Volleyball Can't Fend Off Bears, Fall 3-2 In Grudge Match

Sept. 27, 2002

EUGENE -- A strong offensive attack, a stingy defense and a dominant performance at the net came up just short for the University of Oregon volleyball team, which dropped a 30-27, 25-30, 27-30, 36-34, 15-11, match to California in front of 927 fans at McArthur Court Friday evening.

Oregon's (9-7 overall, 0-3 Pac-10) offense was dominant throughout with three players tallying 10 or more kills, including 19 each by outside hitter Dariam Acevedo and middle blocker Lindsay Closs. On the right side, sophomore Lauren Westendorf accounted for a career-high 14 kills and added seven digs to Oregon's defensive effort, which didn't give any easy points to the Bear attack.

'It doesn't matter what happens in the beginning of the match,' Westendorf said. 'It's how you execute in the end.'

In the end, Oregon couldn't fend off the Bears (10-1, 1-1), who took the lead 2-0 in the fifth game after a service ace, and never trailed. Oregon was unable to find its offense rythym after dominating for three games. California contined to go to outside hitter Mia Jerkov, who finished the match with 32 kills in 80 attempts and added 17 digs and two blocks.

'It is one of the best Pac-10 matches we've played in a while,' said Closs, who added nine blocks with her 19 kills. 'But in the fifth game we were playing not to lose.'

In addition to the Ducks solid offensive performance, the Oregon defense fought off numerous California attacks, led by junior libero Lindsay Murphy, who had tied a career-high with 20 digs. Acevedo added 18 digs for her second consecutive double double. Defensive specialist Katie O'Neil added 11 digs and outside hitter Heather Gilmore had eight.

'We did a lot of the things that we have been working on,' Oregon head coach Carl Ferreira said. 'We out-hit them, out-dug them and out-blocked them. If we continue to make progress we will continue to get better and walk away with the result we are looking for.'

Oregonresumes Pac-10 play tomorrow versus No. 4 Stanford at 7 p.m.

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