Clean Sweep: Stanford Takes Diet Coke Classic Title with 3-0 Win Over No. 23 Ohio
Sept. 2, 2007
Minneapolis, Minn. - The Stanford women's volleyball completed a clean sweep of field at the 2007 Diet Coke Classic today, defeating Ohio, its third ranked opponent less than 72 hours, 30-15, 30-25, 30-23. Freshman Alix Klineman led the Cardinal for the third day in a row, with 15 kills and eight digs, while Foluke Akinradewo put up 13 kills on 17 attempts (.706). Stanford heads home with a 4-0 record on the year, while Ohio was handed its first loss of the season and drops to 4-1.
Junior outside hitter Cynthia Barboza, who finished the tournament with 32 kills, was named the weekend's MVP while Klineman and Akinradewo also earned places on the All-Tournament team. Setter Bryn Kehoe had 37 assists in the win and freshman Gabi Ailes chipped in three aces and led Stanford for the second straight match with 15 digs. Ohio was led by the 10 kills of sophomore Ellen Herman. Stanford hit .266 to Ohio's .033 for the match.
Stanford established dominance from the get-go, taking four of the first five points before running away with five straight to go up 9-3. The lead only increased from there, as Stanford held the Bobcats to just eight more kills in the game. Junior Erin Waller pounded down a ball from the right side at 14-8, and started a 6-1 Stanford run that ended with Klineman's fourth kill of the game and the Cardinal's first double-digit lead, 19-9. By 24-11, the Cardinal seemed to have the game out of reach, and at 29-14 another Waller kill gave Stanford game point. Redshirt sophomore Alex Fisher ripped a ball cross-court to finish game one, 30-15. Stanford hit .375 in the game, and limited the Bobcats to a -.067 mark.
Game two began with a Klineman ace, but this time Stanford had trouble pulling away. Ohio took a one point lead at times, but Klineman kept Stanford in the game with three early kills. A service ace by Ailes gave Stanford the lead back at 8-7, and from there the teams went back-and-forth for 14 consecutive points. Akinradewo tallied three kills for Stanford in the exchange and finally gave the Cardinal a two point lead on her fourth kill of the game at 17-15. A solo block by Kehoe increased the lead to three at 21-18, and Waller and senior middle blocker Franci Girard produced back-to-back kills to extend the lead to four. Klineman kept a steady stream of kills coming to push Stanford closer to the finish, increasing her total to 13 with three late in the game. The Cardinal sealed the win by taking four of the last five points, and Girard came around on a slide and ripped a ball through the Ohio block to end the game, 30-25.
Stanford came back from the locker room anxious to finish the deal. Akinradewo and Klineman started game three with back-to-back kills and the Cardinal took nine of the first 12 points to jump out to an early 9-3 advantage. Akinradewo drilled three consecutive kills from the middle to run the score out to 14-5, and a Bobcat timeout only resulted in the Cardinal taking its first double-digit lead at 16-6. Ohio cut the lead in half at 17-12, but Fisher stopped any thoughts of a comeback with a kill from the back row. Stanford went on to take the next three points and held a solid lead for the rest of the match. Akinradewo kills started and finished a 5-1 Stanford run that gave the squad game point, and a block by Cassidy Lichtman ended the game, 30-23.
Stanford now heads home to host the Stanford Invitational, Thursday through Saturday, at Maples Pavilion. In addition to the Cardinal, the six-game tournament features Saint Mary's, No. 18 Cal Poly and No. 15 BYU. Action begins at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, with a match between Cal Poly and BYU, and follows with Stanford's 7 p.m. home-opener against Saint Mary's. Single-game and season tickets are available at www.GoStanford.com or by calling 1-800-STANFORD.