Oct. 6, 2007
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. - The Bronco volleyball team fell 3-0 (30-23, 30-26, 30-25) in a hard-fought battle to the Dons of the University of San Francisco Saturday afternoon in West Coast Conference action. With the loss, Santa Clara is now 11-8 on the season and 3-1 in league play, while USF improves to 13-6 overall and 2-1 in the WCC.
The victory for the Dons ended a 17 year winning streak for the Broncos. USF last swept SCU in 1989 at the Leavey Center.
For the Broncos, Brittany Lowe and Krista Kelley recorded 10 kills each, while Lowe tallied another double-double with 12 digs. Lauryn Dowd chipped in with seven kills and tied the team-best four total blocks with junior Nichole Clark. Posting a solid effort in the back row was senior libero Caroline Walters, who led the match with 18 digs.
A successful attack from Kelley put the Broncos on the scoreboard in the first game and then a block assist from Lindsy Evans and Dowd knotted the score 3-3. However, the Dons jumped to a quick 10 point lead, 16-6, on kills from Addie Webster, Alix Gombos and Kristin Hasselberg. After a Bronco timeout, SCU rallied behind service efforts from Walters to narrow the gap. A kill from Dowd brought Santa Clara within six points, 29-23, but that was as close as SCU would get as USF finished game one, 30-23.
USF once again took a solid lead in the second game, 7-1, on points from Webster, Hasselberg and Gombos, but SCU fought hard to tie the score 12-12 on a kill from Dowd. A Walters' service ace gave the Broncos a slight edge, 13-12, but the Dons tied the score once again, 13-13. The teams went point-for-point until a service ace from Sarah Mandala gave USF a three-point advantage, 20-17. Although the Dons continued to control the scoreboard, the Broncos did not make the win easy as they racked on nine more points on strong efforts from Evans, Kelley and Clark. Yet, USF won game two, 30-26 on a kill from Hasselberg.
With the Dons leading 2-0 in games, the Broncos opened the third game with increased energy and persistence. The teams went head-to-head throughout the beginning of the game, knotting the score 14 times. A USF service error tied the score, 19-19 and a block assist from Matich and Dowd gave SCU a one-point edge, 20-19. Yet, the Dons answer right back and took a three-point lead on an ace from Haley Carroll, 25-22. Santa Clara continued to apply pressure at the net, but a kill from Hasselberg brought the match to a close, 30-25.
For USF, Gombos registered a match-high 13 kills, while Mandela and Hasselberg chipped in with 11 each. Gombos also led the match with seven total blocks.
Santa Clara returns to action on Tuesday, Oct. 9 against Sacramento State. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m., at the Hornets Nest in Sacramento, Calif.