Stanford Blasts Cal In Berkeley To Edge Closer To Pac-10 Title
Nov. 14, 2008
Berkeley, Calif. - The No. 2 Stanford women's volleyball team got some revenge tonight, sweeping No. 7 California in Berkeley to avenge its only conference loss. In the much-anticipated rematch, Stanford dominated with a 25-23, 25-16, 25-20 sweep.
Stanford improves to 22-3 overall, with a league-leading 13-1 mark in conference play. The Cardinal is now two wins away from clinching at least a share of its third consecutive Pac-10 Championship. Cal drops to third place in the conference with a 10-4 Pac-10 record and a 20-5 mark overall.
Stanford was led by its three All-American hitters, who each reached double-figures for he first time since ... Cynthia Barboza led the trio, picking up a team-best 13 kills and 18 digs for her 11th double-double. Akinradewo hit .611, coming in over .600 for the fourth time in the last five matches, and tallied 12 kills and six blocks. Klineman had 11 kills on the night, while fellow sophomore Cassidy Lichtman served up 38 assists.
With her 12 kills, Akinradewo passed former Stanford Kerri Walsh for ninth place on the school's all-time kill list. She now has 1,556 kills for her career.
Cal was led by Mindi Wiley's 10 kills and .533 hitting. The Cardinal held All-American Hana Cutura, who had 23 kills last time around, to just nine kills and .057 hitting.
Akinradewo quickly set the Cardinal on the right track to start the first set. The senior middle blocker put up a block with Alex Fisher on the opening play, then pounded consecutive kills to help the Cardinal take a 4-1 lead. Barboza then picked up where Akinradewo left off, firing off three kills in a 4-1 run that made it 8-3, and two more to force a Cal timeout at 13-7. At 17-10, Cutura helped the Bears take three points in a row and squeeze the lead to just four, 17-13 but Stanford took a timeout and turned things around. Akinradewo started a 6-1 run with her fourth kill, then went back and served four straight points. After one Golden Bear point, Barboza and Fisher put down consecutive kills to give the Cardinal a commanding 23-14 lead. The Cardinal took set point on Barboza's seventh kill at 24-16, but struggled to finish. Cutura stepped back and served seven consecutive points to close the gap to 24-23, but, on Stanford's last set point opportunity, Lichtman found Janet Okogbaa for the winning kill, 25-23. Stanford outhit Cal .300 to .184 in the first set.
Klineman provided the Cardinal fire to begin the second set, slamming four kills in a 5-2 opening run. Barboza stepped up a few plays later, adding a kill and a block to her totals to give Stanford a 9-4 lead. The teams then made nearly an even swap until the media timeout, with a Golden Bear attacking error giving Stanford a 15-10 margin at the break. Barboza came up with another stuff on the next play, and Klineman connected from the back row to give Stanford a 17-10 advantage. Cal chiseled the lead down to four at 20-16, but this time, with Akinradewo came to the front row and helped Stanford surge to the finish. The senior tallied a kill and a block to begin a 5-0 run, and Erin Waller served five consecutive points to the finish, including the winning ace at 25-16. Klineman led the Cardinal with six kills, and Stanford outhit Cal .387 to .125.
Akinradewo and the Cardinal ran off with six of the first seven points of the third set, with he senior picking up two kills and a block. Lichtman served her team-leading 19th ace of the year as part of a string of five consecutive Stanford points, and Waller and Okogbaa put up a block to make it 13-4. With Cutura serving once again, Cal began a vicious comeback, using a 12-4 run to fight back within one. Two kills by Morgan Beck created a 4-0 spurt to begin the run, and a combination of Bear blocks and kills by Wiley pulled Cal back to 17-15. A Cutura swing eventually made it 18-17. Stanford dug in, however, and nabbed its three-point lead back on a Waller-Okogbaa block at 21-18. Klineman and Akinradewo drilled back-to-back kills to nab set point, and Stanford watched a Cal swing sail deep to finish its first chance. The Cardinal hit .286 to Cal's .188 in the last set and was led by Akinradewo's five kills.
The Cardinal returns to Maples on Friday to begin its final regular-season home weekend. Stanford meets No. 10 USC on Friday and No. 9 UCLA on Saturday, with both matches slated for 7 p.m. starts. Saturday's match will mark the last home regular-season contest for Barboza, Akinradewo, Waller, Fisher and Jessica Fishburn.
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