Colorado Travels to Crucial California Matches
Boulder — The University of Colorado women's volleyball aims to improve its Pac-12 ranking this weekend when they play at Cal Friday at 8 p.m., before playing on No. 8 Stanford's home court Sunday at 1 p.m.
Over the past weekend, the Buffs (15-7, 7-5 Pac-12) defeated both UCLA (11-10. 5-7 Pac-12) and No. 24 USC (16-7, 8-4 Pac-12). It's the third time in program history that CU has defeated USC, and the first weekend where CU has beaten both LA Schools.
Hart was a defensive stronghold for the Buffs, earning nine blocks over the weekend. She was named Pac-12 Defensive Player Of The Week for the fourth time in her career, the most of any player in CU volleyball history for a single category. Hart's blocking, along with 13 blocks from Alexia Kuehl against the LA schools, helped the Buffs elevate from 13th in the NCAA in blocks per set to 10th. In the Pac-12, the Buffs are ranked second in blocks per set with 2.79, barely trailing Stanford who leads with 2.82.
With the victories, the Buffs received four votes in the most recent AVCA Coaches Poll, marking the first time in six weeks that CU has received any number of votes.
Offensively, outside hitter Maya Tabron leads the Buffs in kills per set with 3.39 while Lexi Hadrych trails with 3.09 kills per set. Earlier this season, Hadrych notched nine kills versus California and hit a team-best 15 kills against Stanford, hitting over .270 in both matches.
Friday's match versus Cal will be shown on Cal's Live Stream and Sunday's game against Stanford will be featured on Pac-12 Mountain.
The Golden Bears (7-15, 0-12 Pac-12) are on a 12-game losing streak and are 3-6 at home this season. Cal hasn't won a single conference match, placing them in last in the Pac-12. Offensively, the Golden Bears are hitting .185 as a team, and opposite Lydia Grote has a team-best 276 kills. On the defensive end, Cal is averaging 2.3 blocks per set and 13.8 digs per set. Middle blocker Sophie Scott leads the team with 80 blocks on the year while libero Tara DeSa has posted 304 digs so far.
The Cardinal (16-4, 11-1 Pac-12) are on a 10-game streak with a 4-2 record at home. Stanford leads the Pac-12, with their only conference loss coming in the form of a sweep on the road by No. 21 Oregon.
The Cardinal are hitting an impressive .285 while holding their opponents to .208. Setter Kami Miner leads in attack percentage at .467 with 53 kills on the year, followed by middle blocker Sami Francis who is hitting .394 and has earned 115 kills. Currently, the team is averaging 2.4 more kills per set than their opponents.
Stanford also has a strong defensive front, with libero Elena Oglivie earning 284 out of the team's 951 digs this year. The Cardinal have three players who have posted more than 70 season blocks. Middle blocker McKenna Vicini leads the way, followed by Francis and opposite Kendall Kipp.