Volleyball Hit The Road For Pac-10 Matches Versus Arizona, Arizona State

Oct. 17, 2000

SEATTLE - Win Some, Lose Some: Washington got into the win column last Friday by posting its first Pac-10 and home victory this season over the visiting Oregon Ducks in four games. The Huskies then fell the next night to a much improved Oregon State squad also in four games.

Youth Movement: The Huskies experienced a youth movement last weekend with a number of freshmen seeing significant playing time. Freshman Kara Bjorklund (Olympia, Wash.) started in her second career game on Friday versus Oregon, while classmate Egan Metcalf (Kenmore, Wash.) made her first appearance in the starting lineup against Oregon State Saturday. Both players reached career highs in almost every category, combining for 26 kills on 49 attempts (.469 hitting) and 16 total blocks.

Moving On Up: Washington junior quick hitter Lisa Underhill (Vista, Calif.) is climbing up the Husky record books. Within the past three weeks, Underhill has entered the all-time top 10 in block assists (9th, 226) and with her three-block performance against Oregon State, she is now 10th in career total blocks with 255. Junior setter Britni Churnside (Eugene, Ore.) also is currently seventh in assists with 1,386, while Underhill has the third-best hitting percentage in UW school history (.272). Both players are ranked among the active Pac-10 Conference career leaders in blocks (Underhill - 6th) and assists (Churnside - 7th).

Double Their Pleasure: Washington's list of players with double-double performances has grown over the past few weeks. Junior setter Britni Churnside currently has reached double figures in both assists and digs in four consecutive matches, while recording eight double-doubles overall this season. Junior Allison Richardson (Hemet, Calif.) is second on the team in double-doubles with four, followed by sophomore Gretchen Maurer (San Clemente, Calif.) with three and sophomore Paige Benjamin (Redmond, Wash.) with two.

Around the Pac-10: Perfection went out the window last weekend as the conference's top two teams, USC and Arizona, clashed in a match of top ranked teams. The Wildcats, who lost the day prior in five games to UCLA, surprised the Trojans with a three-game sweep, USC's first loss of the season... In other surprising notes, Stanford's Logan Tom, a starter on this year's U.S. women's Olympic squad, returned to lead the Cardinal past California.

Scouting Arizona: The Huskies will look to avenge their loss to the Wildcats (15-2 overall, 8-1 Pac-10) earlier this season as Arizona swept the match in three games. The Wildcats are riding high after defeating previously unbeaten USC last weekend after dropping a heartbreaker to UCLA the night before. Under head coach David Rubio, Arizona returned five of its six starters from last season including Marisa DaLee, Lisa Rutledge and Shannon Torregrosa, who all average around three kills a game. Setter Dana Burkholder has led the Wildcats with a 14.31 assists per game average, while helping her team to a phenomenal .326 team hitting percentage, which ranks first among Pac-10 teams. Arizona has won 19 of the two teams' 32 meetings, including six of seven in the past three seasons.

Scouting Arizona State: The Sun Devils (12-7 overall, 4-5 Pac-10) will try to rebound this weekend after dropping their previous three matches to Oregon State, USC and UCLA. ASU is led by outside hitter Amanda Burbridge, who averages over five kills per game to go along with 3.97 digs per game. Setter Cheryle Anglin runs the team's offense, while Jami Coughlin and Julia Leddy are also threats on offense. The Huskies hold an 18-15 edge in the two teams' all-time series, with Arizona State sweeping the past three meetings.

In The Stats: In the sixth set of Pac-10 Conference statistics released October 16, junior Lisa Underhill is ranked in two categories, blocks per game (10th - 1.04) and hitting percentage (8th - .322). Sophomore Gretchen Maurer also is ranked 10th in service aces per game with a 0.31 mark, while junior Britni Churnside rounds out the group with the ninth-best assists per game average of 6.89.

Promotions, Promotions: The following promotional offerings are on tap for upcoming Washington volleyball matches in October and early November: *Every Friday - Family Friday: For $20 receive five tickets, five hotdogs and five sodas. *Oct. 29 vs. Idaho State - Free admission *Nov. 2 vs. Stanford - Free Baden mini-volleyballs while supplies last. *Nov. 3 vs. California - Free admission for faculty and staff with a coupon, Jr. Husky Night, Hydro Night. Group tickets are available for $1 each for groups of 25 or more. For more information call (206) 543-2200 or visit www.gohuskies.com.

On The Tube: The Huskies road match at Washington State (Oct. 27) will be televised live at 7:30 p.m. (PT). Washington's match with Oregon State on November 10 also may be chosen as the 'wildcard' selection as a specific match has yet to be picked. Fox Sports Net will televise seven other Pac-10 women's volleyball matches in 2000, all of which will air Fridays from September 15 through November 17 at 7:30 p.m. PT.

The New Arena: For the second straight season, the Huskies will play their home schedule at the Hec Edmundson Pavilion Addition, while the new 10,000-seat Bank of America Arena is completed. The new arena will not open until November 24, when the women's basketball team plays host to defending national champion Connecticut.

The Best Of The Best: The 2000 Husky schedule once again includes some of the best volleyball teams in the nation. Six of the UW opponents, including number one UCLA, have been ranked among the top 25 teams in the nation according to the preseason USA Today/American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll released August 14. Besides the Bruins, the Huskies also will face #3 Stanford, #7 USC, #10 Arizona, #18 Texas and #19 Texas A&M this season.

Gillis Named Assistant Coach: Former Gonzaga Prep High School head coach Steve Gillis has been named an assistant volleyball coach at the University of Washington. Gillis replaces Diane Flick, who took over the head coaching position at Western Washington University. Gillis, a native of Spokane, Wash., will be in charge of the team's defensive efforts on the court and will play a major role in the Huskies' recruiting efforts. In addition, he will assist UW head coach Bill Neville in all administrative aspects of the program. A 1985 graduate of Westmont College in Santa Barbara, Calif., Gillis most recently taught history and English at Gonzaga Prep in Spokane, Wash., and coached the girls' volleyball team, beginning in 1995.

Head Coach Bill Neville: On October 4, 1991, Washington head coach Bill Neville coached his first game as a Husky, a 3-0 win at Oregon. Now, 10 years later, Neville remains as the fifth women's volleyball head coach in school history, compiling a 123-128 record. Neville has coached two All-Americans in his time at the UW, including Makare Desilets (1997) and Angela Bransom (1996), while leading the team to three NCAA tournament berths and a Sweet 16 appearance in 1997. A world-renowned figure in the national and international coaching circles, Neville was the head coach of the Canadian men's national team at the 1976 Olympics and was an assistant with the U.S. men's program at both the 1968 and 1984 Olympics. Neville's career record of 260-243 includes seven seasons at Montana State.

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