No. 2 Volleyball Makes Home Debut

Sept. 29, 2004

THIS WEEK: The No. 2 Washington volleyball team (10-0, 2-0 Pac-10) makes its home debut this week with Pac-10 matches against Oregon (8-3, 1-0 Pac-10) and Oregon State (7-3, 0-1 Pac-10). The Huskies open against Oregon on Friday at 7 p.m. and face OSU on Saturday at 7 p.m. Washington boasts a 10 match win streak, including Pac-10 wins over USC and UCLA last week. Oregon lost to Oregon State 3-1 in its first week of Pac-10 play.

UW RANKED NO. 2 IN AVCA POLL: After defeating second-ranked USC last weekend, the Washington volleyball team took over the No. 2 spot in the USA Today/CSTV Top 25 poll tabulated by the AVCA. Washington received 1,573 votes and 23 first-place votes to pick up its highest national ranking in program history. Other Pac-10 teams ranked among the top 25 this week are No. 3 USC, No. 10 UCLA, No. 11 Stanford, No. 12 California and No. 17 Arizona.

SCOUTING OREGON: The Oregon Ducks (8-3, 0-1 Pac-10) are coming off a double whammy last weekend with a loss to Oregon State (3-1) in its Pac-10 opener and a loss of senior rightside hitter Lauren Westerdorf to an ACL injury. Westerdorf was leading the team with 5.06 kpg and had recorded double-digit kills in all 11 matches. The Ducks will now rely on Kelly Russell and Sarah Mason to pick up the slack. Russell averages 3.79 kpg, while Mason chips in 3.37 kpg. Heather Madison runs Oregon's offense and averages 11.92 assists per game. Oregon leads the Pac-10 with 2.74 sapg and its 16.65 kpg rank third.

SCOUTING OREGON STATE: Oregon State (7-3, 1-0 Pac-10) has won four matches in a row, including matches over No. 23 San Diego (3-2) and Oregon (3-1). Senior Allison Lawrence had 17 kills in the win over Oregon and became just the 10th player in Beaver history to reach 1,000 career kills. Lawrence leads the team with 3.92 kpg and 2.95 dpg. Desma Stovall ranks fourth in the Pac-10 with 12.23 apg. Abby Windell ranks second on the team 2.63 kpg and leads the squad with 1.11 bpg.

ALL-TIME SERIES: Washington leads Oregon 44-16 in the all-time series and has won the last six matches in a row. The Huskies also hold the advantage in the all-time series against OSU, 37-21. UW has won the last four match-ups against the Beavers.

TOMASEVIC NAMED PAC-10 PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Senior outside hitter Sanja Tomasevic has been named Pac-10 Volleyball Player of the Week for Sept. 20-26. Tomasevic, led Washington to wins at No. 10 UCLA and No. 2 USC, the Huskies' first road sweep of the Los Angeles schools since 1997 and second all-time. Against the Bruins, Tomasevic collected 27 kills, 12 digs and eight block assists, while hitting at a .453 clip. She followed that with 18 kills and 14 digs in the Huskies' five-game upset win over the Women of Troy. For the weekend, Tomasevic recorded 45 kills (5.00 kpg), 26 digs (2.89 dpg), nine blocks (1.00 bpg), and 50.5 points (5.61 ppg).

HUSKIE STIFFLE OPPONENT OFFENSES: Washington has held its opponents to a .116 hitting percentage this season to lead the Pac-10. UW opponents have hit above .200 just once, when USC hit at a .284 clip.

UW SHUTS THEM OUT: Washington's first eight wins of the season came in straight games. The 24-straight game wins set a UW record. The streak came to an end on Sept. 23 when UCLA won game two against the Huskies.

1,000 KILL CLUB: With 18 kills against Butler on Sept. 3 Sanja Tomasevic became just the 11th player in Husky history to tally 1,000 career kills. She currently ranks 10th on the Husky all-time chart with 1,082 kills.

1,000 DIG CLUB: Candace Lee became just the fourth player in Husky history to enter the 1,000 dig club when she tallied 22 digs against USC on Sept. 24.

RECORDS WATCH: Sanja Tomasevic ranks sixth on the Washington all-time chart with 113 career aces ... she is just four aces away from the No. 5 spot ...Candace Lee ranks fourth on the UW career digs list with 1,013 ... Courtney Thompson ranks eighth on the Husky career list with 1,811 assists.

COACH MCLAUGHLIN: Jim McLaughlin begins his fourth year as head coach of the Washington volleyball team and has helped catapult it to a top five program and national championship contender. After inheriting a program that finished last in the Pac-10 standings in 2000, McLaughlin has taken the Huskies to the postseason in each of the last two seasons, leading UW to an Elite Eight appearance last year. UW's record has improved in each season under McLaughlin's direction and the Huskies have reintroduced themselves as one of the country's top volleyball programs.

A 14-year veteran head coach, McLaughlin has proven his ability to recruit talented student-athletes and cultivate championship programs. He has made 13 appearances in the NCAA postseason, including four with Kansas State, which advanced to the Sweet 16 in 2000. He also spent seven seasons as the men's head coach at USC, where he won a national championship in 1990 and finished as runner-up a year later.McLaughlin's record is 64-36 (.632) at UW and his 14 year coaching career boasts a record of 288-154 (.650) all-time.

WASHINGTON WINS NORTHWEST CLASSIC: Washington defeated Montana (3-0) and host Boise State (3-0) to win the Northwest Classic, Sept. 18. Sophomore setter Courtney Thompson was named tournament MVP with 78 assists (13.00 apg) in six games. Brie Hagerty, Christal Morrison and Sanja Tomasevic were also named to the all-tournament team. Hagerty averaged 3.17 kpg with a .326 hitting percentage, while Tomasevic averaged 4.80 kpg and 1.00 bpg with a .396 hitting percentage. Morrison contributed 2.50 kpg and 1.67 bpg.

HUSKIES WIN GREEN MILL CLASSIC: The Huskies picked up their second-straight tournament title on Sept. 11, sweeping Wichita State, Arkansas and Michigan State in straight sets to win the Green Mill Classic. Washington held advantages in every statistical category including hitting percentage (.314 to .096), kills (16.56 to 11.11 kpg) and digs (17.89 to 13.11 dpg). Junior libero Candace Lee earned MVP honors after averaging 5.56 dpg, including a 26 dig performance against Wichita State. Freshman Christal Morrison and senior Sanja Tomasevic were also named to the all-tournament team for their efforts. Morrison led the team in kills in all three match with a career-best 20 kills against Michigan State. Tomasevic averaged 3.22 kpg, 2.33 dpg and 1.00 bpg. UW also received solid play from Courtney Thompson (14.22 apg) and Brie Hagerty (4.00 kpg).

HUSKIES WIN NIU INVITATIONAL: Washington opened the season with a 3-0 record to win the NIU Comfort Inn & Suites Invitational last week. The Huskies defeated Butler, Wisconsin-Milwaukee and host Northern Illinois, all by a 3-0 score, to earn the tournament title. Washington held its opponents to 20 or less points in six of nine games and out-hit its opponents .384 to .083. Senior All-American Sanja Tomasevic and junior Brie Hagerty were named to the all-tournament team for their performances. Tomasevic led the squad with 5.67 kills per game, a .450 hitting percentage (51-6-100) and 6.38 points per game. She tallied double figure kills in all three matches and had a double-double against Butler in the season opener. Hagerty ranked second on the team with 3.67 kpg and 3.89 ppg, while hitting at a .483 clip (33-5-58). She hit .647 (12-1-17) in the opener and .500 vs. NIU (13-1-24), with just one error in each match. Other players with strong outings included libero Candace Lee (6.11 dpg), outside hitter Christal Morrison (3.38 kpg/1.00 bpg) and middle blocker Darla Myhre (2.44 kpg, 1.56 bpg).

ROSTER BREAKDOWN: The 14-player Washington roster includes 10 returning letterwinners and four returning starters. The 2004 team includes three seniors, six juniors, two sophomores and three freshmen. The team represents six states and three countries, including Washington (3), California (2), Hawaii (1), Oregon (2), Indiana (1), Nevada (1), Ohio (1), British Columbia (1) and Serbia & Montenegro (2).

HUSKIES PICKED TO FINISH THIRD IN PAC-10: Pac-10 head coaches predict that Washington will finish third in the Pacific-10 Conference. Southern California, the defending national champion, was picked to win its third-straight title with 89 points, while UCLA was picked to place second with 78 points. Washington picked up the third spot with 78 points and was followed by Stanford (71 points) and California (58 points) to round out the top five. The remaining Pac-10 teams were Arizona (55), Arizona State (38), Oregon State (36), while Oregon and Washington State (23) tied for the last slot.

2003 SEASON HIGHLIGHTS: Last season, the Huskies placed fifth in the Pac-10 (10-8) before peaking in the postseason and defeating Utah, Northwestern and Stanford in the NCAA tournament to advance to the quarterfinals. Washington lost a five-game heartbreaker to Minnesota in the Elite Eight match to tie for its best NCAA finish in the program's history. The Huskies' 23-9 record was the second-best ever at Washington.The Huskies received multiple honors and awards, highlighted with Sanja Tomasevic being named a second team All-American. Washington also had five athletes named to the Pac-10 All-Conference teams, including Tomasevic to the first team, Kara Bjorklund, Darla Myhre and Candace Lee to the honorable mention team and Courtney Thompson to the All-Freshman and honorable mention teams.

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