No. 4 UCLA Snaps Losing Streak With 3-1 Win At No. 5 USC
Oct. 20, 2006
LOS ANGELES - UCLA middle blocker Nana Meriwether had 19 kills and 10 blocks Friday as the No. 4 Bruins snapped an 11-match losing streak, dating back to the 2000 season, with a 3-1 victory (25-30, 30-20, 30-24, 30-22) over the No. 5 USC Women of Troy in the Lyon Center. Meriwether also hit .486 on the evening as the Bruins won three straight games after dropping game one.
USC junior Asia Kaczor (Wroclaw, Poland/College of Southern Idaho) led the Women of Troy with 23 kills while sophomore middle blocker Kelli Tennant (Temecula/Chaparral HS) hit .600 (8-2-10) with eight kills.
Katie Carter had 17 kills for UCLA while Ali Daley added 12 in the victory. The match featured two of the nation's top setters as USC freshman Taylor Carico (Manhattan Beach/Mira Costa HS) recorded 58 assists, seven digs and four block assists while UCLA sophomore Nellie Spicer had 56 assists, five kills, five digs and five block assists.
Down 7-6 in the first game, Jessica Gysin's kill started four straight points to take the 10-7 lead. UCLA called its first timeout of the game, down 14-9 and got it to 15-11 before the Women of Troy reeled off six straight points utilizing two block assists from Carico and Tennant and a solo block from junior Diane Copenhagen. Gysin's kill made it 24-14 before the Bruins got a mini 4-1 run, trailing 25-18. The Bruins cut it to four at 29-25 before the Women of Troy scored the game-winner.
It was all Bruins at the start of game two as the visitors powered their way to a 7-0 start. Meriwether used another kill to push UCLA out to a 15-7 advantage. Spicer's tip kill off the block forced USC's final timeout of the game with a 19-11 score in favor of UCLA. The Bruins kept the pressure up on kills from Meriwether and Carter and tied the match after hitting .500 (17-2-30) for game two.
Rachell Johnson served UCLA to a 4-0 start in the key third game. Tennant stuffed two straight Meriwether attempts and finished a block with Carico, followed by a Kaczor service ace as the Women of Troy tied the game at 7-7. Neither team pulled away as both battled to a 16-16 tie. UCLA used a 5-1 run to take a 21-17 lead as Meriwether and Carter later doubled on a block, leading 25-20. Meriwether closed it out as the Bruins took the 2-1 lead in the match.
Game four saw both teams battle as UCLA held the slim 11-8 margin. Colby Lyman's kill from the right side put the Bruins ahead, 15-12. Carter made it 20-18 with another kill, but the Women of Troy tied it again at 20-20 thanks to Copenhagen. At 22 apiece, Ali Daley recorded her second straight point-winner for the Bruins and a USC attack error gave UCLA the 24-22 lead. UCLA finished the game with eight straight points as Spicer and Rachell Johnson combined on two blocks.
USC travels to Washington and Washington State next weekend for two Pac-10 Conference matches. The Women of Troy will face the defending national champion Huskies on Thursday (Oct. 26) and the Cougars on Friday (Oct. 27) with both matches starting at 7 p.m.
UCLA 25-30-30-30USC 30-20-24-22
Records: UCLA (21-1, 8-1), USC (18-2, 7-2)Kills: Asia Kaczor 23 (USC); Nana Meriwether 19 (UCLA)
Team: UCLA USC1 .174 .3082 .500 .2563 .245 .2004 .324 .105Totals .290 .218
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