym (3,668)
Series record vs. the Horned Frogs – First-ever meeting
Streak – N/A
Last time out vs. the Horned Frogs – N/A

• Quality Quintet
Five UC Santa Barbara players were honored by the Big West on Tuesday when the league announced its all-conference picks. Libero Chelsey Lowe, middle blocker Lily Lopez and opposite Stacey Schmidt were all named to the All-Big West First Team – the third straight time for Schmidt to be named a First Teamer. Outside hitter Leah Sully was an Honorable Mention selection and setter Hanna Nielson was named to the All-Big West Freshman Team.

• Six Pack of Wins
UCSB is riding a six-match winning streak in which they've lost just four overall sets. The last time the Gauchos had a six-match winning streak came in 2009 when they had six from Sept. 16 to Sept. 26. The last time UCSB won more than six straight was in 2005 when they rattled off eight straight from Nov. 4 through Nov. 26.

• Eyes on the Prize
With 624 total digs on  the season, Chelsey Lowe ranks second in single-season school history behind her predecessor, Leigh Stephenson, who picked up 650 digs in the 2007 season. Following this weekend's matches vs. San Diego State and TCU, Lowe could become the school's all-time leader as her average of 5.38 digs per set indicates. That mark leads the Big West and ranks her 26th in the nation.

• Top 10 Talent
As Chelsey Lowe continues her assault on the single-season digs record, she is also inching her way up the career charts at UCSB. With 1,378 career digs in her three seasons as a Gaucho – she transferred from USF before the 2009 season – Lowe ranks eighth all-time in school history after passing Brooke Niles (1999-2002). She needs 55 digs to surpass Erica Menzel (2000-03) and 138 more digs to overcome Emily Hendrickson (2003-06) in Gaucho history.

• They Can Dig It
As a team UCSB is averaging 17.83 digs per set, which ranks the Gauchos first in the Big West and 21st nationally in the stat. UCSB also leads the conference in digs per league matches with 18.83. Chelsey Lowe and Leah Sully each rank in the top-10 in the Big West in overall digs, one of just two sets of teammates to do so.

• RPI Report
Despite winning both matches last week, UCSB's Ratings Percentage Index (RPI) actually dropped. The Gauchos are 56th in the weekly rankings, second in the conference behind Long Beach State (44).

• Double Digit Delight
The Gauchos have secured double-digit wins in Big West play for the third straight season.

• Double Dipper
In 21 of the Gauchos' 29 matches this season, Leah Sully has recorded a double-double, including in 16 of her last 20 matches. On the season the sophomore from Irvine, Calif. is averaging a team-leading 3.00 kills and is second with 3.77 digs per set. Sully is also fourth in the conference with her 0.32 ace per set average.

• Lily Lopez: Leading Lady
Senior middle blocker Lily Lopez paces the team with her .340 hitting percentage, ranking her second amongst her conference mates and 65th in the nation.  In her past five matches the native of  Yorba Linda, Calif. is hitting .429 (43-7-84). On the season Lopez is averaging 2.27 kills per set and 0.83 blocks per set.

• About Schmidt
All-American Stacey Schmidt ranks eighth in the Big West with her .290 hitting percentage and is fifth with her 0.31 aces per set average. The senior is second on the team with 2.97 kills and 0.91 blocks per set.