Oct. 5, 2000
Following a brief homestand, UCLA is back on the road starting Friday with a Pac-10 match at USC. The Bruins won last season at North Gym in their regular season finale to clinch a tie for the Pac-10 Championship.
The Women of Troy have not yet lost a game during the 2000 season, and stand at 11-0 (6-0 Pac-10). The Bruins do hold the advantage in the all-time series between the two teams with a 49-35 record against USC. UCLA also holds a 17-10 record against the Women of Troy when playing on USC's campus.
Bruins Split Homestand Against Oregon Schools
Despite a disappointing five-game loss to Oregon State on Thursday night in Pauley Pavilion, the Bruins did have some notable performances in that match. Senior middle blocker Elisabeth Bachman recorded her first career double-double, with 12 kills to go along with 11 blocks (2 BS/9 BA). Additionally, junior OH Kristee Porter posted her third 30-kill match of the season, improving her total to 11 career 30-kill matches.
Friday evening saw a milestone of a different sort, as junior Ashley Bowles became the 18th player in UCLA history to record 1,000 career kills. Bowles nearly recorded that milestone on Thursday night, but instead entered Friday's match against Oregon with 999 kills. She recorded the milestone in the first game of UCLA's sweep of the Ducks.
Head Coach Andy Banachowski
In his 34th season on the Bruin bench, UCLA head coach Andy Banachowski remains one of the top coaches in his profession. On Oct. 24, 1997, he was the first women's volleyball coach to be inducted into the National Volleyball Hall of Fame in Holyoke, MA, and was the first women's coach in history to record 800 career wins (883-208, .809). Additionally, Banachowski was honored with USA Volleyball's ?All-Time Great Coach? award last May in Columbus, OH. Under Banachowski's leadership, the Bruins have won six national championships, including three NCAA titles.
National Player of the Year candidate Kristee Porter opened the 2000 season by becoming the first player this year to record 30 kills in a match, and has now accomplished the feat three times, against Penn State (Aug. 25), vs. Texas A&M (Sept. 3) and vs. Oregon State (Sept. 28) ??The Texas A&M match was Porter's 10th career 30-kill match, a 33-kill performance that set a new UCLA record for kills in a four-game match ??Porter leads the Pac-10 with 306 kills, good for a 5.77 per-game average ? She also ranks fifth in the current NCAA standings with that average ? Her 1,500th career kill was downed on Friday night against Oregon (1,504) ??With 11 career 30-kill matches, Porter easily outdistances Natalie Williams and Liz Masakayan (seven each) for the Pac-10 and UCLA career lead in that category ??Porter was named All-Tournament three straight weekends during the Bruins pre-conference schedule, including MVP honors at the Hawaiian Airlines Classic over the Labor Day weekend ? She also earned Pac-10 Player of the Week honors after that tournament on Sept. 5, following the Hawaiian Airlines Classic ? Porter now has three total Pac-10 Player of the Week honors, one during each year of her Bruin career.
Porter's Career Numbers
Last year, Kristee Porter became the second-fastest person in NCAA history and 16th Bruin to record 1,000 career kills, doing so in her 50th career match. Her 1,504 kills is ninth-best in Bruin history and is tops among the Pac-10's active players. For more information on Kristee Porter, please refer to pages 20-21 of the UCLA media guide.
Westwood's "Wiz": Elisabeth Bachman
Senior middle blocker Elisabeth "Wiz" Bachman currently leads the Pac-10 in blocks iwth a 1.45 per-game average, which also ranks 18th in the latest NCAA standings. She posted two career milestones on Sept. 22 in Berkeley, earning her 1,000th career kill on the third rally of UCLA's 3-1 win over Cal, and stuffed her 500th career block on the next-to-last rally of the same match. Bachman is the fourth player in UCLA history and 14th in Pac-10 history to record both 1,000 kills and 500 total blocks in her career, and currently has 1,041 kills and 521 career total blocks. The other three Bruins to have accomplished that feat are Davia Tomkus, Kim Krull and the Pac-10's Athlete of the Decade, Natalie Williams. Wiz followed that accomplishment with her first career double-double on Sept. 28 in Pauley Pavilion, posting 12 kills and 11 blocks (2 BS/9 BA) against Oregon State. Bachman earned her nickname of "Wiz" at the age of two, when a childhood friend couldn't pronounce an "L", turning "Liz" into "Wiz." For more information on All-America candidate Wiz Bachman, please refer to pages 14-15 of the UCLA media guide.
Bowles Reaches Career Milestone
Junior outside hitter Ashley Bowles became the 18th Bruin to reach 1,000 career kills on Friday night in Pauley Pavilion, and now has 1,006 career kills. Bowles entered the Oregon match needing just one kill for 1,000 on her career and easily exceeded that requirement. Bowles is the third current Bruin to reach the 1,000 career kill mark, joining Wiz Bachman and Kristee Porter in that accomplishment.
Setting Everyone Up
Junior setter Erika Selsor currently ranks third on UCLA's all-time career list with 3,761 to her credit. That number is also tops among the Pac-10's active setters. Selsor currently ranks 12th in the NCAA standings with 13.77 assists/game. With 72 assists at Arizona on Oct. 22, 1999, Selsor set a new UCLA standard with her seventh career match with 70 assists or more, breaking the previous record held by Ann Boyer (1985-88) and Selsor's predecessor, Kim Coleman (1994-97). Since then, she has upped that total to nine, most recently with a 70-assist performance against Texas A&M on Sept. 3. Selsor was named to the All-Tournament Team at the State Farm Women's Volleyball Classic.
Opposing Hitting Percentage Bottoms Out
Eight of UCLA's 14 opponents this season have hit below .200, with Texas A&M (.215), Hawaii (.203) and Oregon State (.204) barely breaking the Mendoza line. Washington checked out at -.010, while Washington State hit .101 for the match in the first weekend of Pac-10 play. Oregon followed two weeks later with a .041 team attack percentage. In matches against the top-four teams in the Sept. 18 AVCA poll, the Bruins held No. 1 Nebraska, No. 2 Hawaii, No. 3 Penn State and No. 4 Nebraska to a combined .219 attack percentage. Following UCLA's Sept. 10 match against the Cornhuskers, those four teams were averaging an attack percentage of .322 for their 2000 seasons. In 1999, UCLA held 25 of its 32 opponents (including the opponents in 15 of 18 Pac-10 matches) under .200, and 13 teams were held under .100.
UCLA Faces Nine Ranked Teams in Five Weekends
Considering both mileage traveled and the teams being played, the Bruins could very well have the nation's toughest schedule in 2000. The only team in the AVCA/USA Today top-eight that UCLA does not play is No. 5 Minnesota. Eight of UCLA's first 10 matches were against top-25 teams. UCLA has already played the top three teams in the current AVCA poll, and will face No. 4 USC on Friday night. In addition, Penn State was ranked No. 2 at the time of the Nittany Lions match with UCLA.
UCLA's academic schedule is on a quarter system, therefore the Bruins did not begin classes until Thursday, Sept. 28. UCLA had already finalized its 2000 schedule when the Bruins were invited to the State Farm Women's Volleyball Classic, adding the nation's premier tournament to the team's pre-conference schedule.
Many Bruins continue to move up on the school's career lists. Senior middle blocker Elisabeth Bachman is now ranked in all three of UCLA's career block categories with 104 block solos (2nd), 417 block assists (5th) and 521 total blocks (5th), and ranks at the top of the list among active Pac-10 players in total blocks. Ashley Bowles has also achieved the 1,000 kill milestone, checking in with 1,006 heading into the USC match. With 3,761 career assists, sophomore setter Erika Selsor leads the Pac-10 list of active setters, and is third-best in Bruin history.
Five of UCLA's seven freshmen have now seen match action this season. Redshirt freshman Ella Harley stepped in to UCLA's second middle blocker spot when Angela Eckmier was lost for the year with a torn ACL. Harley has done an admirable job stepping into that role, ranking second on the team with 0.88 blocks/game.
In the back row, Stacey Lee and Alyssa Rylander have shared the defensive specialist role opposite senior Michelle Quon, with Lee playing in 41 games and averaging 2.05 digs/game with eight aces, and Rylander posting one ace to go along with 1.59 digs/game.
Other freshmen seeing court time include Krystal McFarland, who has subbed for both Ashley Bowles and Lauren Fendrick in various situations. Cira Wright has subbed in as a front-row defensive replacement for Selsor, and has racked up nine blocks in 16 games played.
Criss-Crossing the Country
If you think that Presidential Candidates George W. Bush and Al Gore are logging a lot of miles on the campaign trail, just take a look at the Bruins schedule during the first month of the season.
UCLA departed Westwood on Aug. 23 for Gainesville, FL (round-trip of approx. 4,850 miles) before heading to Honolulu for the Hawaiian Airlines Wahine Volleyball Classic (round-trip: 5,100 miles) and going back east for the Adidas Invitational in South Bend, IN (round-trip: 4,190 miles). The month concluded with a Pac-10 road trip to the Bay Area schools, a comparitively miniscule 760 mile round-trip from Los Angeles to San Francisco. Along the way, UCLA faced off against eight teams away from Pauley Pavilion that appeared in either poll at match time.
Total mileage for the Bruins between the start of the season and Oct. 1? Approximately 14,900 miles.