Nov. 10, 2006
LOS ANGELES - Nana Meriwether had 18 kills and five blocks and Katie Carter notched 16 kills and six blocks as fifth-ranked UCLA knocked off 12th-ranked California on Friday night in Berkeley, 23-30, 30-23, 32-30, 30-28.
With the win, UCLA improves to 25-2, 12-2 Pac-10, while Cal falls to 17-7, 6-7 Pac-10. UCLA's win, combined with Stanford's loss on Friday night to USC, moves the Bruins ahead of Stanford for first place in the Pac-10 standings. Stanford (11-2 Pac-10) now stands one-half game behind the Bruins while Washington also claims a spot at the top of the conference with the same 12-2 league mark as UCLA.
UCLA led early in game one at 7-3 after an ace by Laura Kroneberger, but Cal rallied to tie the game at 10-10. It was tied again at 16-16 and Cal led by just one point at 18-17 before the host Bears scored eight of the next nine points to take command of game one. UCLA ended up hitting -.026 in game one as Cal took the 30-23 decision.
Cal continued to control the match as the Bears led 12-7 midway through game two and still led 19-17 before the Bruins picked up steam as Meriwether notched two-straight kills to tie the game at 19-19. Cal led 22-21, but this time it was UCLA's turn to post a late-game rally as the Bruins used kills by Carter, Meriwether and Ali Daley, sandwiched around two Cal errors, to take a 26-22 edge. A kill by Daley ended game two at 30-23 and sent the teams into halftime tied at a game apiece.
Game three saw the teams enjoy 10 ties in the early going as the teams were still knotted at 18-18. Cal opened up a five-point edge at 24-19 and had four game points with a 29-25 lead and the serve. However, UCLA did not panic as the Bruins got a kill by Meriwether, a block by Carter, a Cal error and a Nellie Spicer ace to tie the game at 29-29. UCLA enjoyed game point at 30-29 with a Colby Lyman kill, but Cal managed to get the sideout. UCLA maintained its momentum as Meriwether and Daley came up with kills as the Bruins scored seven of the game's final eight points for a dramatic 32-30 win in game three.
Once again in game four, Cal jumped out to an early lead, this time at 14-10 before UCLA got kills from Lyman, Meghan Schoen, Daley and a Cal error to tie it at 14-14. The game was tied at 26-26 when a Spicer kill and block assists by Carter and Rachell Johnson gave the Bruins a 28-26 lead. The teams traded sideouts to give UCLA match point at 29-28. The Bruins took full advantage as Carter ended the night with a kill as UCLA took game four, 30-28, to win the match three games to one.
Meriwether led UCLA with her 18 kills, team-high 21.0 points and hit .350 while Carter's six blocks represented a team high to go along with her 16 kills, 19.5 points and .250 percentage. Daley posted 12 kills and 13.0 points while Lyman posted a solid overall match with eight kills, seven digs, four blocks, two aces and hit .300 for 12.5 points. Spicer dished 56 assists, grabbed 10 digs and hit .364 with four kills and no errors on 11 swings. Jordan Smith led UCLA with 15 digs while Jade Machado added 13 digs. Cal was led by Angie Pressey (20 kills) and Ellen Orchard (14 kills, nine blocks).
As a team, UCLA improved every game of the match, going from that -.026 in game one to .260 in game two, .280 in game three and an impressive .340 in game four. UCLA also increased its kill number every game (9-17-19-21) while eliminating errors. After committing 10 errors in game one, UCLA hit just 12 errors the rest of the match combined.
UCLA wraps up the weekend on Saturday as the Bruins face second-ranked Stanford at Maples Pavilion with the winner of the match between the Bruins and Cardinal able to claim either a share or sole possession of first place in the Pac-10.
WEEKEND TELEVISION NOTES: UCLA's win over Cal is being televised on a tape-delayed basis on Sat., Nov. 12. In Southern California, the match is scheduled to air on FSN Prime Ticket at noon and on FSN West at 1:30 p.m.
The Bruins match vs. Stanford also will air tape-delayed, slated to be shown on CSTV at 12:30 p.m. PT on Sun., Nov. 12, and 7 pm PT on Mon., Nov. 13.