Oct. 29, 2011
STANFORD, Calif. - For the first time since 2000, the sixth-ranked Bruins completed a season sweep of #5 Stanford, defeating the Cardinal in three sets on Saturday at Maples Pavilion. Set scores were 26-24, 27-25, 25-10. Junior Rachael Kidder (16) and sophomore Mariana Aquino (10) were each in double figures in kills, while senior Lainey Gera added 18 digs.
The Bruins, who staved off three Stanford set points in both the first and second stanzas, improve to 20-3 overall and post their 13th-straight, 20-win season. UCLA also moves to 13-2 in Pac-12 play, remaining in a tie for first in the conference following USC's sweep at California. The Cardinal, which had not been swept at home by the Bruins since 2000, fall to 17-4 and 11-4 in league.
Aquino hit a career-best .444 with only two errors in 18 attempts. Junior Tabi Love posted eight kills, senior Lauren Van Orden added 39 assists and sophomore Kelly Reeves recorded 13 digs and five kills. Junior Bojana Todorovic notched eight digs and sophomore Meg Norton added five. The Bruins had eight aces for the second match in a row and hit .226 as a team.
The Bruins stormed out to an early 8-3 lead in the opening set. After UCLA scored three and Stanford countered with the next three, the Bruins scored five in a row on a Cardinal service error, a Reeves ace, a kill by freshman Zoë Nightingale and back-to-back spikes from Kidder to go up 8-3. Stanford slowly chipped away at its deficit and eventually came back to tie the score at 16, but back-to-back errors kept UCLA in the lead at 18-16. However, the Cardinal netted the next three to take their first lead of the set at 19-18.
Three of the next four by the Bruins on a solo block from Kidder and kills by Nightingale and Aquino put the visitors back up by one at 21-20, but four in a row by Stanford gave the home squad three set points. The Bruins saved all three points on a solo block and kill by Love and a Van Orden ace to tie it up at 24. The Cardinal then had back-to-back attack errors to give the Bruins a 26-24, comeback victory. Kidder led the Bruins with four kills, while Love added three. Gera and Reeves both had five digs, as Stanford out-hit UCLA .105 to .095.
Stanford held an early 5-3 edge in set two, but UCLA came back with five of six on two kills by Kidder, an Aquino kill and two Cardinal errors to take an 8-6 edge. The Bruins had their lead cut to one at 9-8 and 13-12, but came back with 3-0 runs both times to extend their advantage to four. In the second instance, Reeves had a kill, Stanford committed an attack error and Todorovic served an ace to make it 16-12. But runs of 4-0 and 10-3 put Stanford on top 22-19.
A Love kill and a Gera ace closed the gap to one at 22-21, but Stanford scored two of the next three to go up 24-22 to earn a pair of set points. However, Aquino and Kidder had back-to-back kills to tie things at 24. The Cardinal sided out to earn their third set point of the set and sixth of the match, but Kidder had two straight kills to give the Bruins a 26-25 lead and an ace by Aquino completed another comeback win, this time 27-25. Kidder again paced UCLA with eight kills, while Aquino added four. Gera posted eight digs and Todorovic had six, as Stanford out-hit UCLA .250 to .205.
The Bruins never trailed in the third set to finish off the sweep. Tied at two, the Bruins scored four in a row on kills by Aquino and Love and two Stanford attack errors. The Bruins extended their advantage to six at 13-7 and then moved it above double figures with five in a row. Van Orden had a kill and teamed up with Nightingale on a block, which was followed by a Stanford attack error, an ace by Norton and a Nightingale kill to make it 18-7.
After a Stanford sideout, the Bruins recorded four of the next five on a Cardinal service error, kills by Love and Aquino and an Aquino/Van Orden combo block to make it 22-9. The Cardinal got the next point, but the Bruins scored the final three on a Stanford service and attack error and a Todorovic ace to close out a 25-10 victory. Aquino and Kidder each had four kills in the third, while Love added three. Reeves posted six digs and Gera had five. The Bruins hit .448 with 14 kills and only one error in 29 attempts, as the Cardinal hit .056.
The Bruins return home to face Washington on Friday, Nov. 4 at 7 p.m. and Washington State on Sunday, Nov. 6 at 1 p.m.