Cal State Fullerton Stuns Seventh-Ranked UCLA in Five

Sept. 18, 2009

FULLERTON, Calif. - Cal State Fullerton, which had won only two sets in its previous 28 matches against UCLA, stunned the seventh-ranked Bruins in five on Friday night at Titan Gym. Set scores were 25-23, 15-25, 25-20, 18-25, 16-14. Sophomore Amanda Gil led the Bruins with 11 kills and nine blocks.

The Bruins see their seven-match winning streak snapped and fall to 9-2 on the season, while the Titans improve to 8-3.

Freshman Lauren Cook posted her fifth straight double-double with 44 assists and 13 digs. Senior Kaitlin Sather had seven kills and eight digs, while sophomore Lainey Gera added 17 digs. The Bruins hit .252 for the match.

The first set featured 10 ties and a pair of lead changes, with Cal State Fullerton taking the opener 25-23. Trailing 12-9, the Bruins scored three in a row to tie the set for the first time. Junior Dicey McGraw had a kill, which was followed by a triple block by Sather, McGraw and sophomore Sara Sage and a Fullerton attack error. UCLA tied the set again at 13 and 14 before another Titan attack error gave the Bruins their first lead at 15-14.

The score was evened at 15, 16, 17 and 18 before two in a row by the Titans made it 20-18 and forced the Bruins into a timeout. UCLA came out of the break with back-to-back kills by Gil and Sather to knot the set at 20. After two more ties at 21 and 22, Fullerton netted the next two to earn set point at 24-22. UCLA saved the first set point on a kill by Sage, but the Titans won the opener on a kill by Erin Saddler. Sather had five kills in the first, while Sage added three. Fullerton out-hit UCLA .286 to .212 in the first.

The Titans held a brief edge at the start of the second, but the Bruins took their first lead at 8-6 and didn't trail for the rest of the set. Leading 10-9, UCLA scored three straight and eight of the next nine to take an 18-10 advantage. After a Fullerton service error, freshman Bojana Todorovic recorded consecutive kills to make it 13-9. Following a Titan sideout, the home team served another error and a Cook ace on the other end made it 15-10. The Bruins closed out the run with a Fullerton error and a pair of combo blocks by Gil and Sather and Gil and freshman Rachael Kidder.

The Bruins' lead never dipped below seven the rest of the way. At 22-15, UCLA scored the last three on kills by Sather, Sage and Kidder to win the second 25-15. McGraw had three kills in the second, while Sather had two kills and three blocks. The Bruins hit much better in the second, posting 11 kills and only one error in 28 attempts for a .357 hitting percentage. The Titans swung at a .128 clip.

Cal State Fullerton scored the first two points of the third, but UCLA rallied with seven of the next eight to take a 7-3 advantage. Cook opened the run with back-to-back kills, and after a Titan sideout, the Bruins received a kill from Gil and two in a row from Todorovic to make it 5-3. UCLA closed out the run with a pair of combo blocks by Gil and Todorovic and a solo roof by Gil. The Bruins still led by four at 12-8, but the Titans scored seven straight to go ahead 15-12.

The Bruins netted four of the next five to even things at 16, but the Titans scored five of the next six to take a 21-17 advantage. UCLA was unable to close the gap and a Bruin attack error on Fullerton's second set point gave the home team a 25-20 victory. Gil and Todorovic each had three kills in the third, with the Titans out-hitting the Bruins .268 to .214.

The Titans tallied three of the first four points of the fourth set, but the Bruins came back with three in a row on two Fullerton errors and a Gil/McGraw block to go up 4-3. Although the set would be tied four more times, UCLA never lost its lead. Tied at eight, the Bruins scored four straight and six of seven to take a 14-9 advantage. Sophomore Katie Camp and Todorovic each had kills to start the run, which was followed by a Gil/Cook combo roof and a Gil kill to make it 12-8. After a Fullerton sideout, Gil added another kill and a Titan attack error made it a five-point UCLA lead.

Fullerton got no closer than two the rest of the way. Leading 20-17, the Bruins closed out the set with five of the last six to win it 25-18. After a Titan service error, UCLA received a combo block by Gil and Cook and a solo roof by Gil to make it 23-17. One Fullerton sideout later, kills by Gil and Kidder forced the match to a fifth set. The Bruins out-hit the Titans .296 to .053. Kidder had four kills in the fourth, while Gil had three kills and four blocks.

Cal State Fullerton took an early 2-0 lead in the deciding set, but a 7-1 UCLA run put the visitors up 7-3. Todorovic had a pair of aces, Gil produced two kills and Fullerton had three errors during the run. The Titans battled back to take a 12-10 lead, but three straight by the Bruins on a kill by Camp and two Fullerton attack errors gave UCLA a 13-12 advantage.

After a Fullerton sideout, a Sather kill gave the Bruins match point at 14-13. A Saddler spike for the Titans evened things at 14 and following a Bruin attack error, Fullerton had its first match point, winning it on a kill by Jonny Hart. Gil had two kills in the fifth, as the Bruins were out-hit .318 to .176.

Saddler led the Titans with 20 kills, Torrie Brown had 17 and Kayla Neto posted 14. Cal State Fullerton hit .200 as a team.

The Bruins play twice on Saturday, facing Fordham at 1:30 p.m. and Long Beach State at 5 p.m. Free audio of the UCLA-Long Beach State tilt will be available on the schedule page of

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