Oregon Volleyball Sweeps Oregon State For First Pac-10 Win

Oct. 24, 2000

The University of Oregon volleyball team swept Oregon State, 15-10, 15-13, 15-3, before 1,387 rowdy fans at Gill Coliseum in Corvallis Friday night. The win snaps a six match losing streak for the Ducks, who improve to 8-10, 1-9 Pac-10. Oregon State is 14-7, 5-5.

'Our confidence was taken away from us in the first half of the Pac-10,' Oregon head coach Carl Ferreira said. 'But I've been saying all along that I didn't think we were far from what we wanted to do.'

The Ducks were led by junior Monique Tobbagi, who had a match high 17 kills and nine digs. Tobbagi committed just three errors in the match to post a .368 attack percentage. Senior Halie Mazza added eight kills, eight digs and four blocks. Defensively Oregon was led by senior Amy Banducci and sophomore Kristin Ferris, who had 16 and 11 kills, respectively.

'We were much more focused coming into this game,' Tobbagi said. 'We played together as a team and this win definitely builds confidence heading into the second half of the Pac-10.'

Oregon, which leads the Pac-10 in service aces per game (1.78 sapg), had eight aces in the match, including two straight by setter Sydney Chute at the end of Game 1 which gave Oregon the win, 15-10. Chute had three aces, 24 assists and six digs on the night. Tobbagi added two aces and Ferris, Mazza and Lindsay Murphy each had one ace.

Another strong point for Oregon early in the season was its 4-2 Flex offense. Against the Beavers, the Ducks re-established that offense and Oregon State had trouble defending the two setter attack. Oregon setter Julie Gerlach had six kills and hit .385, while Chute tallied four kills. The two combined for 33 of Oregon's 130 total attacks.

'Our biggest obstacle coming into the second half of the season was deciding which path we were going to take,' Gerlach said. 'We could either have a pity party or take what we've learned from the first half and build on that.'

In Game 1, the Ducks took a 4-1 lead behind strong blocking by Mazza, Banducci, Gerlach and freshman Alisha Stevens. The Beavers used a 4-0 run to go ahead 5-4 and eventually went up 9-6 on kills by Angie Shirley and Gina Schmidt. But a kill each by Mazza and Tobbagi as well as a service ace by Ferris tied the game at nine and Oregon finished the game with a 10-1 run to win.

Game 2 was tied nine times, the final at 12. Oregon ended the suspense with a kill by Banducci that gave the Ducks 13-12 lead. Kills by Tobbagi and Chute gave Oregon the win and momentum down the stretch.

'I thought Game 2 was critical,' Ferreira said. 'It didn't allow them to gain momentum heading into the locker room. Before Game 3 we reiterated what we had learned since the last time we played them and were ahead 2-0.'

Oregon's momentum heading into Game 3 was apparent as it took a 10-2 lead. The Beavers were unable to narrow the gap and scored only once more on an Oregon error. Behind strong serving by Tobbagi, the Ducks went ahead 13-3 and eventually won 15-3 after an ace by Murphy and a long attack by Oregon State.

The Ducks hit .254 in the match, including a .405 hitting percentage in Game 3. Oregon outblocked the Beavers, 10-6 and outdug them 61-58.

'Having the rivalry game be the first game of the second half of conference play is great,' Ferreira said. 'It allowed us to gain emotion and build momentum heading into the rest of the season.'

Oregon takes a break from conference play when it hosts UC Riverside Sunday at McArthur Court. Game time is 1 p.m.

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