Santa Clara returns home to host two matches this weekend at the Leavey Center, including its DIG PINK match on Saturday. First on the schedule is LMU on Thurs., Oct. 20 at 6 pm. The Broncos are 7-11 and 2-5 in the WCC while LMU enters the match 10-10 and 3-4 in the WCC.
Santa Clara will then host USF on Sat., Oct. 22 at 1 pm as part of Dig Pink, a match hosted to raise funds for Breast Cancer Awareness. USF is 13-7 and 5-2 in the WCC prior to its match vs. Saint Mary's on Thurs., Oct. 20.
Santa Clara will give away pink rally towels to the first 250 fans in attendance and also give away pink Ruff Rider t-shirts to the first 50 Ruff Riders. They will also have a donation box for donations to Dig Pink!
Santa Clara is 29-31 all-time vs. LMU. The Broncos have lost two in a row to the Lions after sweeping four straight. Santa Clara is 57-10 all-time vs. USF. The Broncos lost 3-1 at USF on Oct. 8. The two teams split last season with each winning on their own home floor.
On the season Santa Clara has relied on Katherine Douglas' offensive production as the RS sophomore is first in kills with 3.15 kpg, second in service aces with 0.14 sapg, fourth in blocks with 0.32 bpg and fifth in hitting at .208. Dana Knudsen has also shown her ability, hitting .305 with 2.07 kpg and 0.56 bpg. Tanya Schmidt contributes 2.18 kpg, hitting .292 with a team-best 0.66 bpg. Kaleigh Durket adds 2.48 kpg and a .221 hitting percentage. Setters Alexandra Palmer and Alyssa Anderson are the team leaders in assists with 6.04 apg and 5.43 apg, respectively. Libero Bridget O'Hara's 3.68 dpg place her first on the team and sixth in the conference.
Santa Clara is second in assists with 12.97 apg (934 total) and third in kills with 13.69 kpg (986 total). In WCC matches, Santa Clara is fourth in both assists/s (12.03 apg, 349 total) and kills (12.76 kpg, 370 total). Against SMU on Sept. 17 Santa Clara set the league highs for most kills in a single match with 79 and most assists in a match with 77.
Individually Dana Knudsen is fifth with a .305 hitting percentage and Tanya Schmidt is eighth, hitting .292. Katherine Douglas is seventh in kills with 3.15 kpg (227 total). Bridget O'Hara is sixth in digs with 3.68 dpg (239 total).
Loyola Marymount's season has been somewhat inconsistent through their first 20 contests. After starting 2-0 with wins against Cal State Fullerton and Quinnipiac, they dropped consecutive matches to No. 11 UCLA and Oregon State. The Lions then swept their next three matches, lost four in a row without winning a set, and rebounded for three straight wins which brought their record to 8-6. They currently stand at 10-10 and 3-4 in the WCC after recent loses at San Francisco and at then-No. 17 San Diego.
Against San Diego freshman Caitlin DeWitt posted a career-high tying 17 kills to lead the LMU attack. Fellow freshman Litara Keil had 10 kills and hit .321 on 28 attacks. Senior Jasmine Rankins was held to six kills but managed three of LMU's 10 service aces. Libero Betsi Metter continued her strong season, collecting 18 digs and three aces. Olivia Bailey dished-out 40 assists as the Lions hit .191 as a team over the four sets.
In their previous match, third-place USF stymied the LMU attack holding the team to a season-low .048 hitting percentage winning the match in straight sets. Rankins had seven kills while DeWitt and Keil had five each. Bailey finished with 17 assists and Metter added 13 digs.
Rankins has been an offensive catalyst for the Lions leading the team in 3.20 kpg. She is also second with 0.38 sapg and fourth in attack percentage at .198. Hensley has also contributed significantly as she is second with 2.33 kpg, second in hitting at .209, and fourth with 0.44 bpg. Keil averages a team high .240 hitting percentage and leads the team in blocks with 0.97 bpg in addition to her 2.27 kpg and 0.23 sapg.
Bailey is first with 9.67 apg and hits .202. Metter is the team leader in service aces and digs with 0.41 and 4.83, respectively.
Loyola Marymount leads the league in service aces with 1.56 sapg (111 total) and is third in digs with 15.23 dpg (1081 total). In WCC matches, Loyola Marymount is third in digs with 14.78 dpg (410 total) and is fifth opponents hitting .199. LMU has the most aces in a match this season in the WCC with 12 vs. Quinnipiac on Aug. 27.
LMU's Jasmine Rankins is sixth in kills with 3.20 kpg (227 total). Betsi Metter is second in service aces with 0.41 sapg while teammate Rankins is third with 0.38 sapg. Metter leads the league in digs with 4.83 dpg (343 total). Metter is tied for the league lead with the most digs in a match with 34 vs. UC Santa Barbara on Oct. 7.
After a sluggish 0-3 start San Francisco has proved it belongs in the WCC title discussion. Since Sept. 2nd San Francisco has gone 13-4 including a sweep over then No. 16th ranked San Diego, which remains USD's only loss of the season.
USF fell 3-1 to then-No. 19 Pepperdine last Saturday. In USF's first home loss of the season freshman middle blocker Valentina Zaloznik led with a match-high 14 kills on .323 hitting with three blocks. Freshman opposite hitter Vendula Strakova added 11 kills with seven digs, while Jocelyn Levig added 10 kills and 11 digs. Joan Caloiaro dished 41 assists with 12 digs. Freshman libero Rebecca Kopilovitch recorded a team-high 23 digs.
Youth has been a driving force behind San Francisco's success this season. Zaloznik and Strakova have proven that they two of the most talented newcomers in the WCC, and Kopilovitch has made an instant impact as well. Strakova leads the league in kills during conference play and is third on the team in hitting. Zaloznik leads the team in blocks and is second in kills, hitting and service aces. Kopilovitch has a league-leading and team-best 4.35 dpg. Caloiaro averages better than 10 apg which leads the team and adds 0.25 sapg. Junior OH Levig also has put together a strong season, leading the team in aces while placing second in blocks and kills.
Strakova has stepped her play up in conference matches, climbing from third in kills in overall matches to first with 3.88 kpg when facing a WCC opponent. Caloiaro has also improved during conference play, rising from fourth in assists during overall matches to second in WCC contests. Kopilovitch leads the league in digs with 5.45 dpg.
USF is second in the league hitting .239 and third in opponent hitting percentage at .168. They are also second in service aces, fourth in kills and fifth in assists. In conference play USF has improved to lead the league with 16.31 dpg. They are in the top four in every major category except blocks, where they are sixth.