October 20, 2007

UCSB Loses in Five at Cal State Northridge

Oct. 20, 2007

Box Score

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - For the second time this season the UCSB women's volleyball team went five games with Cal State Northridge and came out on the losing end. The Matadors took a 21-30, 30-16, 21-30, 30-26, 15-12 victory Saturday night at the Matadome, marking the first time that Santa Barbara has been swept by Northridge in a season series.

Santa Barbara dropped to 7-14 overall and 2-7 in the Big West, while Northridge moved to 8-14 and 5-5 with the win. The Matadors had lost their previous two matches coming into tonight's tilt.

Both teams attacked poorly as CSUN hit .165 (58-29-176) and UCSB ran its hitting percentage to just .118 (62-40-187). The Gauchos had trouble hitting around the block as the Matadors had 23.5 stuffs at the net, 13 of those coming from freshman middle Lynda Morales.

UCSB hit .308 (16-4-39) in game three, a figure that would be matched by CSUN in game four (15-3-39). That was the highest attack percentage either team reached all night.

The loss came despite a match-high 20 kills from junior outside Lauren McLaughlin. She also posted a team-high 18 digs and had four blocks, but swung at just .156 (20-10-64) for the match. Sophomore outside Rebecca Saraceno also recorded a double-double with 16 kills and 10 digs while hitting .044 (16-14-45). Senior middle Brett Quirarte and freshman outside Charlene DeHoog each had 11 kills. Quirarte and freshman middle blocker Kasey Kipp both totaled five blocks and freshman setter Dana Vargas amassed 43 assists and 12 digs.

CSUN was paced by freshman outside hitter Alex Johnson's 17 kills and .359 (17-3-39) attack percentage. She also had nine digs and five blocks. Freshman outside Brittany Williams followed with 16 kills and sophomore setter Angela Hupp had a double-double with 10 put-aways and 12 digs while also recording nine blocks. Defensively, junior libero Amy Hultner had a match-best 21 digs.

In the deciding game, UCSB held a two-point lead at 10-8 following a kill by Saraceno. However, CSUN scored the next four points to take a 12-10 lead and the Matadors would not trail for the rest of the game. The spree started with a Johnson kill that was followed by a block, a service ace and another block. Johnson was in on both of the blocks. Saraceno and Hupp traded kills, making the score 13-11 in favor of CSUN. After a Gaucho timeout, McLaughlin placed a ball to get Santa Barbara back within one point, but the Matadors closed out the match with two straight points - a kill by Williams and blocks from Morales and Hupp.

The Gauchos trailed just twice in game one's 30-21 win. Northridge held one-point leads at 2-1 and 8-7 before UCSB took command with a 5-0 run to take a 12-8 lead capped by a Quirarte-Saraceno block. The Matadors pulled within three at 13-10 following a Hupp kill but Northridge would get no closer the rest of the game.

Northridge led from wire-to-wire in game two to even the match. The Matadors scored nine of the first 11 points forcing a Gaucho timeout. Following the break, UCSB pulled to within three at 10-7 after Morales was blocked by McLaughlin and Kipp. But on the next points a Johnson-Morales block on Saraceno propelled Northridge on a 6-0 run which opened up a 17-7 Matador lead. Northridge eventually built the lead to 15 points (25-10) before taking game two 30-16. After posting 3.5 team blocks in game one, the Matadors notched an impressive 11 team blocks in game two.

The see-saw match continued in game three as the Gauchos again trailed just once on their way to a 30-21 win. After hitting -.200 in game two, UCSB bounced back with its .308 pace in the third frame.

Game four opened with the Gauchos taking the first point on a McLaughlin kill. But officials ruled UCSB was out of rotation giving the Matadors the point. Northridge used the momentum swing to take a 4-1 lead capped by a Hupp kill. UCSB battled back to take the lead at 6-5 after a Jessica Welch ace and the Gauchos held the lead until a Johnson kill knotted things at 8-8. The Matadors got another kill from Johnson along with a McLaughlin hitting error to take a 10-8 lead. A Saraceno kill tied the game for the last time at 11-11 before a 5-1 run put the Matadors on top to stay at 16-12. UCSB closed to within two four times down the stretch but Northridge held on 30-26.

CSUN out-lasted UCSB by scores of 30-24, 16-30, 25-30, 30-27, 15-13 on Sept. 21 at the Thunderdome.

After playing its last three matches on the road, UCSB will come home to host UC Davis on Oct. 26 and Pacific on Oct. 27. Both matches are scheduled for a 7 p.m. start at the Thunderdome. The Gauchos swept the Aggies while the Tigers blanked UCSB back in late September.


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