Dec. 5, 2009
LOS ANGELES - Four Bruins had double-doubles, led by sophomore Amanda Gil's 15 kills and 11 blocks, but eighth-seeded UCLA was upset by Baylor in four sets on Saturday in the second round of the NCAA Tournament at Pauley Pavilion. Scores were 23-25, 22-25, 31-29, 19-25.
The Bruins conclude their season at 24-9, while the Bears, who advance to the Gainesville Regional, improve to 24-9.
Senior Kaitlin Sather posted 13 kills and 15 digs to go along with six blocks, freshman Lauren Cook added 45 assists and 11 digs and freshman Bojana Todorovic recorded 11 kills and 14 digs. Junior Dicey McGraw was also in double figures in kills with 13. Sophomore Lainey Gera notched a career-high 30 digs. The Bruins hit .183 as a team with 13 blocks, but also had a season-high 11 service errors.
In an opening set that featured 11 ties and six lead changes, Baylor staved off a late UCLA rally to win the first. The Bears had the first run, scoring four of the initial five points of the match, but the Bruins came back with the next five to take a 6-4 lead. McGraw, Sather and Gil had successive kills to start the 5-0 run, which was followed by a Baylor ball handling error and another spike by Gil. The Bears bounced back with four in a row to go up 8-6.
The lead switched hands four more times before Baylor, down 15-14, went on a 6-2 run to take a 20-17 advantage. The Bears saw their lead get up to as many as five twice, getting their first set point at 24-19. UCLA dodged the first four set points on kills by sophomore Katie Camp and Gil and back-to-back combo blocks by Gil and McGraw and Gil and freshman Rachael Kidder to make it 24-23. But a Bruin service error ended the run and gave the Bears a 25-23 win. Gil had more than half of the kills for the Bruins in the first with seven. Baylor out-hit UCLA .273 to .200.
UCLA jumped out to an early 5-1 lead thanks to a kill by Gil, a combo block by Gil and Sather and three Baylor attack errors. But the Bears responded with the next seven to take an 8-5 advantage. Although the Bruins would tie the set five more times, the Bears never trailed for the rest of the second. Down 11-7, the Bruins recorded six of the next eight to even the score at 13. McGraw had two kills during the run, Sather and Todorovic had one each and the Bears committed two errors.
Baylor was ahead 18-15, but a 3-0 mini-run on kills by Sather and Todorovic and a Bear attack error squared things at 18. The teams exchanged the next six points, but the Bears scored four of the last five to take the second 25-22. Sather had six kills in the second, while McGraw added three. Despite dropping the set, the Bruins out-hit the Bears .267 to .240.
The third set saw 19 ties, 11 lead changes, three Baylor match points and five UCLA set points before the Bruins posted a thrilling 31-29 victory. Neither team led by more than three. With the score tied at 16, the Bruins scored the next three on a McGraw kill, a Sather/Gil combo block and a Baylor error to go up 19-16. UCLA still led by three at 21-18, but Baylor came back with six of the next seven to earn its first match point at 24-22.
The Bruins squelched Baylor's first two match points on a ball handling error and a combo block by Gil and Kidder to even things at 24, while another dual roof by Gil and Kidder gave UCLA its first set point at 25-24. The Bears recorded the next two to go up 26-25 and earn their third match point, but back-to-back kills by Gil and McGraw put the Bruins back on top 27-26. The teams exchanged the next five points to tie the set at 29, but the Bruins closed out the set with kills by Sather and Todorovic to win it 31-29. McGraw paced UCLA with seven kills, while Gil had three kills and eight blocks. The Bruins were out-hit .131 to .111, but had nine blocks.
It was another back-and-forth affair in the fourth, but the Bears pulled away late to win the match in four. The Bruins took an early 6-4 lead, recording the points on two Sather kills, one each by Gil, McGraw and Todorovic and a Baylor ball handling error. The Bears came back with an 8-3 run to go ahead by three at 12-9 and didn't trail for the rest of the set.
UCLA closed to within one three times at 13-12, 14-13 and 16-15, but a 3-0 run by Baylor put the visitors up 19-15. The Bruins were unable to get closer than two the rest of the way, as the Bears scored six of the last eight points to take the set 25-19. Todorovic led UCLA with five kills, while Gil and Sather had three apiece. The Bruins were out-hit .438 to .186 and had no blocks after posting nine in the third set.
Katie Sanders paced Baylor with 13 kills and was joined in double figures by Elizabeth Graham (12), Anna Breyfogle (11) and Torri Campbell (10). Sanders (12 digs) and Taylor Barnes (50 assists and 20 digs) each had double-doubles. The Bears hit .244 as a team with 10 blocks.