Bruins Host Long Beach State on Friday in First Round of NCAA Tournament

Dec. 1, 2009

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Friday, Dec. 4
5:30 p.m. - Georgia Tech vs. Baylor
8 p.m. - Long Beach State vs. #8 seed UCLA

Saturday, Dec. 5
7 p.m. - First-round winners

Gametracker and free video (all matches) and free audio (UCLA matches)

The Bruins (23-8), the #8 national seed in the NCAA Tournament, host Long Beach State (22-8) in the first round at Pauley Pavilion on Friday at 8 p.m. Georgia Tech (21-9) and Baylor (22-9) will square off at 5:30 p.m., with the winners of Friday's two matches playing in the second round on Saturday at 7 p.m. Gametracker and free video (all matches) and free audio (UCLA matches only) will be available on

The winner of the UCLA sub-regional will travel to Gainesville, Fla. for the NCAA Regional round next weekend (Dec. 11-12). The round of 16 opponent will be the winner of the Columbus, Ohio sub-regional, which features #9 California, Lipscomb, Cincinnati and Ohio State. The other two national seeds in the Gainesville Regional are #1 Penn State and #16 Florida.

UCLA was ranked ninth in the final regular season AVCA Top 25 poll, a position it held for the second straight week. Despite not gaining a spot, the Bruins earned 49 more points in this week's rankings. UCLA was at eighth for the fifth straight week in this week's final Under Armour/Volleyball Magazine Top 20 rankings.

The rest of the Bruins' schedule through Regionals will feature free audio at In addition, free video will be available for all home matches through the postseason. Links to the audio and video, as well as Gametracker, can be found on the schedule page at

All-session passes for the first and second rounds can be purchased by calling 310-UCLA-WIN, at the Central Ticket Office on campus or on game day at Pauley Pavilion. All-session passes are $18 for adults and $10 for students/youths. Single-session passes are available at the Pauley Pavilion ticket booth on game day only and are $10 for adults and $6 for students. Ticket windows open 90 minutes prior to the first match. All tickets are general admission and are first-come, first-serve.

UCLA will be making its 28th appearance in the NCAA Tournament and holds an all-time record of 72-25 (.743). Including this season, the Bruins have hosted the first and second rounds for six of the last seven years. Since the NCAA field expanded to 64 teams in 1998, the Bruins are 14-0 in first and second round matches at Pauley Pavilion. UCLA has advanced to the Regional round in each of the last six seasons. The Bruins are 39-4 (.907) in Westwood in NCAA Tournament matches (28-2 at Pauley Pavilion, 11-2 at Wooden Center).

Sophomore Amanda Gil finished the regular season ranked fourth in the nation in blocks per set at 1.55. She is also 35th in hitting percentage at .357. Just on the edge of the Top 50 in their respective categories are sophomore Lainey Gera, who is 51st with 4.80 digs per set, and freshman Lauren Cook, who is 56th with 10.62 assists per set. As a team, the Bruins are ninth in bps at 2.80, 34th in kills per set (13.89), 37th in aps (12.82) and 44th in dps at 16.61.

The Bruins finished the regular season first in the Pac-10 in blocks per set (2.80) and digs per set (16.61) and were second in opponent hitting percentage (.176). In conference-only matches, UCLA was first in all three categories (.189 OHP; 2.87 bps; 17.60 dps). Individually, sophomore Amanda Gil remains first in bps at 1.55 and also ranks fifth in hitting percentage (.357). Sophomore Lainey Gera is fourth in dps (4.80), freshman Lauren Cook is seventh in assists (10.62) and freshman Bojana Todorovic is 10th in aces per set (0.25).

The Bruins' victory on Nov. 13 gave them their 11th-straight, 20-win season ... UCLA is 19-0 when holding its opponent under a .200 hitting percentage and 20-2 when hitting at least .200 ... after going 1-6 in five-set matches last season, the Bruins are 4-2 this year ... the Bruins are 20-2 when winning the opening set ... UCLA is on pace to break the team record for fewest number of service errors in a season. The Bruins, who had no errors in a match for the first time ever at USC on Nov. 6, have 136 service miscues this season. The 1982 squad committed 190 errors, the only time in UCLA history that a team has posted fewer than 200 service errors ... head coach Andy Banachowski won his 1,100th-career match on Oct. 31 at Stanford.

The Bruins will be facing Long Beach State for the second time this season on Friday. UCLA was swept by the 49ers in Fullerton on Sept. 19, 25-19, 25-16, 25-14. A recap and box score, as well as capsules on all four teams, can be found on page 5 of this release. UCLA still holds a 54-19 all-time lead against Long Beach State and is 22-4 in matches in Westwood. The two teams last met at Pauley Pavilion in the second round of the 2004 Tournament (Dec. 4), with the Bruins posting a sweep. UCLA has won 19 straight against Long Beach at home, with the 49ers' only four victories coming in a pair of matches in both 1972 and 1973. The Bruins are 3-1 against Long Beach State in the NCAA Tournament. UCLA defeated LBSU in the 1991 National Championship match at Pauley Pavilion, in the 2002 first round in Malibu and in the 2004 second round. The 49ers' only postseason win against the Bruins was a Regional Final victory in Long Beach in 2001.

The Bruins are 2-0 against both Baylor and Georgia Tech. UCLA swept the Bears in Waco, Texas on Sept. 14, 1997 and Nov. 25, 2000. The Bruins first played Georgia Tech on Sept. 10, 1993 in Honolulu, winning in four sets. The following year on Dec. 3, the Bruins knocked off the Yellow Jackets in three in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at Pauley Pavilion.

As she embarks on her final NCAA Tournament appearance, Kaitlin Sather looks to put an exclamation point on a memorable senior year that has seen her become the 12th player in UCLA history to post 1,000 kills and digs, move up to 11th on the Bruins' career kills list and earn her first All-Pac-10 first-team and Pac-10 Player of the Week awards. Sather is second on the team with 2.82 kills per set and 3.06 digs per set. During Pac-10 play, she led the squad with 3.15 kps and was second with 3.35 dps. Sather closed the regular season with double figures in kills in 14 of her last 16 matches and at least 10 digs in 16 of her last 18. The senior leads the Bruins in double-doubles with 16, recording 12 of them during Pac-10 play to give her 53 for her career. She had a consecutive double-double streak of six from Oct. 23 to Nov. 13 and four in a row from Sept. 10-16 and Oct. 2-16. Sather had a pair in the Bay Area with 11 kills and 12 digs at Cal (Oct. 30) and 14 kills and 20 digs at Stanford (Oct. 31), which earned her UCLA's 60th Pac-10 POW honor and the second this season (Lauren Cook, Sept. 14). She has posted 20 digs twice against Oregon (Oct. 23) and Stanford (Oct. 31), adding 16-dig contests against California (Oct. 3) and Nebraska (Sept. 13) and a 15-dig effort against USC (Oct. 9). Sather is second on the team with 21 double-figure digs contests, giving her 59 as a Bruin. Offensively, the senior has a team-leading 20 double-figure kills contests and 89 for her career. She had 11 straight double-figure kills matches from Oct. 2 to Nov. 13. Her season high came on Nov. 13 against Washington State when she had 19. Sather has crossed the 15-kill mark three other times against Washington State (16, Oct. 17), Oregon (16, Nov. 21) and USC (15, Oct. 9). She has led the Bruins in kills for a match 12 times. Her season-best hitting percentage of .560 came at Washington State on Oct. 17. She has 1,476 career kills to put her 11th on UCLA's all-time list. Sather also had a season-best six blocks on Nov. 21 at Oregon and has at least two roofs in 12 of her last 14 contests.

Lauren Cook became the fifth Bruin to earn Pac-10 Freshman of the Year honors on Monday and enters the postseason coming off her 15th double-double of the year against Arizona State on Saturday. Cook, who was also named to the All-Pac-10 honorable mention and Pac-10 All-Freshman squads, posted 36 assists and 10 digs and is second on the squad in double-doubles. She leads the team with 10.62 assists per set, is third with 19 aces and fourth with 2.43 digs per set. Cook established a new career high with 56 assists on Nov. 21 at Oregon. She has surpassed the 50-assist mark four times, recording 54 against Oregon (Oct. 23) and Washington State (Nov. 13) and 50, to go along with a season-high 18 digs, at Stanford on Oct. 31. The freshman had 10 double-doubles in Pac-10 play. Cook had a happy homecoming against Nebraska on Sept. 13, as the Lincoln native had 48 assists and 15 digs in a win over the Huskers. That match concluded an outstanding weekend that saw Cook post three double-doubles to earn Ameritas Players Challenge MVP, AVCA National Player of the Week and Pac-10 POW honors. She became just the fifth Bruin to earn AVCA National Player of the Week accolades, joining Annett Buckner (1994), Kristee Porter (1998), Nellie Spicer (2005) and Nana Meriwether (2006). Besides quarterbacking the offense, Cook has helped the Bruins with her killing, posting four kills or more nine times. She had a season-high six against Virginia, Arizona (Sept. 26) and California (Oct. 30). Cook had a season-high three aces against California on Oct. 3.

Sophomore Lainey Gera posted her 14th match with at least 20 digs on Saturday when she produced 23 against Arizona State. Gera has 20-plus digs in seven of her last nine contests and did it 12 times during Pac-10 play. The sophomore, who was named All-Pac-10 honorable mention on Monday, leads the Bruins with 4.80 digs per set and averaged 5.37 dps during conference play, which was second among league players. Gera set a career high with 28 digs at Washington on Oct. 16, a total she equaled at Stanford on Oct. 31. She also had a 26-dig effort against Washington State (Nov. 13), 25 at Nebraska (Sept. 13), 23 in both matches against USC (Oct. 9 and Nov. 6), 22 against BYU (Sept. 10), Stanford (Oct. 2), Oregon (Oct. 23) and Washington (Nov. 14), 21 at Arizona (Sept. 26) and Oregon (Nov. 21) and 20 at California (Oct. 30). Gera has double figures in digs in 18 of her last 19, a team-best 27 times this year and 33 times for her career. In addition to her prowess at digging, Gera has chipped in offensively with her serving and setting. The sophomore's 27 service aces put her second on the team. She has at least one in 10 of her last 15 matches and five over her last three contests. Gera's season and career high was three at Pepperdine on Sept. 16. She has also tallied at least five assists in a match 11 times, posting a career-high seven at Hawai'i (Aug. 30) and at Stanford (Oct. 31).

Sophomore Amanda Gil finished the regular season first in the Pac-10 in blocks per set at 1.55, posting her 21st match with at least five roofs on Saturday against Arizona State. Gil, an All-Pac-10 first-team honoree, had six blocks against the Sun Devils to go along with a team-high 11 kills. Gil, who is fourth in the nation in bps, produced at least five blocks 14 times during Pac-10 play. Her season high came against Oregon on Oct. 23 when she had 10 to go along with 14 kills for her second career double-double, both of which have come against the Ducks. Gil finally got her double-double after coming close with nine-block contests against Cal State Fullerton (Sept. 18) and Stanford (Oct. 2). She has produced eight roofs in a match three times against Virginia (Sept. 11), Pepperdine (Sept. 16) and Cal (Oct. 3) and seven six more times against UNLV (Sept. 4), Arizona (Sept. 26), Washington (Oct. 16), Washington State (Oct. 17), Stanford (Oct. 31) and USC (Nov. 6). The sophomore is also tops on the team in hitting at .357. She has swung at a .400 clip or better 12 times. Her season-best total (with at least 10 kills) came against Virginia when she hit .562 with 10 kills and one error in 16 attempts. Gil, who is third on the team with 2.32 kills per set, has 11 double-figure kills matches this season and 23 for her career. She had a season-best 16 at USC, hitting .560 for the match. Gil has also chipped in with her defense. She has at least four digs in a match 12 times, including a career-best seven at Nebraska (Sept. 13).

After posting only four double-doubles in her first two years in Westwood, junior Dicey McGraw already has seven this season after recording her third in a row on Nov. 13 against Washington State. McGraw had 12 kills and 10 digs against the Cougars after posting 12 kills and 15 digs at Stanford (Oct. 31) and 15 kills and 11 digs at USC (Nov. 6). Her first three double-doubles during Pac-10 play came consecutively, as she had 13 kills and 11 digs at ASU (Sept. 25), a career-high 20 kills and 15 digs against Arizona (Sept. 26) and 14 kills and 10 digs versus Stanford (Oct. 2). The team leader in kills per set at 3.08, McGraw, who was named to her first All-Pac-10 honorable mention team on Monday, has 16 double-figure kills matches this season and 47 for her career. She has led the Bruins in kills in a match 12 times. Including her career effort against Arizona, the junior has broken the 15-kill threshold five other times against Nebraska (18, Sept. 13), BYU (17, Sept. 10), Loyola Marymount (16, Sept. 5), Oregon (16, Nov. 21) and USC. In the match with BYU, she added 12 digs for her first double-double. McGraw has nine double-figure digs matches and is fifth on the team with 1.87 digs per set. The junior has set or tied seven career highs this year. She had a personal-best three aces and 22.5 points at Nebraska and hit .500 against Santa Clara on Aug. 28. McGraw also had a career high seven block assists and eight total blocks against Oregon (Oct. 23) and tied a personal best with two blocks solos against LMU.

Sophomore Katie Camp had her best match of the year on Nov. 21 at Oregon, tying a season high with 11 kills and setting season bests with a .526 hitting percentage and eight blocks. Camp had only one error in 19 swings against the Ducks. Her top two blocking matches this season came against Oregon, as she had seven against the Ducks on Oct. 23. Camp has at least three blocks in 12 of her last 15 matches and is second on the team with 0.94 blocks per set. The sophomore has produced at least five blocks in a match six times, tallying six at Washington State (Oct. 17) and five apiece against Nebraska (Sept. 13), Fordham (Sept. 19) and Long Beach State (Sept. 19). On offense, Camp recorded her first two double-figure kills matches this year on back-to-back nights against Stanford (11, Oct. 2) and California (10, Oct. 3) and is fifth with 1.81 kills per set. The sophomore has at least five kills in 12 of her last 15. Camp also ranks second in hitting at .300. She has hit at least .400 in a contest seven times.

Freshman Mari Hole has given the Bruins another option at the outside hitter position, totaling 2.94 kills per set over her last six matches, including a pair of double-figure kills contests at Oregon State and Oregon two weekends ago. Hole led the Bruins with a career-high 13 kills against the Beavers on Nov. 20 and came back with 11 more the next night against the Ducks. She also chipped in on defense with eight digs against the Beavers and seven against the Ducks. Hole, who was named to the Pac-10 All-Freshman honorable mention team, has six double-figure kills contests, posting 12 against Washington (Oct. 16) and Virginia (Sept. 11) and 10 against UNLV (Sept. 4) and Fordham (Sept. 19). She has at least four kills in 10 of her last 13 matches and is fourth on the team with 2.09 kps.

Freshman Bojana Todorovic produced her 12th double-figure digs match on Saturday against Arizona State when she had 11 and is third on the team with 2.46 digs per set. Todorovic, who was named to the Pac-10 All-Freshman Team on Monday, has double figures in digs in 10 of her last 15 matches and at least seven in four more. She recorded 15 digs in three straight matches against USC (Nov. 6), Washington State (Nov. 13) and Washington (Nov. 14). The freshman had 10 matches with at least 10 digs during Pac-10 play, where she averaged 2.74 dps. She had five in a row from Oct. 3-23 and four straight from Oct. 31 to Nov. 14. Todorovic has three double-doubles. Her first came on Oct. 3 against California when she had a season-high 14 kills and 13 digs. Her second double-double was at Washington on Oct. 16 when she posted 10 kills and 11 digs, adding another on Oct. 31 when she had 14 kills and 10 digs at Stanford. Todorovic's career high in digs was 16 against Fordham on Sept. 19. Offensively, she has at least 10 kills in five contests and is averaging 1.48 kills per set. Along with her three double-double matches, the freshman had 11 at Arizona State on Sept. 25 and 10 at Nebraska on Sept. 13. Todorovic leads the squad with 28 aces. She had a season-best four at Pepperdine on Sept. 16 and added three against Fordham.

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