#1 UCLA Travels to #2 USC, Hosts Oregon State

Sept. 17, 2012

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Wednesday, Sept. 19
7 p.m. - #1 UCLA at #2 USC
Online Coverage: Gametracker | Audio

Friday, Sept. 21
8 p.m. - Oregon State at #1 UCLA
TV: Pac-12 Networks
Online Coverage: Gametracker | Audio

The defending national champion and top-ranked Bruins open Pac-12 Conference play this week, traveling to #2 USC on Wednesday at 7 p.m. and hosting Oregon State on Friday at 8 p.m. Both matches will be televised on ESPNU (USC) and Pac-12 Networks (Oregon State).

#1 VS. #2
UCLA and USC will meet as the #1 and #2 teams in the nation for just the second time in the storied rivalry. The only previous matchup was on Oct. 19, 1984 at USC. #2 UCLA beat #1 USC in five (14-16, 9-15, 15-13, 15-10, 15-4).

Gametracker and free audio will be provided for both matches this week. Links will be available on the women's volleyball schedule page at UCLABruins.com.

In its inaugural season, the Pac-12 Networks brings an unprecedented level of exposure to its acclaimed member institutions that have combined to collect a record 450 NCAA titles. The 82 televised Pac-12 women's volleyball matches are just a portion of 217 exciting events including football, men's and women's soccer, men's water polo, field hockey and cross country telecast over 100 days this fall, putting the Conference of Champions on a national stage.

The Pac-12 Networks launched Aug. 15 and will consist of one national and six regional networks devoted solely to the Pac-12. In addition to the hundreds of live televised Pac-12 sporting events, Pac-12 Networks subscribers will have access to their carrier's TV Everywhere platform, providing access to all Pac-12 Networks programming on any device through their broadband service. Fans can find out if they can get Pac-12 Networks by visiting Pac-12.com or by contacting their television provider.

To see if your television provider is currently signed up as a partner who carries the Pac-12 Networks, please click here to be directed to the channel locator. For additional questions regarding the Pac-12 Networks, visit Pac-12.com.

The Bruins head to the Pacific Northwest next weekend, facing fifth-ranked Washington on Wednesday, Sept. 26 and Washington State on Friday, Sept. 28. Both matches start at 7 p.m. and the Washington contest will be aired on Pac-12 Networks.

Riding a seven-match winning streak and seeing previous-#1 Nebraska fall to Iowa State on Saturday, the Bruins moved back to the top spot in this week's AVCA Coaches poll. UCLA gained 51 points from last week and had 39 of the 60 first-place votes. The Bruins were ranked as the preseason #1 for just the third time in program history. On the last two occasions, UCLA won the National Championship in 1990 and finished runner-up in 1992. The Bruins are one of five Pac-12 teams ranked in the Top 8 in the nation (#2 USC, #5 Washington, #6 Stanford and #8 Oregon). The Bruins are 2-1 against Top 25 teams this season, falling at then-#4 (now-#3) Nebraska on Aug. 25, and winning at then-#9 (now-#7) Hawai'i on Sept. 9 and then-#18 (now-#14) Pepperdine on Sept. 12. This week's Volleyball Magazine rankings come out on Tuesday. UCLA was also ranked #1 in the preseason Pac-12 Coaches poll.

The Bruins hit .519 as a team against Idaho on Sept. 7, which was the highest hitting percentage in a match for UCLA in the rally scoring era (since 2001) ... through Sept. 9, UCLA was third in the nation in blocks per set at 3.12 and 13th in hitting percentage at .299 ... UCLA has hit .295 or better six times during its seven-match winning streak ... the Bruins have held their opponent under a .200 hitting percentage in each of their eight wins this season ... UCLA is 6-0 when winning the first set ... junior Kelly Reeves surpassed the 600-career dig mark at Hawai'i and now has 625 as a Bruin ... after being held below the mark all last season, senior Tabi Love has cracked the 20-kill mark three times in the first nine matches (20 at Nebraska, career-high 26 at Hawai'i, 24 at Colorado State) ... senior Bojana Todorovic reached 20 digs in a match for the fourth time against Colorado State. She is 18 digs away from becoming the 21st member of the UCLA 1,000-dig club. Todorovic also became the 18th Bruin to tally 100 aces for her career when she had one at Hawai'i ... senior Rachael Kidder has surpassed the 1,100-kill mark and has 1,122 for her career, which ranks her 24th on UCLA's all-time list. Next up are Nana Meriwether (23rd, 1,157), Marissa Hatchett (22nd, 1,168) and Samantha Shaver (21st, 1,169) ... in 10 fewer matches, Lowe has already surpassed her kill (53 in 2011, 79 this year) and block (15-19) totals from last season.

USC (12-0) is one of eight remaining undefeated teams in the nation and swept all three matches last weekend in Fort Worth, Texas against TCU, Lehigh and Prairie View A&M. The Trojans are 2-0 against ranked teams (Northern Iowa and San Diego) and have one common opponent with the Bruins (Notre Dame - USC in three, UCLA in four). The Trojans are hitting .297 as a team and are averaging 15.02 kills, 1.33 aces, 15.07 digs and 2.17 blocks per set. Four players are averaging at least 2.00 kps, led by the 4.03 kps for senior Katie Fuller, who is also third with 2.51 dps. Freshman Samantha Bricio is second with 3.69 kps and 13 aces, junior Sara Shaw is third with 2.78 kps and junior Alexis Olgard is fourth with 2.11 kps. Sophomore Hayley Crone handles the setting duties and is averaging 11.38 assists per set and a team-best 15 aces to go with 2.62 dps, which is second on the team. Junior Natalie Hagglund is first with 4.05 dps, while senior Natasha Siljkovic holds a team-best 1.04 bps. Mick Haley is in his 12th season as USC's head coach and has a record of 296-64 to go with a 1,069-252 mark in 35-plus years of coaching.

The Bruins lead the all-time series with the Trojans 57-52, as the teams won on each other's home court last season. UCLA won at the Galen Center last Sept. 9 in three (25-19, 25-17, 25-17). Rachael Kidder had 14 kills and no errors in 29 attempts for a .483 hitting percentage, while Kelly Reeves added 11 digs, as the Bruins hit .355 as a team. On Nov. 25 at the John Wooden Center, Kidder had 18 kills, Karsta Lowe posted 12 kills and Reeves added 12 digs, but the Trojans won in four (24-26, 26-24, 25-21, 25-20). The Bruins are 21-19 all-time at USC.

The Beavers (10-2) play at Oregon on Wednesday before heading to the John Wooden Center on Friday. Oregon State won all three matches at the Fullerton Classic last weekend, beating Santa Clara and San Diego State in four and Cal State Fullerton in three. OSU is 1-1 against ranked teams this season, beating Penn State in five while losing to Kansas State in five. The Beavers are hitting .213 as a team, averaging 12.75 kills, 1.17 aces, 16.88 digs and 2.85 blocks per set. Senior Camille Saxton leads the club with 3.98 kps, sophomore Arica Nassar is second with 2.56 kps and sophomore Laura Schaudt is third at 2.18 kps. Sophomore Tayla Woods (7.03 assists per set) and senior Megan McBride (6.91) have shared setting duties. Junior Becky Defoe is tops on the squad with 5.58 dps, while Nassar is averaging 1.42 bps. Taras Liskevych is in his ninth season at Oregon State and has an 85-133 record to go with a 352-217 mark in 15-plus years of coaching.

The Bruins have won nine straight matchups and 19 of 20 against the Beavers, and lead the all-time series 50-3. Last year, UCLA won in three at the John Wooden Center (25-14, 25-17, 25-14), as Tabi Love had 13 kills and Zoë Nightingale posted 10 kills. The Bruins won in four in Corvallis on Nov. 12 (25-17, 18-25, 25-16, 25-18). Rachael Kidder had a double-double with 18 kills and 11 digs, while Love added 13 kills. UCLA is 24-2 all-time at home against Oregon State. The Beavers' last win in the series was in five on Oct. 12, 2007 at Pauley Pavilion.

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