Women's Volleyball Prepares For The Pioneer Classic

Sept. 9, 1999

Pioneer Classic (host: Denver)
September 10-11, 1999 -- Denver, CO

LOS ANGELES -- The 1999 season is underway for the Bruin women's volleyball team, and it started with a runner-up finish at the 12th-Annual Hawaiian Airlines Wahine Volleyball Classic over Labor Day weekend.

The 10th-ranked Bruins posted wins over Pittsburgh and Minnesota (#30, AVCA) before falling to the fourth-ranked host Hawai'i in the tournament's championship match.

Next up for the Bruins will be this weekend's Pioneer Classic, and four matches in two days against the likes of Wright State, host Denver, Idaho State and Lamar. Of those four teams, it will be a first-time meeting with UCLA for three of them, as Lamar is the only opponent the Bruin women's volleyball team has previously faced. The Bruins lead that all-time series 6-0.

Pioneer Classic Tournament Field
All of the remaining teams in the round-robin field have opened their 1999 schedules. Idaho State came out of the gate quickly, topping Western Montana in their home- and season-opener before cruising to the championship match of the UC Irvine Tournament. The Bengals fell to host UC Irvine, 3-2 in the title match.

After losing its season opener to Louisiana-Lafayette at home, Lamar rebounded with three wins at Louisiana Tech's tournament, with 3-1 wins over the host Lady Techsters, Tulane and Georgia State. Wright State is off to an 0-4 start with losses to North Carolina State, Utah, SMU and host Texas Tech at the Texas Tech/Four Points Classic in Lubbock, Texas.

This weekend's host, Denver, is 1-2, coming off a season-opening home win over Wyoming and losses at Colorado and a 3-1 loss to Cal at home on Saturday.

Porter, Bowles All-Tournament at Wahine Classic
For the second time in as many years, sophomore OH Ashley Bowles was named to the All-Tournament team at the Hawaiian Airlines Wahine Volleyball Classic. Over the weekend, Bowles averaged 3.58 kills, 2.92 digs and 0.33 blocks per game while starting all three matches.

Fellow All-Tourney sophomore Kristee Porter, however, was one of the stars of the tournament, averaging an eye-popping 5.92 kills, including a 31-kill effort on Monday night in a 3-1 loss to Hawaii. It was the fifth time in her Bruin career that Porter had topped the 30-kill plateau, but the first time she had accomplished the feat in less than five games.

Head Coach Andy Banachowski
Entering his 33rd season on the Bruin bench, UCLA head coach Andy Banachowski remains one of the top coaches in his profession. On October 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 (847-201, 33rd year). The only other collegiate volleyball coach, men's or women's with more career wins than Banachowski is UCLA men's coach Al Scates, who notched career victory number 900 during the 1997 season. Banachowski played under Scates at UCLA and also got his start in coaching with Scates. Under Banachowski's leadership, the Bruins have won six national championships, including three NCAA titles.

Middle Blockers Shine in Opener
The UCLA trio of starting middle blocker Tamika Johnson, team captain Elisabeth Bachman and Amy Nihipali combined for an impressive .642 hitting percentage on 18 kills with no errors in Friday's opener against Pittsburgh. As the tournament progressed, Tamika Johnson posted double-digit kills in the next two matches, with 11 against Minnesota and 15 against Hawai'i. She was also involved in seven BA's against the Golden Gophers and five total blocks (1BS/4BA) against the Rainbow Wahine.

When the Bruins ran out of subs in the key third game against Minnesota, both Johnson and Bachman wound up with some rare playing time in the back row. Both responded with successful serving and passing, despite limited drills in those aspects of the game during the pre-season.

Golden Gophers Give Bruins a Scare
Nobody who was present in the Stan Sheriff Center in Hawaii on Sunday afternoon had ever seen anything like it. With Minnesota serving at match point, up 14-12 in game three, UCLA's Kristee Porter hit into a block that caromed off of the antenna and onto the floor, in-bounds. The play was originally called a legal block, and both officials signaled a point for Minnesota and match-over. After conferring with the linesman, however, the up-official overturned her call, giving the Bruins a sideout and new life.

Porter then served three straight points to give the Bruins a 15-14 advantage. Following a series of six sideouts, which included serves by middle blockers Bachman and Johnson, Porter's 25th kill of the match put the game away, giving UCLA a 16-14 win. From there, the Bruins took game four 15-5, and went out to a 9-3 lead in the rally-scored fifth game, eventually taking the game, 15-9, and the match.

Fendrick, Millichap Shine in Hawaiian Sun
Two freshman saw playing time during the Wahine Classic, with Lauren Fendrick starting on the right-side, and Stacy Millichap serving as a back-row sub for middle blocker Tamika Johnson. Fendrick played in 11 of the 12 possible tournament games, averaging 1.64 kills, 2.73 digs, and a team-high 1.00 blocks per game. Millichap racked up three service aces (0.25/gm) to go with a 1.58 digs per game average. The team's third freshman, Ella Harley, traveled with the team but did not play.

Porter Begins 1999 With All-Tournament Performance
There was no doubt about it, UCLA sophomore outside hitter Kristee Porter was one of the stars of the Hawaiian Airlines Rainbow Volleyball Classic. During tournament play, Porter extended her double-figure kills streak to 27 matches, and finished off the weekend with a 31-kill performance in Monday night's 3-1 loss to Hawaii. For the duration of the tournament, Porter averaged 5.92 kills per game (72 kills, 12 games) and never left the floor. She has four service aces, one shy of the team lead (0.33 average), and has 30 digs for a 2.50 average and one block assist.

Quon Digging for More
Despite seeing action only in the back row as a sub for middle blocker Elisabeth Bachman or Amy Nihipali, Michelle Quon is comfortably leading the team in digs per game average. Over the course of 12 tournament contests, Quon is averaging 3.08 digs/game and is the only bruin over the 3.00 mark. The player Banachowski describes as "the best pure defensive player we've had," Quon has also notched three service aces and four attacks during her back-row action.

Bruins Second Marathon Match of Weekend vs. Hawaii
UCLA's last two matches have gone more than two hours, with the four-game loss to Hawai'i checking in at 2 hours, 16 minutes, just 12 minutes shorter than the five-game win over Minnesota. Each game against Hawai'i took longer than the previous one, finishing with a 34-minute game four that included 39 sideouts as opposed to 26 points scored. Game scores and times were as follows: 7-15 (25 min), 15-11 (26 min), 15-10 (32 min), 15-11 (34 min).

Amy Nihipali is the only Bruin to see game action who does not have a dig to her credit ... Four rostered players will not make the trip to Denver: #5 Taylor Rodger, #9 Lyn Embree, #13 Jackie Levin and #19 Lauren Hogan ... After taking off the 1998 season for a medical redshirt (knee injury) Celeste Peterson saw action in three games during last weekend's tournament, giving Ashley Bowles a break in the matches against Pittsburgh and Minnesota. Peterson recorded six kills, one ace and two digs in her three games of action ... As a team, the Bruins have recorded 37 more kills than their opponents and are hitting at a .253 clip as opposed to their opponents' .208 ... UCLA's high kill production is contributing to the team's 15.4 kills/game average ... Bruin setter Erika Selsor is averaging 13.50 assists/game ... UCLA has been out-blocked by a 2.58-1.92 per-game margin, but the Bruins are out-digging their opponents by 1.6 digs per game (15.4-13.8).

This Week's Schedule - September 7-12
The Bruins have a quick turnaround between tournaments this weekend, returning from Hawaii to Los Angeles at 5:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning and leaving for Denver on Thursday afternoon. The Pioneer Classic has a round-robin format with each of the five teams playing four games in two days.

Fri.    Sept.   10  vs. Wright State    Denver, CO  2:30 p.m. MT
Fri.    Sept.   10  at  Denver          Denver, CO  7:30 p.m. MT
Sat.    Sept.   11  vs. Idaho State     Denver, CO  10:00 a.m. MT
Sat.    Sept.   11  vs. Lamar           Denver, CO  5:00 p.m. MT

UCLA Quick Facts

1999 Overall Record: 2-1
1998 Overall Record: 16-14
1998 Pac-10 Record: 13-5 (3rd)
Ranking: 10th, AVCA/USA Today
Head Coach: Andy Banachowski
Career Record: 847-201 (33rd season)
Media Relations Contact: Amy Symons
SID Phone: 310/206-6831
Website: www.uclabruins.com

VCA/USA Today Poll (9/6/99)

No. School (1st place)  Points
1.  Pacific (34)            1445
2.  Penn State (8)          1364
3.  Hawai'i (9)             1359
4.  Long Beach State (8)    1332
5.  Nebraska                1242
6.  Florida                 1190
7.  Stanford (1)            1162
8.  Texas                   1059
9.  UC Santa Barbara        1005
10. UCLA                    1004
11. Pepperdine              842
12. BYU                     778
13. Wisconsin               656
14. Ohio State              597
15. Arizona                 595
16. Arkansas                467
17. Texas A&M               465
18. Clemson                 462
19. Colorado State          440
20. USC                     396
21. Univ. of San Diego      369
22. Illinois                229
23. Colorado                192
24. Kansas State            148
25. Michigan                133

Received Votes (rank): Minnesota (32nd)

Volleyball Magazine Poll (9/7/99)

No. School  
1.  Pacific
2.  Penn State
3.  Long Beach State
4.  Nebraska
5.  Texas
6.  Florida
7.  Hawai'i
8.  Stanford
9.  BYU
10. UCLA

1999 UCLA Record ... all matches 2-1 vs. conference opponents 0-0 vs. ranked opponents(at match time) 0-1 vs. all district ranked teams 0-1 home matches at Pauley Pavilion 0-0 playing on a Friday 1-0 playing on a Saturday 0-0 playing on a Sunday 1-0 playing Monday through Thursday 0-1

The 1999 Bruins' Record When They... Won 1st game 1-1 Lost 1st game 1-0 Won 2nd game 1-0 Lost 2nd game 1-1 Won 3rd game 2-0 Lost 3rd game 0-1 Won 4th game 1-0 Lost 4th game 0-1 Played five games 1-0

Tournament Ticket

Wright State
Nickname: Raiders
Current Ranking: not ranked
Location: Dayton, Ohio
Enrollment: 16,033
Head Coach: Joylynn Tracy, 2nd year
1999 Record ('98 record): 0-4 (11-18,5-7 MCC)
Series: First meeting

Nickname: Pioneers
Current Ranking: not ranked
Location: Denver, Colo.
Enrollment: 8,870
Head Coach: Beth Kuwata, 4th year
1999 Record ('98 record): 1-2 (8-17,NA)
Series: First meeting

Idaho State
Nickname: Bengals
Location: Pocatello, Idaho
Enrollment: 12,553
Head Coach: Bill MacLachlan
1999 Record ('98 record): 3-1 (8-20,1-15 Big Sky)
Series: First Meeting

Nickname: Lady Cardinals
Location: Beaumont, Texas
Enrollment: 8,194
Head Coach: Jim Barnes, 4th year
1999 Record ('98 record): 3-1 (19-12,11-9 S'land)
Series: UCLA leads 6-0
Last Meeting: UCLA won 2-0, 1992

1999 Bruins in the Rankings

            AVCA/USA Today  VB Magazine
Preseason   10              10
9/6/99      10              10

1999 UCLA Bruins Numerical Roster

No. Name                Pos. Ht.  Yr.  Exp. Hometown (High School)
1   Elisabeth Bachman   MB   6-3  Jr.* 2V   Lakeville, MN (Lakeville)
2   Ashley Bowles      OH/S  6-0  So.  1V   Manhattan Beach, CA (Mira Costa)
3   Kate Dwyer          S    5-7  So.  1V   Laguna Beach, CA (Laguna Beach)
4   Kristee Porter      OH   5-11 So.  1V   Tyler, TX (John Tyler)
5   Taylor Rodger       OH   5-8  Fr.* HS   San Diego, CA (Francis Parker)
6   Stacy Millichap   OH/DS  5-7  Fr.  HS   Woodside, CA (St. Francis)
7   Ella Harley         OH   6-0  Fr.  HS   Santa Cruz, CA (Archbishop Mitty)
8   Erika Selsor        S    5-6  So.  1V   Linden, CA (Linden)
9   Lyn Embree          OH   5-10 Sr.  2V   Los Angeles, CA (Beverly Hills)
10  Tamika Johnson    MB/OH  6-3  Sr.  3V   Indianapolis, IN (Cathedral)
12  Celeste Peterson    OH   5-11 So.* 1V   Boca Raton, FL (Spanish River)
13  Jackie Levin       S/DS  5-7  So.* 1V   Novato, CA (The Branson School)
14  Lauren Fendrick     OH   6-2  Fr.  HS   Carlsbad, CA (Carlsbad)
15  Michelle Quon       DS   5-5  Jr.  2V   Dana Point, CA (Dana Hills)
16  Angela Eckmier      MB   6-1  So.  1V   North Hills, CA (Van Nuys)
17  Amy Nihipali        MB   6-1  Jr.  2V   Anaheim, CA (Esperanza)
18  Danielle Ryba       MB   6-0  So.  1V   Palos Verdes Estates, CA (Peninsula)
19  Lauren Hogan        OH   5-11 So.  1V   Long Beach, CA (Wilson)
* indicates already utilized redshirt year

Head Coach: Andy Banachowski, 33rd year (UCLA '68) Assistant Coaches: Kim Jagd, 7th year (UCLA '87), Burt Fuller, 6th year (Chico State '86)

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