Aug. 25, 2007
BOISE, Idaho - With an impressive performance Saturday night, the No. 24 Santa Clara Broncos captured the Boise State Invitational title, defeating host, Boise State, 30-27, 30-26, 30-24 to earn the 3-0 sweep. SCU finished the tournament 3-0 with victories over Cal State Fullerton, Texas-San Antonio and the Broncos of Boise State. Sophomore Lindsy Evans walked away with tournament Most Valuable Player honors after racking up 47 kills in three matches, while senior Crystal Matich was named to the all-tournament team. Matich finished the tournament with 126 assists.
While not hitting as efficiently as the first two matches, the Broncos played a steady third match against Boise State to take home the tournament championship. A balanced attack led SCU in the finale, as three players reached double-digits in kills and two players had more than 10 digs. Freshman Krista Kelley had a double-double to lead the way, connecting on 17 kills and recording 13 digs. Junior Brittany Lowe and Evans followed up with 14 and 11 kills respectively and senior Caroline Walter once again had a big night with 17 digs.
In the opening game, SCU was down in the early going by a 7-4 margin, but some strong serving by sophomore Lauryn Dowd got the Broncos back on track. Dowd started off a stretch of three straight points with an ace, followed by kills by Kelley and Matich. However, the home team would not go away and the match went back and forth into the late stages. Boise State took a 23-22 lead, but Jon Wallace's squad dug down deep to get the lead back and eventually pull out the 30-27 win. A kill from Lowe broke a 27-all deadlock as SCU won the final three points of the game.
Game two would prove to be another nail biter in Boise with SCU eventually earning the 30-26 win. Neither team could gain more than a three-point advantage through most of game. Eventually the two teams found themselves tied at 25 points apiece. However, some good serving from Dowd and some solid defense put SCU in the driver's seat at 29-26. Lowe then put away Boise State with a kill on an assist from Matich.
Trailing 2-0 in games, the home side would not back down in the final game. Boise State stormed out to a 10-7 lead to put the pressure on SCU. Just as they did in the first two games, the Broncos responded and tied the score at 10. They then pulled out to a 20-16 lead. Evans, Lowe and Kelley took the Broncos home with eight kills in the Broncos final 10 points. Kelley had two straight to end the match and win the tournament for the Broncos.
Santa Clara heads to Florida next weekend to take on North Carolina State, Georgia Southern and Florida at the Florida Invitational in Gainesville.