No. 2 Stanford Exacts Revenge on No. 7 Cal with 3-0 Sweep

11/14/2008

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BERKELEY, Calif. - The No. 7-ranked California volleyball team (20-5, 10-4 Pac-10) fell in three sets (25-23, 25-16, 25-20) to No. 2 Stanford (22-3, 13-1 Pac-10) today at Haas Pavilion before a record crowd of 3,979 fans. The Golden Bears surrendered a .319 attack rate (46k, 10e, 113att) to the Cardinal, who assumes full control of the Pacific-10 conference race. Cal was led by junior middle hitter Mindi Wiley, who registered 10 kills (2e, 15att, .533) while Stanford senior outside hitter Cynthia Barboza attacked at a .419 rate as she logged 13 kills without an error on 31 attempts and took home a double-double by adding 18 digs on the night.

The Cardinal directed their attack to sophomore setter Carli Lloyd, who put up 10 digs with 32 assists to record her ninth double-double match of the season. The Bears were plagued by poor passing and managed just a .167 attack percentage with 41 kills (20e, 126att), their second lowest output of the season. Stanford stuffed the Cal offense by putting up 11.0 total team blocks. Junior libero Kristen Kathan led the Bears with 18 digs while senior outside hitter Am'ra Solomon (4e, 33att, .152) and junior outside hitter Hana Cutura (7e, 35att) each put up nine kills apiece. Stanford senior middle blocker Foluke Akinradewo upheld her Pac-10 player of week honors by posting 12 kills (1e, 18att, .611) while logging eight digs and six kills.

The Bears fell behind quickly in the third and final set and found themselves facing a nine-point deficit at 14-5. Two consecutive kills by Solomon pulled Cal to within four at 15-11 but the Cardinal answered back with a series of blocks. Lloyd and Wiley connected on a slide play to trim the Stanford advantage to one point at 19-18; but that was as close as the Bears would get as the Cardinal mounted one last strong push to hold the Bears to two points, leaving Cal in its wake, 25-20. Stanford had 15 kills in the third set (3e, 42att, .286) but was able to hold Cal to a .188 attack rate with 16 kills (7e, 48att).

Stanford left no breathing room in the second set as they ran out to a 17-10 advantage by posting four big blocks. The Cardinal never trailed in the set, getting out to a seven point lead again at 23-16. Solomon went up for an attack but her shot went long to set the Cardinal up with set point at 24-16. The Bears couldn't find their groove as a Cardinal serve landed untouched in the middle of the court to end the second set, 25-16. The Bears put up 12 kills (7e, 40att, .125) in the set and gave up a .387 attack percentage to Stanford (14k, 2e, 31att).

Facing a 23-16 deficit in the first set, the Bears took off on a big run to pull within a point at 24-23 but the Cardinal put the set away with the final kill. Stanford put up 17 kills (5e, 40att, .300) and held the Bears to 13 kills (6e, 38att, .184) in the first.

The Bears close out regular season home matches as they host UCLA (Nov. 21) and USC (Nov. 22) next weekend at Haas Pavilion. Both matches start at 5 p.m. Cal will honor its seniors in pre-match ceremonies against the Trojans. The match will also be broadcast live by Fox Sports.

Article courtesy of California athletics

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