Gauchos Close Out Regular Season at UC Riverside
Nov. 19, 2010
Saturday, November 20, 2010 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara at UC Riverside (2-28, 0-14)
at UCR's Student Recreation Center (3,200)
Series record vs. the Highlanders - 25-0
Streak - Won 25
Last time out vs. the Highlanders - W, 3-0 (11/2/10)
Live stats available by clicking here
The Pursuit of Perfection
UC Santa Barbara's lone opponent this week, UC Riverside, has never defeated the Gauchos. UCSB is a perfect 25-0 against the Highlanders. Since joining the Big West in 2001, UCR has only won three sets against the Gauchos over that time.
The Fine Fifteen
The Gauchos have secured their 15th win this season, guaranteeing that the program has reached that mark for the 28th time in the past 30 seasons.
UCSB is No. 57 in the latest NCAA Ratings Percentage Index, up one spot from last week. UCSB is the fourth-highest Big West team behind Long Beach State at No. 25, Cal State Fullerton at No. 28 and Cal Poly at No. 56. The Gauchos' opponent this week, UCR, has an RPI of 261.
Senior setter Dana Vargas ranks 54th nationally - and fourth in the Big West - with her average of 10.58 assists per game and the 2009 All-American keeps climbing the school's all-time assists charts. With 4,667 career assists, Vargas ranks third all-time at UCSB. The Seal Beach, Calif. native has passed 1,000 assists for the third time in four seasons (with 1,143). In conference play Vargas has been even sharper, handing out 10.88 assists per set, which is fourth among conference players. The Seal Beach, Calif. native has posted 12 double-doubles this season and is fifth on the Gauchos with a 2.34 digs per set average, which will establish a new career-high. Her previous best was a 2.15 dig per set average she tallied during her freshman season.
Junior opposite/middle blocker Stacey Schmidt has been the team's best attacker in conference play, averaging 3.08 kills per set, which is seventh in the conference. Schmidt is swinging at a robust .320 clip, placing her sixth in the conference - one spot above teammate Kasey Kipp. Schmidt has already reached career-highs this season in kills and attempts and the Huntington Beach, Calif. native has also been a force at the net, leading the Gauchos with her 87 total blocks - an average of 0.81 per set.
Need a Pick-Me-Up?
As a team UCSB is averaging 16.02 digs per set, which is fourth in the conference while the team's 17.17 dig per set average in conference play puts them on top of all the other Big West teams. UCSB has five players averaging over 2.34 digs per set this season.
Senior outside hitter Charlene DeHoog has recorded double-digit kills in 17 matches this season and she has led the team in putaways 14 times this season. DeHoog ranks eighth in the conference with her 3.05 kills per set average while her 2.81 digs per set are second on the team. The senior has a team-high 1,124 attacks this season, which are already a career high. DeHoog's team-high 329 kills are already a career-best as are her 304 digs.
A Sherr Thing
Kara Sherrard has been a very pleasant surprise for the Gauchos this season. Taking the place of Leah Sully, who tore her anterior cruciate ligament in the first match of the season, Sherrard is third on the team in both kills (2.38 per set) and digs (2.67 per set). The Lancaster, Calif. native has recorded double-digit kills in eight of her past 10 matches and nine or more digs in 10 of her past 11 matches. The redshirt freshman has tallied nine double-doubles after recording 10 kills and 15 digs against Pacific last weekend.
The Lowe Down
Entering the second set of Saturday's match vs. Pacific as a libero for the first time since early September, junior Chelsey Lowe was outstanding. The Yorba Linda, Calif. native picked up a career-high 30 digs in the defeat, helping the Gauchos get a season-best 91 digs on the night.
Win One for the Kipper
Senior Kasey Kipp is enjoying her most effective season for her career. Kipp is hitting at a .314 clip ranking her seventh in the Big West. That is easily her best in a season after hitting a previous-high .260 last year. The middle blocker from Newport Beach, Calif. is averaging 1.83 kills per set - fourth on the team - which will also establish a career-high while tallying a UCSB-high 0.93 blocks per set and 18 solo blocks. In conference action Kipp is averaging 1.07 blocks per set, which places her seventh in the Big West.
Pleading the Fifth
UCSB opened the season 5-0 in five-set matches, however the team has dropped three of its past four matches that go to five games.
She Can Dig It
Freshman Kelly Heenan has saw her streak of double-digit digs in 17 straight matches end when she tallied just nine vs. Pacific. However Heenan has still tallied double-digit digs in 20 of her past 23 matches. The Costa Mesa, Calif. native is averaging 3.83 digs per set overall this season, which is seventh in the Big West. But in conference play, Heenan has been even more impressive with 4.33 digs per set in conference play, placing her sixth in the Big West. Heenan has led UCSB in digs in 19 of 28 matches this season.
Four UCSB players - DeHoog, Lowe, Schmidt and Vargas - have seen court time in all of the Gauchos' 108 sets this season. Sherrard and Heenan are the others who have topped the century mark, playing in 104 and 105 sets, respectively.
The L Word
UCSB's 13 losses represent the fourth time in the past five seasons that the Gauchos have hit double-digits in losses. Prior to the 2006 season the 2001 squad was the last team to drop more than 10 matches.
Stay in Touch With the Gauchos
UCSB players are frequently updating Gaucho fans about the team through the school's website - UCSBgauchos.com, or by clicking here. Defensive specialist Katie Ring will regularly write in her "Ring it On" blog and libero Chelsey Lowe provides constant Twitter updates. Follow her at twitter.com/ucsbvolleyball.
The Intercollegiate Athletics Ticket Office has two parking spaces adjacent to the building and is now open on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., making it easier than ever for fans to purchase tickets. The two parking spots, designated specifically for the Ticket Office, are also available during weekday hours, which are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
The Gaucho Fund, launched as part of the Dare to Be Great strategic plan, is UCSB Athletics' annual giving program to provide vital funding support for scholarships, academic success and leadership development for Gaucho student-athletes. The Gaucho Fund is the anchor to the Dare to Be Great campaign.
GKids is the official kids club of UCSB Athletics. Members receive a free GKids t-shirt, free admittance to tons of Gaucho games, opportunities to be ball boys and girls at games, a special birthday greeting from Olie (the GKids mascot) and much, much more! For more information on GKids, or to become a member, please click here.