Third-Ranked Volleyball Stays Undefeated With Four-Game Win Over Washington State
Sept. 29, 2006
LOS ANGELES - Katie Carter had a team-high 16 kills while Nana Meriwether had 15 kills and hit .519 as third-ranked UCLA completed a perfect home-opening weekend with a 30-17, 24-30, 30-21, 30-26 win over Washington State on Friday night at Pauley Pavilion.
UCLA improves to 17-0, 4-0 Pac-10, while WSU falls to 12-6, 0-4 Pac-10. The 4-0 start to conference play is UCLA's best since opening 4-0 with wins over the Washington schools at home and the Bay Area schools on the road in 2000.
Game one was tied at 11-11 before UCLA took control with six-straight points off the serve of Colby Lyman, using three Becky Mehring kills plus putaways by Rachell Johnson and Nellie Spicer en route to a 17-11 lead. The UCLA lead hit double-digits at 23-13 on an ace by Johnson and a Lyman kill ended game one at 30-17.
UCLA seemed in control of game two, leading by as many as five points at 16-11 thanks to a Meriwether kill. The Bruin lead was three points at 20-17 before WSU rattled off 11-consecutive points, taking advantage of eight UCLA hitting errors during that span as the visiting Cougars took a 28-20 lead. WSU eventually won game two, 30-24, to send the teams into halftime tied at a game apiece.
Game three was close early, tied at 13-13 when a Carter kill gave UCLA the lead for good at 14-13. The Bruin margin was thin for a while, however, as WSU stayed within 2-4 points until UCLA got back-to-back kills from Meghan Schoen and Lyman to take a 25-20 advantage. UCLA eventually went on a 7-1 run to end game three as the Bruins took a 2-1 lead in the match with a 30-21 win.
Game four went back-and-forth. The Bruins used three Ali Daley kills to jump out to a quick 5-1 lead, but WSU used a 6-0 run of their own as the Cougars took a 13-11 lead midway through the game. UCLA responded with a 6-1 run to reclaim the advantage at 17-14 on a kill by Meriwether. It proved to be a lead the Bruins never relinquished, although WSU never gave up, trimming the margin to just one point at 26-25. However, Carter helped put an end to the evening with three kills over the next five rallies as UCLA took game four, 30-26.
Carter and Meriwether paced UCLA with 18.5 points apiece. Carter notched 16 kills and four blocks while Meriwether used 15 kills and seven block assists. Daley added 11.5 points with 11 kills and a block. Nellie Spicer notched a double-double for the Bruins with 61 assists and a match-high 13 digs while Lyman also tied for match-high honors with 13 digs. As a team, UCLA nearly doubled-up WSU in hitting as the Bruins posted a .256 percentage on the night compared to WSU's .135. The Cougars' Brittany Johnson led all players with 17 kills.
The Bruins hit the road next weekend to face Arizona (Fri., Oct. 6) and Arizona State (Sat., Oct. 7). UCLA returns home on October 12-13 when California and Stanford visit Pauley Pavilion.