This Week in Pac-10 Volleyball

Dec. 10, 2007

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Dec. 13 at Sacramento, Calif. - NCAA Semifinals
No. 1 STANFORD (31-2) vs. No. 5 USC (29-4), 6 p.m.
No. 3 Penn State (32-2) vs. No. 10 CALIFORNIA (26-7), 8 p.m.

Dec. 15 at Sacramento, Calif. - NCAA Final
Stanford/USC winner vs. Penn State/California winner, 6 p.m.

ESPN2/ESPNU will televise the Stanford/USC semifinal match, while only ESPNU will air the Penn State/California semifinal match. Saturday's championship match will be televised by ESPN2.

Times listed are local to site


The Pac-10 will provide three-fourths of the NCAA Final Four field. It's the third time in the last four years that the Pac-10 has had three teams reach the Final Four. While STANFORD and USC have combined for 25 appearances in the Final Four, this will be the first appearance by CALIFORNIA... The Pac-10 is 18-3 (.857) in NCAA Tournament play, with two of those losses coming at the hands of another Pac-10 opponent. The Pac-10 was a perfect 6-0 during NCAA First Round action, then went 5-1 in the Second Round as Stanford, USC, UCLA, California, and OREGON advanced to the NCAA Sweet Sixteen... Six Pac-10 teams are ranked among the CSTV/AVCA Top 10 - No. 4 Stanford, No. 5 USC, No. 6 California, No. 8 UCLA, No. 9 Oregon, and No. 10 WASHINGTON.


The Pac-10 has won five of the last six NCAA titles. Washington won it all in 2005, Stanford claimed titles in 2001 and 2004, while USC captured titles in 2002 and 2003. Over the last seven years of the NCAA Tournament, the Pac-10 has compiled an impressive 122-37 (.767) record. Toss out the 11 postseason matches in which Pac-10 teams faced each other and the league's NCAA Tournament record against non-conference foes stands at 111-26 (.810) over the last seven years ... Overall, the Pac-10 has won 13 NCAA titles - that's half of the 26 titles presented by the NCAA. The league's overall record against non-conference opponents in NCAA Tournament play is 237-90 (.725) ... Over the last six years, the Pac-10 is 37-2 (.949) in the first round, and 89-11 (.890) in opening round matches since 1990. For the eighth consecutive year, the Pac-10 had at least six teams participate in the NCAA Tournament... The Pac-10 has had a team in the Final Four in 25 of 27 years of the NCAA Tournament. Two or more Pac-10 teams reached the Final Four 12 times, with three or more teams advancing to the NCAA semifinals four times (1985, 2004, 2006, 2007).

CALIFORNIA (26-7, 12-6 Pac-10/4th) - The Golden Bears are making their 11th NCAA Tournament appearance, and their first ever trip to the Final Four. California knocked off Liberty, Duke, Iowa State and last year's NCAA Champion Nebraska to reach Sacramento. Senior OH Angie Pressey, a four-time All-Pac-10 performer, stands third on Cal's career list with 1,710 kills. Senior MB Ellen Orchard owns Cal's career record with 503 total blocks. The Bears lead the Pac-10 in blocks (3.75 bpg). Freshman S Carli Lloyd is second on the school's single-season list with 1,515 assists. She needs 41 assists to move into the top spot. The Bears' 26 victories are second most in a season in school history, trailing only the 28 wins posted by the 1982 team. The 12 Pac-10 wins equal a school record in Pac-10 play. Coach Rich Feller has guided the Bears to four 20-win seasons in the last six years. Sophomore OH Hana Cutura was named MVP of the Madison Regional after collecting 39 kills (6.50 kpg) and hitting .350 for the two matches. Lloyd and Pressey joined Cutura on the All-Region team. The Bears have won 16 of their last 19, with the three losses coming at No. 6 USC, at No. 4 Washington, and at No. 4 Stanford.

STANFORD (31-2, 16-2 Pac-10/1st) - The Cardinal are making their 27th NCAA Tournament appearance, and are one of two teams (also Penn State) to have appeared in each NCAA Tournament. Stanford is making its 17th trip to the Final Four and has won six NCAA titles (1992, 1994, 1996, 1997, 2001, 2004). The Cardinal captured their 11th Pac-10 title and have finished lower than second in Pac-10 play just once in 22 seasons of league play (4th in 2000). Stanford's path to the Final Four included victories over Santa Clara, Sacramento State, Cal Poly and UCLA. Senior S Bryn Kehoe is the seventh player in Pac-10 history to record 5,000 or more assists. Her school-record 5,824 assists currently ranks third on the Pac-10's all-time list. Junior MB Foluke Akinradewo is hitting an amazing .502 for the season and looks to eclipse the Pac-10 single-season record of .448 hit last season by UCLA's Nana Meriwether. In four postseason matches, she's hitting .563 (60 kills, six errors, 96 attempts). Her performance last weekend earned her MVP honors of the Stanford Regional as she had 33 kills in 56 attempts with just two errors (.554). Also collecting All-Region honors were Kehoe, freshman OH Alix Klineman and junior OH Erin Waller.

USC (29-4, 14-4 Pac-10/3rd) - The Women of Troy are making their 25th NCAA Tournament appearance, and eighth visit to the Final Four. USC has won three NCAA titles (1981, 2002, 2003). USC's route to the Final Four included wins over Pepperdine, Long Beach State, St. John's and Texas. It's five-game victory over St. John's pushed USC's record in five-game matches this season to 8-0. Senior OH Asia Kaczor set Pac-10 single-match records with 44 kills and 100 attempts vs. Washington (Nov. 16). With a single-season school record 629 kills, she's the only USC player to ever record 500 or more kills in a season twice (563 in 2006). Kaczor was named MVP of the Gainesville Regional after posting 42 kills, while hitting .323 in the process. Senior OH Diane Copenhagen and junior OH Jessica Gysin were also named to the All-Region team. Sophomore S Taylor Carico is the first USC setter to record over 1,500 assists in a season and now has 1,540. USC has won its last nine, and 15 of its last 17 matches.

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