Golden Bears Announce 2010 Volleyball Schedule
May 3, 2010
BERKELEY - California volleyball head coach Rich Feller announced the 2010 schedule on Monday, May 3. The Golden Bears will take aim at a ninth-consecutive berth in the NCAA tournament in the fall, following on the heels of three straight appearances in regional finals. Cal opens the season as host of the Cal Molten Classic when the Bears welcome UC Santa Barbara and Manhattan College to Haas Pavilion, Aug. 27-28. The Gauchos are just one of nine teams on Cal's 2010 schedule that made the NCAA tournament.
The team heads to Southern California for the USD Tournament on Labor Day weekend (Sept. 3-4) to take on Auburn and host-school San Diego at the Jenny Craig Pavilion. Then Fresno State, Seton Hall and UC Davis will take the court at Haas Pavilion as Cal returns home for a four-team tournament as host of the Hilton Garden Inn Classic (Sept. 10-11).
In a reprise of 2009's Bay Area battles, the Bears head across the bridge for a match against San Francisco on Sept. 17, and traverse the mountains to face Saint Mary's College on Sept. 18, as a part of the Pac-10/West Coast Conference Challenge. Stanford will also face each school on opposite nights.
For the first time since 2006, Cal will open the conference season on the road with matches in Arizona (Sept. 24 and 26). The Bears will face their first Pac-10 opponent at home when Oregon visits Berkeley on Friday, Oct. 1.
Cal and Stanford will tangle up in the first of two Big Spike matches on Friday, Oct. 22, at Maples Pavilion in Stanford, Calif. Last season, the teams split matches with the home team prevailing in five-set thrillers each time. The Bears and the Cardinal were the only two teams from the Pac-10 to advance at least as far as the NCAA regional semifinal in 2009 with Cal taking it one step further to the regional final.
After three matches on the road through the belly of league play, the Bears return home to close the season with five out of seven at home. USC and UCLA visit first to open up the festivities on Friday, Nov. 5, and Saturday, Nov. 6. Cal completes its regular-season road schedule with a pair of matches in Washington (Nov. 12-13) before returning home to take on Stanford once more on Friday, Nov. 19.
The Bears will celebrate Thanksgiving at home this year as the Arizona schools come to town. The regular season concludes with Senior Day on Friday, Nov. 26, at Haas Pavilion as Cal hosts Arizona in a 1 p.m. PT bout.
The Bears' 2010 roster will feature two-time All-American setter Carli Lloyd; flanked by outside hitter Tarah Murrey. Defensive specialist Meagan Schmitt is the third of three upperclassmen on the roster. From there, the squad boasts youth with six sophomores and two incoming freshmen. In the middle, the Bears will have Shannon Hawari, Kat Brown, Correy Johnson and Tia Gaffen; with Elly Barrett at setter and Robin Rostratter at defensive specialist. After spending the spring as the first early-enrollee in Cal history, outside hitter Lauren Loerch will be joined by Adrienne Gehan in the fall.
The Bears (21-11, 11-7 Pac-10) finished fourth in the Pac-10 and received the No. 8 ranking in the final 2009 AVCA poll. Cal earned its school-record eighth consecutive bid to the NCAA championship tournament, and as the ninth-seeded team, advanced to the Gainesville Regional final where it fell to three-time defending NCAA champion Penn State. The Bears moved into the NCAA regional final for the third time in three years; making them just one of four teams to accomplish the feat, joining Nebraska, Texas and Penn State. Cal's fourth straight appearance in the regional semifinal was also a new school record. Senior outside hitter Hana Cutura was named Pac-10 Player of the Year and received her third selection to the AVCA All-America team where she was joined by Lloyd in her second appearance.