SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Fresh off one of its biggest West Coast Conference victories of the season, a 3-1 win over Gonzaga, Santa Clara volleyball continues its homestand Friday against San Francisco. The Broncos and Dons are set for a 7:05 p.m. first serve from the Leavey Center.
Santa Clara fell in four sets against Portland on Thursday before downing Gonzaga in four sets on Saturday. The Broncos gave away late leads against the Pilots in two sets; they held a 23-18 edge in the second frame and a 23-20 lead in the fourth set before dropping both stanzas. Against the Bulldogs, Kirsten Mead had a season-high 51 assists and set the Broncos to a .307 hitting percentage, their fourth-highest mark in 24 matches this season.
Mead, a 2015 AVCA All-Pacific North Region and First Team All-WCC selection, suffered an ankle injury in practice prior to the Cal Classic Sept. 9-10. She missed 14 contests in the middle of the season.
Nikki Hess had 19 kills in each of the Broncos' two matches last week. She was one of three Broncos to tally 20 digs against the Pilots alongside Taylor Laugero and Sabrina Clayton. Hess has topped the 1,000 mark in career kills and digs for the Broncos.
Clayton has led the WCC in aces/set for each of the last two seasons, and is in the mix at the top of the WCC again in 2016. She ranks second in the conference with 0.34 aces/set, just 0.01/set behind San Francisco's Tyna Adamcikova. Clayton has an ace in eight consecutive matches and multiple aces in nine matches on the year.
Laugero ranks second in the WCC with 4.49 digs/set, just 0.02/set behind Pacific's Katrin Gotterba. She has posted double-digit digs in 21 of 24 matches during her freshman campaign and hit the 20-dig mark eight times. She ranked fifth in the NCAA in digs/set after the first weekend of the season and third after the second weekend. Her 32 digs Sept. 3 against Auburn tied for fourth-most in single-match program history during the rally scoring era.
SCU SEASON NOTES
- Santa Clara began the year with its best start in program history at 9-0, which marks just the fourth time in the 54-year program history that the Broncos started 6-0 or better. The team's previous best start was 7-0 in 2005, when it reached the NCAA Tournament's Final Four. The Broncos clinched their best start to a season with a four-set win over West Virginia on Saturday, Sept. 10 at the Cal Classic.
- Santa Clara's nine straight regular season match wins in 2016 (10 straight dating back to the 2015 regular season finale against Pacific) marked the longest streak since the team won 15 matches in a row in 2005.
- Santa Clara defeated No. 7 USC 3-1 on Aug. 27. The Trojans are the highest-ranked team the Broncos have defeated in SCU regular season history. Santa Clara defeated No. 5 Arizona and No. 5 Stanford in back-to-back weeks during the 2005 NCAA Tournament.
- Kirsten Mead took home her second career West Coast Conference Player of the Week award Aug. 29.
- Santa Clara played its first 14 contests away from the Leavey Center, which matches the longest stretch to start a season in program history. The Broncos had six true road matches and eight neutral site contests leading up to their home opener against Pacific, and posted a 9-5 record in that stretch. They had 14 straight contests away from home to start the 2012 campaign, and went 10-4 to open the season.
- The Broncos earned three Tournament MVP awards and 10 All-Tournament team selections in the first four weeks of the season:
SAN FRANCISCO (Click here for team site)
The Dons enter Friday's match at 4-21 overall and 0-12 in WCC play. San Francisco has lost 16 straight matches, including 14 sweeps. The Dons did not win a set through the first 11 matches of conference play. In the team's last outing, it took the first two sets off of Portland before dropping three straight frames.
Adamcikova is also the centerpiece of San Francisco's offense. She has 299 kills on the season and averages 3.52/set this year. She ranks second on the team with 160 digs and fourth with 31 total blocks.
Postmatch Autographs (Poster Giveaway Part 3): Approximately 10 minutes after the match, join the volleyball team by the main entrance above section 114 to receive part 3 of our 4-part 2016 Santa Clara Volleyball schedule poster and player autographs.
TICKETS AND PARKING
Tickets: Season or single-game tickets are available. Click here to purchase online or contact the ticket office weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. at (408) 554-4660 or [email protected]. Group discounts are also available through our ticket office sales and service consultants. Doors to the Leavey Center, as well as its ticket office, are open one hour prior to the start of the match.
Parking: For weekday matches, the Leavey Center lot, located on Accolti Way off El Camino Real, is free beginning one hour prior to first serve. Any other parking facility on campus will be subject to normal daily rates or restrictions, including the main structure, located adjacent to Stevens Stadium on Palm Drive. During the weekend, campus parking facilities are free (except for permit required locations). Click here for a campus map and parking restrictions.