Ninth-Ranked Bruins Host #6 USC on Friday

Nov. 23, 2010

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Friday, Nov. 26
5 p.m. - #6 USC (24-4, 13-4 Pac-10) at #9 UCLA (21-7, 11-6 Pac-10)
Online Coverage: Live Video | Live Audio | Gametracker

After the Black Friday shopping and the Thanksgiving leftovers, head out to Pauley Pavilion in your best blue and gold to watch a pair of Top 10 teams square off in the last match of the regular season, as the ninth-ranked Bruins host #6 USC at 5 p.m. If you can't make it out, Gametracker and free audio and video will be available at

The NCAA selection show, which will announce the 64-team field, will be aired on Sunday at 12 p.m. on ESPNEWS. The first and second round of the NCAA Tournament will begin at 16 campus sites on Friday, Dec. 3 and continue on Saturday, Dec. 4.

For the first time this season, the Bruins are ranked in single digits in the AVCA Top 25 Coaches poll, coming in at ninth with a season-best 996 points. The Bruins had been ranked between 10th and 14th during each week of the regular season. UCLA remained at ninth for the second straight week in the latest Volleyball Magazine Top 20 poll, receiving eight more points. The Bruins were selected seventh in the Pac-10 preseason coaches poll, earning 38 points.

All remaining contests, including the first two weekends of the NCAA Tournament, will feature free audio broadcasts at In addition, Gametracker will also be available for all Bruin matches.

Junior Katie Camp suffered a season-ending, left-knee injury during the second set against Oregon on Friday. She currently leads the Bruins with 1.14 blocks per set and a .333 hitting percentage and is third with 1.98 kills per set ... junior Lainey Gera was named Pac-10 Player of the Week last Monday after tying a school record for digs in a three-set match against Arizona State with 28 and following that up with a 27-dig effort versus Arizona. The POW award is the first of Gera's career, the first this season for the Bruins and the 55th all-time for UCLA ... the Bruins are 18-0 when winning the opening set ... UCLA is a perfect 19-0 when out-hitting its opponent and 14-0 when hitting .250 or better ... the Bruins are 16-0 when holding their foe under a .200 hitting percentage ... UCLA is 9-0 this season when winning the fourth set of a match, but 0-6 when dropping the fourth ... the Nov. 6 loss at Cal was the only time this season the Bruins have lost in five sets (3-1) and the first time they lost when up 2-1 in a match ... the Oct. 29 win over Washington snapped an eight-match losing streak to the Huskies and was just the second time this year the Bruins have won when getting out-hit (.329-.268). The .329 percentage marked the first time since Sept. 4, 1994 (at Hawai'i) that UCLA has won a match when its opponent hit over .300 ... the 105 digs at Arizona on Oct. 15 marked the first time the Bruins have had triple figures in digs since Nov. 20, 2007 against Pepperdine and the most since producing 109 against Washington on Dec. 11, 2004 ... Gera remains at first among Pac-10 players in digs per set at 5.07 and entered the national rankings this week at 39th ... Camp and junior Lauren Van Orden are in the Pac-10 Top 10 in two categories. Camp is fourth in blocks per set (1.14) and ninth in hitting percentage (.333), while Van Orden is fifth in assists per set (11.53) and eighth in aces per set (0.24). Senior Dicey McGraw is eighth with 3.87 kills per set ... as a team, the Bruins, who have led the Pac-10 in dps in each of the last three seasons, are once again atop the standings with 15.73 dps ... nationally, the Bruins rank 17th in assists per set (13.37) and 22nd in kps (14.20). Van Orden is 16th in aps ... Van Orden posted her team-best seventh double-double on Friday at Oregon and has 14 contests with at least 40 assists ... freshman Kelly Reeves notched her 10th double-figure digs match of the year against Arizona on Nov. 13 with 13, which was two shy of her career best ... junior Sara Sage, who will fill in for the injured Camp, came off the bench to post seven kills and only one error in 11 attempts (.545) in just two sets against Arizona on Nov. 13 ... Gera surpassed Nellie Spicer (1,299) on UCLA's all-time digs list and is third with 1,340. She has 112 digs over her last four matches (8.00 dps) ... McGraw has double figures in kills in 19 of her last 20 matches, including three 20+ kills contests. She had a career-best 24 at Cal (Nov. 6) and Oregon (Nov. 19) and posted 23 against Arizona (Nov. 13) ... sophomore Bojana Todorovic notched her fourth double-double of the season, third in as many weekends and eighth of her career with a personal-best 15 kills to go with 12 digs, two aces and a .452 percentage (15-1-31) at Oregon on Friday ... sophomore Rachael Kidder has 14 straight matches with double figures in kills after producing 11 at Oregon on Friday and 14 at Oregon State on Sunday. She also has 4+ blocks in five of her last six contests ... freshman Mariana Aquino is hitting .408 over her last eight matches with 48 kills and eight errors in 98 attempts ... freshman Meg Norton started her first career match at Oregon on Friday night and posted a season-best three aces to go with 10 digs for her second double-figure digs match.

Like the Bruins, USC has won four in a row after sweeping the Arizona and Oregon schools over the last two weekends. The Trojans were taken to five sets at Oregon and beat ASU in four, while sweeping Arizona and Oregon State. USC is hitting .295 as a team this season with 14.32 kills, 1.34 aces, 13.91 digs and 2.32 blocks per set. Junior Alex Jupiter leads the way with 4.41 kps and 35 aces to go along with 2.47 dps. Freshman Falyn Fonoimoana (3.21) and junior Lauren Williams (2.38) are also averaging over 2.00 kps. Williams is tops on the team with a .435 hitting percentage and 0.92 bps. Junior Kendall Bateman handles the setting duties and is averaging 12.31 assists per set, while freshman Natalie Hagglund is the best in the back row with 3.89 dps. In conference action, the Trojans are hitting .287 with 14.24 kills, 1.03 aces, 13.51 digs and 2.27 blocks per set. Jupiter has raised her average to 4.54 kps to go with 19 aces and 2.46 dps. She is followed by Fonoimoana's 3.33 kps and Williams' 2.21 kps. Williams (0.90 bps), Bateman (12.35 aps) and Hagglund (4.05 dps) lead the team in their respective categories. Mick Haley is in his 10th year at USC and holds a record of 250-58.

Despite the Trojans' win against the Bruins in September, UCLA still holds a 56-50 advantage in the all-time series. UCLA had won three straight in the series before its loss at the Galen Center. Last Oct. 9 at Pauley Pavilion, the Bruins posted a sweep of their cross-town rival, 27-25, 25-20, 25-22. Dicey McGraw had 12 kills and Lainey Gera notched 23 digs. UCLA is 27-18 at home against USC and has won four straight at Pauley. The Trojans' last victory in Westwood was a four-set win on Sept. 30, 2005.

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