DAVIS, Calif. — Santa Clara volleyball continued its recent stretch of strong performances with its third sweep victory in four matches on Saturday afternoon. The Broncos defeated UC Davis 25-17, 25-17, 25-22 in the final match of the UC Davis Invitational at The Pavilion.
SCU finished in second place in the four-team event, which Boise State won on a head-to-head tiebreaker over Santa Clara. Hailey Lindberg and Michelle Gajdka were named to the all-tournament team for their performances over three matches. Lindberg hit .378 with 21 kills and 10 blocks while Gajdka had a team-high 29 kills and 26 digs.
Three Broncos finished Saturday's action with double-digit kills: Gajdka (match-high 13), Lindberg (11) and Jensen Cunningham (10). Gajdka also had 14 digs for a double-double and Kirsten Mead logged one of her own with 33 assists and a season-high 15 digs. The Broncos (5-4) matched a season-best mark with 12.0 team blocks and Taylor Odom turned in her top defensive performance of the year with 8.0 blocks.
Mahalia White led the Aggies (5-5) with eight kills. Malia Bolko had a match-high 23 digs for the tournament hosts.
Santa Clara opened the match with a wire-to-wire first set win. Gajdka had six kills in the first stanza, which the Broncos controlled with an early 5-2 edge and finished by winning five points in a row. Odom registered a block on three straight points during the latter run before Gajdka clinched the set with a kill.
The Broncos trailed for all of one point in the match, when the Aggies took a 1-0 lead in the second set. Santa Clara quickly responded with a 5-0 run that included a block and a kill from Lindberg. Once more, the Broncos closed the set on a strong spree by winning nine of the last 11 points.
The two sides were tied up six times through 10-10 in a close start to the third set. The Broncos won the next three points and remained ahead the rest of the way. Cunningham had five kills in the set, including a clutch late effort to put Santa Clara on match point at 24-22 after UC Davis won three points in a row.
Santa Clara plays its first home matches of the season next week as part of the Santa Clara/San José State Invitational next week. The Broncos host Idaho Friday at 11 a.m., followed by No. 7 Kansas at 7 p.m. They play a road match at San José State Saturday at 7 p.m.
• The Broncos last recorded sweeps in three of four matches from Nov. 12-19, 2015, when they swept San Francisco, LMU and Pepperdine in three consecutive home contests.
• Lindberg earned her third career all-tournament team selection, while Gajdka earned her first such honor. Lindberg was named to the all-tournament team at the Active Ankle Challenge and Cal Classic in 2016.
• Santa Clara is 4-1 all-time against UC Davis.
• Taylor Laugero, who led the team with 471 digs last season, has not played through nine matches this year due to injury.
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