Sept. 14, 2007
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - In its third match-up of ranked opponents this season, the No. 22 Santa Clara volleyball team fell 3-0 (30-20, 30-19, 30-25) to No. 11 California in the second match of the 2007 SCU Volleyball Invitational. With the loss the Broncos dropped to 7-4 on the season and 0-1 in this weekend's action, while the Bears improved to 9-1 overall and 1-0 in the tournament.
"Cal played really well tonight," said Broncos head coach Jon Wallace. "They are a well organized team, and they know and feel that they can win a match. Cal will definitely make some noise this year. We on the other hand are still developing and working things out. It has to click for us how to maintain the good level of play we develop in a game for a longer period of time. We still break down too fast."
Sophomore outside hitter Nina Sevastopoulos and senior setter Crystal Matich led SCU in kills, posting six each. Matich also dished out 25 assists and two service aces. Also lead the Broncos was senior libero Caroline Walters, who collected a match-high nine digs.
Game one saw the Bears jump to a 9-3 lead on serving efforts from Morgan Beck. Yet, the Broncos rallied behind the serving of Lindsy Evans to produce a 5-1 run on points from Sevastopoulos, 13-11. Santa Clara continued to fight to close the gap, but Cal held its age and advanced to a seven-point lead on a kill from Hana Cutura, 22-15. The Golden Bears ended game one, 30-20.
Santa Clara seemed to find its groove in the beginning of game two, opening with a 3-0 lead on the service of Matich. Yet, Cal rallied back to knot the score, 4-4, with a service ace of their own. The teams battled point for point, until a 7-0 run gave the Bears a 12-5 lead. SCU once again tried to tie the score, but the closest they could get was 22-14 on a kill from Evans. The Bears closed out the second game, 30-19.
Returning from the break, the Broncos seemed reenergized and opened with a 4-1 lead on points from freshman Krista Kelley. But the Bears knotted the score, 4-4, and once again the teams went head-to-head to take control of the scoreboard. The score was tied 10 times, the last being at 15-15, on a Cal error. Even though the Bears attempted to widen the gap, the Broncos remained strong and kept the score as tight as they could. A Cal service error brought SCU within two-point, 24-22, but that is as close as they would get as Cal ended the match with a 30-25 game three victory.
For Cal, Kat Reilly registered a match-high 10 kills and an impressive .909 hitting percentage (10-0-11), while Ellen Orchard and Cutura posted seven and six total blocks, respectively.
The Broncos return to action on Saturday, Sept. 15 with day two action at the 2007 SCU Volleyball Invitational. Santa Clara will face UC Santa Barbara at 7 p.m., at the Leavey Center. Prior to the Broncos match, Notre Dame and Cal will go head to head at 4:30 p.m.