Bruins Take On USC In Pac-10 Opener

Sept. 20, 2001

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Last week's tragedy in New York City and Washington, DC, forced the cancellation of UCLA's first Pac-10 series of the 2001 season, which was to take place in Oregon. It is not yet known if those matches will be rescheduled.

Therefore, the Bruins will return to the court this Friday, against cross-town rival USC at the Lyon Center in the Pac-10 opener for both teams. The Bruins and Women of Troy split the season series in 2000, with USC winning in four games at North Gym early in the season before UCLA downed the Women of Troy 3-0 in just under two hours on Nov. 3 at Pauley Pavilion. UCLA leads the all-time series against USC by a 50-36 margin.

US Bank/Arby's Classic Recap
Two Bruins recorded career statistical milestones last weekend, as UCLA posted a 2-1 record and runner-up finish at the US Bank/Arby's Classic in Lincoln, NE. On Friday against Notre Dame, Kristee Porter recorded her 1,000th career dig, a milestone also reached the following afternoon by Ashley Bowles in UCLA's 3-0 win over Pepperdine. Against the Waves, UCLA hit .398 for the match, headlined by a 20 kill, .741 attack percentage performance by Porter, the first error-free match of her stellar Bruin career. For the second consecutive weekend, Porter, Bowles and Lauren Fendrick were all named to the All-Tournament Team.

Head Coach Andy Banachowski
Now in his 35th season on the Bruin bench, UCLA head coach Andy Banachowski remains one of the top coaches in his profession. On Sept. 1 in Hawaii, he became the first collegiate women's volleyball coach in history to record 900 career wins, and is just the second collegiate volleyball coach for either gender to reach that milestone. UCLA men's coach Al Scates, for whom Banachowski was a setter during his collegiate career, posted his 1,000th career win last March. The first women's volleyball coach to be inducted into the National Volleyball Hall of Fame in Holyoke, MA, Banachowski currently has a career record of 903-213 (.809), and has coached the Bruins to six national championships, including three NCAA titles.

Superior Seniors
UCLA's senior class of Ashley Bowles, Kristee Porter and Erika Selsor is comprised completely of four-year starters, none of whom have missed a match in their Bruin career. Despite the humble beginnings of an 0-6 start to their freshman campaign in 1998, this trio has gone on to play in two NCAA Regional Finals (1999, losing to eventual NCAA Champion Penn State, and 2000, losing to NCAA Runner-Up Wisconsin), and will rewrite nearly every statistical category in Pac-10 and UCLA history. Selsor has already recorded her 5,000th career set assist, and is closing in on both the UCLA and Pac-10 career assist records. Bowles has already joined an elite group of players that compiled 1,000 kills, 1,000 digs and 100 service aces during their careers, while Porter is on pace to destroy the Pac-10 and UCLA kill record of 2,115, set by Pac-10 Player of the Decade Natalie Williams.

In addition, on Sept. 7, Porter became the first 2,000 kill/1,000 dig performer in Pac-10 history, when she recorded, her 1,000th dig. Liz Masakayan is the only other Bruin to achieve that tandem (2,044 kills/1,142 digs from 1982-85), but she completed her career before the inception of Pac-10 women's sports.

Porter Points
The inaugural Pac-10 Player of the Week for 2001, Kristee Porter recorded her 2,000th career kill on Sept. 2 in UCLA's 3-0 victory over then-No. 5 Hawai'i while averaging 6.22 kills per game for the tournament ...At the US Bank/Arby's Classic, she became the first Pac-10 player and second Bruin to record both 2,000 career kills and 1,000 career digs ...The 2000 ASICS/Volleyball Magazine Player of the Year, Porter already holds the Pac-10 record for 30-kill matches with 17 ...That nearly triples the previous UCLA and Pac-10 record of six, set by UCLA's Natalie Williams (1989-92) ...Williams currently holds a different UCLA and Pac-10 record that Porter is closing in on, with a conference record of 2,115 career kills ...Porter needs just 65 kills to take over the UCLA and Pac-10 career kills record from Williams ...Last season, Porter downed 741 kills, a new UCLA and Pac-10 record en route to earning first-team AVCA All-American honors ...A three-sport athlete at UCLA, Porter also played basketball and triple jumped for the Pac-10 champion Bruin track and field team ...In the cage, Porter was second in the Pac-10 in rebounding with an 8.1 per-game average, and ranked third in the Pac-10 and 28th in the NCAA standings with 1.8 blocked shots per game ...On the track, Porter was third in the triple jump at the Pac-10 Championship, with a mark of 40-11.75 as UCLA won its fifth-straight Pac-10 title.

Porter's Career Stats/Through matches of Sept. 9
2,051 kills (2nd in UCLA and Pac-10 history. Needs 65 kills to pass Natalie Williams for both records), 1,022 digs (10th UCLA history), 48 solo blocks, 193 block assists, 241 total blocks, 79 service aces. For more information on Kristee Porter, please refer to pages 20-21 of the UCLA media guide.

Selsor Sets
Entering her fourth season as the quarterback of the Bruin offense, senior Erika Selsor is closing in on a career milestone of her own, needing 525 more assists to eclipse Ann Boyer's UCLA career record (5667). On Sunday, Sept. 2, Selsor became the second player in Bruin history and the third player in Pac-10 history to reach 5,000 career assists. Selsor, who enters the Oregon series with 5,143 assists, is currently third in Pac-10 history behind Holly McPeak (Cal/UCLA, 5421 assists) and Miya Malauua (OSU, 5368). Boyer's first season at UCLA was prior to Pac-10 play, therefore her conference total for assists is 4840. Selsor has recorded a UCLA record 14 matches with 70 or more assists with three matches in the 80s, including an 89-assist performance in last year's NCAA Second Round match at Pauley Pavilion against Michigan State. That was the third-highest single-match assist total in school history.

Bowles Reaches 1,000 Career Digs
The first four-time selection to the Hawaiian Airlines Classic All-Tournament Team in history, senior opposite hitter Ashley Bowles became the seventh player in UCLA history to record both 1,000 career kills and digs, and the fifth Bruin to add 100 aces to that tandem. Additionally, Bowles has the highest career service aces total among the 2001 Bruins, reaching the 100 career aces milestone in UCLA's season opener on Aug. 31 against Michigan. Last season, she became the 18th Bruin to reach 1,000 career kills, recording the milestone on Sept. 29, 2000, in Pauley Pavilion. She currently has 1,343 kills (13th UCLA history), 1,010 digs and 109 aces for her Bruin career. A "jack of all trades," Bowles is capable of playing on the outside, back row, and can set for the Bruins if need be. This season, Bowles has set for UCLA for portions of each match, when Bruin setter Erika Selsor was subbed out for a defensive replacement.

Sibling Rivalry
Redshirt junior middle blocker Angela Eckmier started her first career matches last weekend at the Hawaiian Airlines Classic in Honolulu. The third match of the weekend, against then-No. 5 Hawai'i, featured a duel at the net between Angela and her younger sister Melody, a freshman starting middle blocker for the Rainbow Wahine. The Bruins swept to a 3-0 win, as Angela recorded six kills (.308 attack percentage), one dig and seven block assists while Melody notched one kill (.167 attack percentage) and five block assists. For the weekend, UCLA's Eckmier led her team in blocks with two solo blocks and 11 block assists for a 1.86 per-game average.

Fresh Faces Find Time on Court
This season, head coach Andy Banachowski utilized several players that were either new to the team or new to UCLA's regular rotation. Both Bruin starting middle blockers, Angela Eckmier (who redshirted the 2000 season due to a knee injury) and freshman Brynn Murphy, are new to the rotation, as are freshman DS Chrissie Zartman and middles Cira Wright and freshman Heather Cullen. Wright played in just 36 of a possible 124 games a year ago, but saw action in more than half of UCLA's games over the weekend. Zartman and Murphy serve as a pair in the rotation, with Zartman playing in the back row with a 3.10 per-game dig average while Murphy plays in the front row and averages 0.67 blocks per game with 15 kills in nine games played. Cullen and Wright both saw extended action in the Michigan match and served as defensive subs for Bruin setter Erika Selsor at other points during the weekend.

Quick Starts
The three true freshmen that saw playing time at the Hawaiian Airlines Classic over Labor Day weekend got their Bruin careers off to a very quick start. On the first rally of their collegiate careers, Chrissie Zartman served an ace to start the match against Michigan, Brynn Murphy recorded a solo block, and Heather Cullen downed a kill. Brittany Ringel opened her Bruin career on Sept. 7 against Notre Dame, recording two kills on three swings with a dig. Currently, Zartman is eighth in the Pac-10 with a 0.47 aces per game average, while Murphy is averaging 0.76 blocks/game. Cullen has played in five games, while Ringel has seen action in six games over three matches.

Zartman Participates in U-21 Beach World Championships
Freshman defensive specialist Chrissie Zartman missed most of the last week of UCLA's preseason training, as she was in LeLavondou, France, for the Under-21 FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships. Zartman and her partner Kristin Ursillo (a sophomore setter at Northeastern) finished tied for ninth after advancing from pool play into the elimination round, where they lost their first match.

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