Volleyball Matches With Gonzaga, Washington State Postponed

Sept. 12, 2001


Last Week:
9/4 at Denver W, 3-2
Air Force Invite (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
9/7 vs. Illinois-Chicago W, 3-0
9/7 vs. SE Louisiana W, 3-0
9/8 at Air Force W, 3-0

This Week:
9/12 at Gonzaga Postponed
9/14 at Washington St.* Postponed

9/20 California* 7:00 PM
9/21 #4 Stanford* 7:00 PM
9/24 Idaho 7:00 PM

UW-Gonzaga, WSU Postponed: The Washington volleyball matches with Gonzaga, scheduled for Wednesday, Sept., 12, in Spokane, Wash., and Washington State, originally set for Friday, Sept. 14, in Pullman, Wash., have been postponed. It is not known yet when or if the matches will be rescheduled.

'Until we know the implications of what is going on, we have decided that it's best to stay in Seattle, stay together and be with our families,' said UW head volleyball coach Jim McLaughlin.

The Huskies had originally been scheduled to fly to Spokane from Seattle Tuesday afternoon, and then were to continue on to Pullman, Wash., for the team's Pac-10 Conference opener at Washington State on Friday.

No Pac-10 Matches: The Pacific-10 Conference has voted that conference competition in all sports will not be conducted through the weekend in sympathy to the national tragedy that occurred Tuesday. Participation in non-conference competition in each sport will be left to the discretion of each institution.

Clean Sweep: Coming off a 4-0 week, the Huskies, at 5-2 overall, are off to their best start since 1997. Washington defeated Denver in five games Tuesday before sweeping Illinois-Chicago, SE Louisiana and Air Force each in three games en route to the Air Force Invitational title. The UW dominated the tournament field in Colorado Springs, Colo., outblocking its opponents 36-9 and outhitting them .374 to .063.

All-Tourney Again: UW senior Allison Richardson (Hemet, Calif.), junior Gretchen Maurer (San Clemente, Calif.) and senior Lisa Underhill (Vista, Calif.) each were named to the Air Force Invitational all-tournament team. It is the second such honor for both Richardson and Maurer in as many weeks.

Maurer, the tournament MVP, set the Huskies to an unbelievable .436 hitting percentage, averaging 13.89 assists per game and 1.07 blocks per game. Richardson, who missed the team's opening match with Illinois-Chicago, rebounded to lead the UW in kills with 18 versus SE Louisiana and 16 against Air Force. Underhill, meanwhile, had 26 kills on 44 attempts (.545 hitting) and 24 blocks (2.67/g) in the three matches.

Air Force Invitational All-Tournament Team
Gretchen Maurer (UW) - MVP
Allison Richardson (UW)
Lisa Underhill (UW)
Vicki Lublow (UIC)
Gina Cavena (UIC)
Mandy Withrow (SELU)
Delavane Diaz (AFA)

In the Record Books: Just seven matches into the 2001 season, a number of Washington volleyball players are already making their way up the school's all-time career top 10 list.

Senior Lisa Underhill has led the way, ranking in the top 10 in four categories, including kills, hitting percentage, block assists and total blocks. Underhill entered the career kill rankings at the 10th position last weekend, totaling 892 kills, while she moved up from fifth to third in block assists (300) and from sixth to fourth in total blocks (339).

Junior setter Gretchen Maurer joined teammate Britni Churnside (Eugene, Ore.) in the career assists top 10 with 865 to rank ninth overall. Churnside remained sixth in assists at 1,893 and junior captain Paige Benjamin (Redmond, Wash.) still has the fourth-best career hitting percentage of .271.

The First Time: Two Washington volleyball players made their debuts last weekend. Red-shirt freshmen Alexis McDonald (Long Beach, Calif.) and Diane Halvarson (Kirkland, Wash.) each played in one game apiece at the Air Force Invitational.

McDonald made good on her first career hitting attempt, recording a kill in the team's win over Illinois-Chicago. Halvarson also had one hitting attempt versus Air Force.

A Trio Of Matches: After the postponement of this week's matches, the Huskies play host to two Pac-10 matches versus California (Sept. 20) and fourth-ranked Stanford (Sept. 21), followed by a non-conference match versus Idaho (Sept. 24) next week. The UW will look to rebound from its 0-5 combined record against the three schools in 2000.

Scouting California: California, under head coach Rich Feller, opened its 2001 campaign with a 3-2 overall record with wins over New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Florida Atlantic.

Sophomore outside hitter Gabrielle Abernathy has led the Golden Bears with 4.22 kills per game, followed by teammates Reena Pardiwala and Leah Young, who both average 3.06 kills per game. Setter Candace McNamee runs the Cal offense with 13.17 assists per game, while middle blocker Camille Leffall already has 22 total blocks in 18 games played.

The Huskies, who own an 18-17 lead in the all-time series, will look to end a four-match losing streak to California.

Scouting Stanford: The fourth-ranked Stanford Cardinal enters this weekend with a perfect 6-0 record, including wins over four ranked opponents. The Cardinal, under first-year head coach John Dunning, has victories over sixth-ranked Penn State and 25th-ranked Texas, which defeated the Huskies earlier this season in four games.

The Cardinal is led by 2000 Olympian Logan Tom, who has averages 4.55 kills per game to go with 3.30 digs per game and 1.10 block per game. Freshman Ogonna Nhamani is first on the team in hitting percentage with a .383 mark and ranks second in kills per game (3.90). Setters Robyn Lewis (13.36 a/g) and Anna Robinson (10.88 a/g) have shared the team's setting duties, while Tara Conrad has been a force at the net with 1.79 blocks per game.

Stanford has won 32 of the team's 34 meetings with the last UW victory coming in 1997. The Huskies took the Cardinal to the limit in 2000, falling 11-15 in the fifth game in Seattle.

Connections, Connections: Next Friday's match with the Cardinal will be the third meeting between UW sophomore defensive specialist Libba Lawrence (West Linn, Ore.) and her sister, Stanford senior defensive specialist Emily Lawrence ... former Sierra Nevada Volleyball Club teammates, Washington's Kaitlin Leck (Carson City, Nev.) and Jennifer Hucka face for the first time ... UW freshman Vanessa Gilliam (Fairfield, Calif.) will get a chance to see her former club coach, Cal assistant Lee Maes, who also coached her on the 1998 USA Volleyball Youth National Team.

Scouting Idaho: The Vandals, who travel to Seattle for the first time since 1997, defeated the Huskies in four games last season. This year, Idaho is an even 3-3 with matches against Gonzaga (Sept. 18) and Utah State (Sept. 22) still left to play prior to the two schools' Monday night meeting.

Under head coach Debbie Buchanan, the Vandals' Anna-Marie Hammond and Laura McCaffrey both average a little over three kills per game. Hammond also is first in blocks per game with a 1.55 mark, while setter Jenny Neville runs the team's offense with 11.11 assists per game.

Washington has won 13 of the two schools' 17 meetings.

See Us On TV: If you're looking to see a Husky home match without leaving your home, Fox Sports and the Pac-10 have made it all possible. Washington's match with Arizona on Friday, Nov. 9, in Seattle will be televised by Fox Sports Net (national) on a tape-delay basis. The team's Nov. 16 meeting with Washington State also will be televised by Fox Sports Northwest and can be chosen as the 'wildcard' selection for Fox Sports Net.

Fox Sports Net will televise eight other Pac-10 women's volleyball matches in 2001, all of which are scheduled to air on Saturday mornings at 10 a.m. from Sept. 22-Nov. 17.

A New Coach: Jim McLaughlin, head coach at Kansas State University for the past four seasons, was named head women's volleyball coach at the University of Washington on August 1, 2001. McLaughlin, who became the seventh head coach in school history, replaces former head coach Bill Neville, who announced his retirement on July 17, after 10 years at Washington.

McLaughlin spent the last four seasons building the Kansas State women's volleyball program into a national power, compiling an 82-43 record and taking the Wildcats to four consecutive NCAA tournament appearances. Last season, McLaughlin led Kansas State to a 22-9 record, a program-best No. 16 national ranking and its first-ever trip to the NCAA Sweet 16.

Prior to a one-year stint as an assistant at Notre Dame in 1996, McLaughlin was the men's head coach at the University of Southern California for seven seasons, leading the Trojans to the NCAA title in 1990 (his first season as head coach) and a runner-up finish a year later.

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