Bruins Back For Homestand

Oct. 28, 2003

The Bruins will remain in Southern California this week, playing a Tuesday night match at Cal State Northridge prior to the start of a two-match homestand against Washington State and Washington at Pauley Pavilion on Friday and Saturday nights. UCLA pulled out dramatic five-game victories over both Washington schools earlier this season in its first Pac-10 road series of the 2003 season. Brynn Murphy had career-high nights in both of those matches.


UCLA has pulled into a tie for third place in the Pac-10 standings after a weekend sweep of the Oregon schools. The Bruins started in Eugene, OR, with a four-game win over Oregon on Thursday night, a 30-23, 30-20, 29-31, 30-22 win. Four players had double-figure kills, led by Cira Wright who had career-high numbers of 15 kills and 19 digs and was joined in double-figure kills by teammates Brittany Ringel (17), Becky Green (13) and Brynn Murphy (11). On Friday night at Oregon State, the Beavers were out-blocked 14-6 and hit .022 as a team for the evening. Heather Cullen led the Bruins with 12 kills, while Murphy had a match-high 15 points in the three-game win.


The Bruins hold a 28-5 advantage in the all-time series against the Matadors, but the two teams have not met since the 1997 season. Cal State Northridge is coached by Jeff Stork, who is in his second season as head coach of the Matadors. Stat Leaders: Kills- Jennifer Fopma (5.16/game); Attack %- Nadine Nickel (.368); Assists- Nickel (12.23); Aces- Nickel (0.41/game); Digs- Nickel (3.06); Blocks- Fopma (1.42).


UCLA holds a 28-7 all-time record against the Cougars, who are coached by Cindy Fredrick. Fredrick is in her 15th season as the head coach at WSU with a record of 276-189 (.594) with the Cougars. Last Time (Oct. 2, 2003): Brynn Murphy posted a then-career high 21 kills as UCLA lost the first two games of the match then rallied for a dramatic 23-30, 27-30, 30-25, 30-27, 15-10 victory in Bohler Gym earlier this season. The match was televised by FOX Sports Net.

UCLA VS. WASHINGTON (15-5, 6-5 PAC-10)

UCLA leads Washington by a 37-6 margin in the all-time series. The Huskies are coached by Jim McLaughlin who is in his third year as head coach at UW with a record of 46-32. He is in his 14th season as a collegiate head coach with a record of 270-150. Last Time (Oct. 3, 2003): Brynn Murphy had a career-high 22 kills as the Bruins defeated Washington 30-27, 30-26, 26-30, 21- 30, 24-22 in a dramatic five-game match in Seattle. The Bruins trailed game five by five points as late as 9-4 before storming back to tie the game. A long back-and-forth battle ensued with UW serving for the match five times before UCLA converted its fourth match point for the win.

HEAD COACH Andy Banachowski

In his 37th season on the Bruin bench, UCLA head coach Andy Banachowski remains one of the top coaches in his profession. On Sept. 1, 2001, 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 in February, 2000. 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 955-239 (.800), and has coached the Bruins to six national championships, including three NCAA titles.


Junior Brynn Murphy is leading the Bruins with 278 kills and 3.81 kills per game, and is second on the team (among non-setters) with a .322 attack percentage and 1.03 blocks per game. Murphy was named the Pac-10 Player of the week on Oct. 6 after posting career-high matches against Washington and Washington State. For the week, she hit .268 with 43 kills (4.30 kpg) on 112 attack attempts with just 13 errors. She also had 16 digs, seven blocks and two service aces as the Bruins won two five-game matches in Washington. Murphy has played primarily in the front row, as she is generally replaced by a libero while in the back row. She was named to the All- Tournament Team at all three of UCLA's pre-conference tournaments, the Hawaiian Airlines Classic and the Ruby's Montana Invitational. At the HAL Classic, she led the Bruins with 41 kills (3.73/game) while hitting .307 and recording 10 blocks for an 0.91 per-game average. In Montana, Murphy's numbers were again impressive, as she averaged team-highs of 4.00 kills per game, a .509 attack percentage and eight blocks for a 1.00 per-game average. Murphy was named the Student-Athlete of the Week after her MVP performance at the Time Warner Cable Texas Invitational, where she had 4.22 kills per game and a .479 attack percentage in UCLA's three victories.


Heather Cullen earned MVP honors at the Ruby's Montana Invitational Sept. 5-6, downing 32 kills in nine games with a .397 attack percentage and 12 digs. Cullen led all players with a career-high 17 kills against Idaho in UCLA's tournament opener, hitting .600 (17 K-2 E-25 TA). On the season, Cullen is second on the team with 196 kills for a 3.06 per-game average, has 11 service aces and 46 blocks for a 0.72 per-game average. Cullen also stepped out in a big way against the Washington schools in UCLA's pair of dramatic five-game victories, hitting a team-high .306 for the weekend with 34 kills, 22 digs and 10 blocks. In UCLA's five-game win over Washington on Oct. 3, Cullen turned in four career-high numbers with 18 kills, 15 digs, seven blocks (1BS/6BA) and 22 points.


Redshirt junior Krystal McFarland is one of UCLA's tri-captains for the 2003 season (with classmates Heather Cullen and Chrissie Zartman), and has been UCLA's primary setter this season. McFarland leads the Bruins in assists, averaging 10.41 per game, and has also averaged 2.22 digs and 0.56 blocks per game. McFarland set the Bruins through the Hawaiian Airlines Classic, but stepped aside through parts of the Montana and Texas Invitationals as sophomore Haley Jorgensborg took over setting duties. McFarland was one of several Bruins to post impressive numbers at Washington State and Washington in early October, turning in then-season-high numbers of 56 assists, five kills (ties careerhigh) and 20 digs (one shy of career-high) against UW on Oct. 3. She posted a career-high 65 assists in UCLA's five-game loss to Stanford on Oct. 16. She ranks fourth in the Pac-10 in assists/game.


The only senior remaining on the 2003 Bruins active roster, Cira Wright earned All-Tournament honors at the season-opening Hawaiian Airlines Classic. Wright leads the team averaging 1.27 blocks per game, and is third in the Pac-10's statistical rankings for blocks. Playing all the way around for the first time in her career, Wright has already posted a career-high digging match three this season, recording eight digs in UCLA's five-game loss to then-No. 2 Hawai'i on Sept. 1 and topping that mark with a 10-dig performance at Washington on Oct. 3 before recording a new career-high of 11 digs at Cal on Oct. 17. She set a new career-high with three aces against Oregon on Sept. 26 in a 20-point performance, and has posted her season-high of 14 kills on three occasions, including both matches against the Washington schools. On Oct. 11 against Arizona State, Wright matched her career-high for aces with three consecutive aces in the early stages of game three. She has had three three-ace matches this season.


A heavy hitter, Brittany Ringel continues to pound down kills with a 2.55 per-game average, including a season-high 17 kills and 19 points at Oregon on Oct. 23. Replaced by a libero in the back row, Ringel has served nine aces this season. She had three aces on Sept. 6 at Montana, setting a new career-high mark. She is averaging just under one dig per game, and has scored 149.0 points. She had 10 kills, including five in game five, of UCLA's five-game win over Washington on Oct. 3. Ringel sat out the previous weekend's matches with an ankle sprain, an injury that has slowed her production for much of the season.


UCLA's home opener against USC featured freshman Rachell Johnson singing the "Star Spangled Banner" prior to the start of the match. Johnson has yet to see game action for the Bruins due to a broken bone in her right hand (see Injury Update). When the scheduled anthem singer for UCLA's Oct. 11 match at Pauley Pavilion faltered twice early in the song, Johnson stepped out to the edge of the court and helped her through the remainder of the anthem.

Brynne Murphy and UCLA are ranked third in the Pac-10.


Named the "Top Libero" at the Ruby's Montana Invitational despite playing the position for just seven of UCLA's nine tournament games, junior Chrissie Zartman continues to shine as the Bruin libero, leading the Bruins with 4.04 digs per game. On Oct. 3 at Washington, Zartman became the 14th player in UCLA women's volleyball history to record her 1,000th career dig, a mark she recorded with her final dig of game four in UCLA's five-game win over the Huskies.

She enters the Bay Area series with 1,104 career digs, good for 11th on UCLA's all-time list. She needs seven more digs to pass Ann Boyer (1,110) for 10th on UCLA's all-time list. Zartman opened the season with a 4.45 digs/game average at the Hawaiian Airlines Classic, and went on to average 4.33 digs/ game as she earned All-Tournament honors at the Time Warner Cable Texas Invitational, UCLA's final tournament of the regular season. Zartman is the only Bruin to have played in all of UCLA's 74 games thus far. In UCLA's Pac-10 opener against No. 1 USC, Zartman led the Bruins with 19 digs and she holds a 4.13 per-game average in conference play, tops in the Pac-10. She posted a season-high 25 digs in UCLA's four-game win at Oregon.

An accomplished beach volleyball player, Zartman has earned her AAA beach rating, and won a gold medal at the World University Games in 2002 while playing with long-time partner Tracy Lindquist. She also finished second at the FIVB Under-21 World Championships with playing partner Keao Burdine.

FRESHMAN FIREPOWER Four of UCLA's five freshmen have seen game action this season. Colby Lyman had an impressive collegiate debut match against Louisville, posting 14 kills, 14 digs, four blocks and 16 total points with a .478 attack percentage. She started all three matches in Honolulu. She did not participate at the Time Warner Cable Texas Invitational due to injury, but was cleared to return to the lineup in time for conference play. She started against USC on Sept. 19, assisting on two of UCLA's 16 blocks in the match. Against OSU, Lyman had a 12-kill, 16-dig, six-block, two-ace performance for a career-high 18.5 points. She has played in 34 of a possible 45 Pac-10 games.

Becky Green came off the bench in UCLA's five-game loss to Hawai'i on Sept. 1, turning in an impressive performance, particularly during the last two games of the match. Green then set career highs in nearly every category in the Sept. 5 match against Idaho at the Ruby's Montana Invitational, turning in nine kills, four digs, three block assists and 11.5 points with a .467 attack percentage. She has continued to improve, and career-high marks of 13 kills, 10 digs and four blocks against the Oregon schools in late October. She had a carer-high four aces on Oct. 17 at Cal and continues to lead the Bruins with 23 aces on the season for an 0.38 per-game average.

Katie Carter saw limited action at the Hawaiian Airlines Classic, then earned her first career start against Boise State on Sept. 6 at the Ruby's Montana Invitational. Carter posted several career highs in that match against the Broncos, recording 11 kills, two service aces, four digs and 13 points in the match. She is averaging 1.90 kills per game this season. In Texas, Carter was second on the team with a 3.33 kills per-game average, while contributing 2.00 digs/game and two block assists for 22 points on the weekend.

Laura Kroneberger played libero in game three against Boise State on Sept. 5, recording her first career dig in the match. Kroneberger was unable to play at the Hawaiian Airlines Classic due to a pulled abdominal muscle, but is once again capable of playing. She played in six games in Texas, recording nine digs and an assist. Against Oregon State on Sept. 25, she had a career-high eight digs. She has played in 33 Pac-10 games, primarily as a back-row substitute to serve and play defense.

INJURY UPDATE * Freshman Colby Lyman did not play in Oregon due to conjunctivitis (pink eye). She may be able to return to the lineup this week. * Senior Natalie Ray was sidelined on Oct. 6 when blood clots were discovered in her right shoulder. Ray has had the blood clots removed, and had surgery to remove the top rib on her right side. She is currently at home recovering from surgery. She is not expected to return to the lineup. * Freshman Rachell Johnson is out of the lineup with a broken finger in her right hand. The injury occurred in practice on Aug. 24, and she has been cleared to practice.

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