THIS WEEK: No. 19 Arizona (15-8, 9-5) returns home to play host to its final two Pac-10 home matches of the season against California and No. 2 Stanford. The five-time defending league champion Cardinal are coming off a home victory over UCLA which moved them into a tie with the Bruins in the loss column at the top of the league. The Cats have won three matches in a row.
WILDCAT NOTES: At 9-5, Arizona has equaled its best-ever 14-match start in Pac-10 play ... The Cats swept the Washington schools on the road for just the fourth time since Pac-10 play started in 1986, but for the second year in a row ... Arizona's 21-19 victory in game five of its match with Washington (9/5) marked the second-longest fifth game in school history. Arizona State defeated Arizona, 24-22, in Tucson on Oct. 15, 1993 ... The Cats took two games and forced three match points against UCLA (10/22) after the Bruins had lost just two games in their first 10 league contests ... Arizona was the first team to hit better than .200 (.220) against UCLA this season ... Arizona faced three consecutive ranked opponents (#17 Southern California, #6 UCLA, #8 Brigham Young) for the first time since November 15-21, 1996 ... Prior to defeating Arizona State (10/30), UA had dropped three straight contests for the first time since Oct. 6-19, 1996 ... The Cats were swept in a home Pac-10 weekend series (vs. USC/UCLA) for the first time since the same two schools did so on Nov. 10 and 12, 1995 ... UCLA sophomore Kristee Porter's 36 kills at Arizona (10/22) were the most ever by a Wildcat opponent ... The Cats' loss to Arizona State (10/1) broke a streak of 24 consecutive matches they had won when they out-hit their opponent ... The Cats' sweep of Oregon (9/17) marked the sixth time they had held a Pac-10 opponent below a .100 hitting percentage in each game of a match ... Arizona won its first two conference matches of the season, but the Cats have never started a Pac-10 campaign 3-0 ... The 3,874 people in attendance at the Arizona-Nebraska match (9/11) marked the sixth-largest crowd ever to see a Wildcat volleyball contest ... Arizona remained fifth in the Nov. 3 District 8 rankings ... The Cats' sweep of No. 18 San Diego (9/4) was their first victory over a ranked opponent since a five-game win at home against No. 7 Southern California on Nov. 21, 1997, breaking a seven-match losing streak ... Seven of the Cats' 1999 opponents were ranked in the AVCA preseason poll, including three of the top four: Stanford (No. 2); Nebraska (3); and Hawaii (4) ... Arizona was featured on FOX Sports Net's Pac-10 Game of the Week three times: at UCLA (9/24); vs. Washington State (10/8); and at Stanford (10/15).
PAC-10 HONORS: Sophomore setter Dana Burkholder was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week (11/8) after leading the Cats to a road sweep of the Washington schools.
Burkholder posted 74 assists and a career-high seven blocks in the Cats' five-game win at Washington (11/5). The assist total was the fifth-best in Arizona history. In UA's sweep of Washington State, she added 38 assists. For the week, Burkholder averaged 14.0 assists per game and totaled 18 digs and 10 blocks. It was the first such honor of her career and the 11th ever by a Wildcat.
INDIVIDUAL NOTES: Jill Talbot hit a career-best .600 (10-1-15) at Washington State (11/6) ... Dana Burkholder set a career-high with seven blocks at Washington (11/5) and posted the fifth-best single-match assist total (74) in Arizona history ... Lisa Rutledge's 24 kills in the Washington match were the most by a Wildcat since Keisha Johnson's 25 at Oregon State (11/16/97) ... Stefani Saragosa set season-best marks in kills (14), digs (10) and blocks (7) in the Washington contest ... Marisa DaLee (11) and Raelene Elam (5) both matched their career-highs in blocks at Arizona State (10/30) ... Arizona's win at Southern California (9/25) was David Rubio's first road victory against the Trojans after seven defeats ... DaLee set a career-high with 21 kills vs. UCLA (10/22) ... In the same match, Elam recorded her career-best in digs with 22 ... Elam posted her career-high hitting percentage mark (.556) vs. Oregon (9/17) ... DaLee passed the 1,000-attempt plateau for her career at Nebraska (9/11), qualifying her for Arizona's hitting percentage leaders list. Her career mark of .365 easily bests former teammate Erin Aldrich's (1996-97) previous standard of .300 ... DaLee's 11 block assists vs. Santa Clara (9/3) tied her for third on the Cats' single-match list ... Shannon Torregrosa became the first Arizona freshman ever to post a double-double in her collegiate debut at UTEP (9/1) ... She is also only the fifth UA freshman ever to start her first match under David Rubio (Heidi Bomberger '93; Allison Napier '97; Burkholder '98; Leslie DuBois '98) ... Burkholder ranks third among active Pac-10 players in career assists (2,198). DaLee and Elam rank eighth in blocks (251) and digs (655), respectively ... Freshman outside hitter Christina Frost is red-shirting the 1999 season. ROAD WARRIORS: Arizona is 5-2 in Pac-10 road matches, having won its last four contests away from Tucson. With only a trip to Oregon and Oregon State remaining, the Cats have a chance to equal or better their best Pac-10 road mark ever. In each of the last two seasons, Arizona has gone 6-3 on the road in conference action. Prior to 1997, the Cats had never posted a winning league record away from McKale. Overall, Arizona is 6-3 on the road, losing only to Top-10 foes Stanford, UCLA and Nebraska. TRIPLE-DOUBLE: Sophomore setter Dana Burkholder posted her first career triple-double in the Cats' five-game loss to UCLA (10/22). The Bakersfield, Calif., native recorded a career-high 11 kills to go along with 70 assists (a season-best mark) and 14 digs. Her triple-double was the 18th in Arizona history and the fourth by a Wildcat setter. The last UA setter to accomplish the feat was Mary Linton vs. Stanford on Nov. 12, 1989. Earlier this year vs. Santa Clara (9/3), junior Marisa DaLee came within one dig of her first career triple-double.
SINGLE-GAME RECORD: Arizona's .842 hitting percentage in game two of its match with the Huskies (10/7) was a single-game UA record:
Opponent K-E-A (Game) Pct. 1. vs. Washington (10/7/99) 16-0-19 (2) .842 2. Texas Tech (11/27/93) 15-1-20 (1) .700 3. at Pittsburgh (11/23/84) 10-0-15 (3) .667 Santa Clara (9/5/92) 10-2-12 (5) .667 5. vs. New Orleans (9/9/95) 13-0-20 (2) .650
WASHINGTON SWEEP: Arizona posted several noteworthy numbers in its three-game sweep of Washington (10/7) in Tucson. Among them were: *The Cats' .427 hitting percentage for the match was their fifth-best ever and their second-best in a Pac-10 contest.
*Their .842 hitting percentage (16-0-19) in game two was the Cats' best-ever in a single game, besting the .700 they hit against Texas Tech (in Albuquerque) on Nov. 27, 1993, in game one.
*Junior middle blocker Marisa DaLee's .667 hitting percentage for the match tied for the fifth- (now seventh-) best by an Arizona player. *The Cats came within one point in game two of its first-ever 15-0 win in a Pac-10 game. It was their fifth 15-1 victory in league play. Arizona has had four 15-0 wins out of league.
JUNIOR NATIONALS: Sophomore Dana Burkholder and freshman Lisa Rutledge missed the last week of preseason practice and the first week (five matches) of the regular season representing the United States at the Junior World Games in Saskatoon and Edmonton, Canada, Aug. 28-Sept. 5. Burkholder, the club's starting setter, had competed for the U.S. team in 1998 as well. UA joined Stanford as the only schools with two players on the team, which qualified for the quarterfinals before being eliminated. DaLEE HONORED: Junior middle blocker Marisa DaLee was named the first 1999 Pac-10 Player of the Week after leading the Cats to a 4-1 mark and a sweep of No. 18 San Diego the week of Sept. 6.
It was the second such honor for DaLee, who also won it last Nov. 2, and the 10th ever by a Wildcat.
DaLee hit .345 while averaging 4.18 kills and 1.29 blocks per game through the Cats' first five matches of the season. The 6-foot-3 Phoenix native put up those numbers without the assistance of the Cats' regular setter, Dana Burkholder, who missed the week's action while competing for the U.S. Junior National Team at the 10th World Championships in Canada.
PRESEASON RANKINGS: Pac-10 coaches voted Arizona third in their annual preseason poll. That is the Cats' best-ever finish in the coaches' poll. Arizona has finished better than predicted in five of head coach David Rubio's seven seasons.
UA was also voted No. 15 in the USA Today/AVCA Preseason Top 25. That is the Wildcats' top preseason ranking under Rubio. Arizona's best previous preseason ranking came in 1987, when it started the season at No. 11. HEAD COACH DAVID RUBIO: David Rubio (Cal State Northridge '82) is in his eighth season as head coach of the Cats and his 13th year overall. He is 138-84 (.622) with Arizona and has led UA to five NCAA Tournament appearances in the last six years. Rubio has led the Cats to three consecutive and four total 20-win seasons. He's coached eight All-Pac-10 performers and eight academic all-conference athletes. He ranks fifth all-time among Pac-10 coaches in winning percentage. Rubio is 258-149 (.634) overall.
Arizona's win over Oregon State (9/16) was the 250th of his career. The Cats' match with Stanford (10/15) marked the 400th contest of his head coaching career. Their opening contest of the season, a victory over UTEP (9/1) was the 200th of Rubio's Arizona career.
ARIZONA VS. CAL: The Cats and Bears will be meeting for the 30th time, with Arizona leading the series, 23-6 ... In matches played in Tucson, UA leads, 11-3 ... The Cats are 21-6 vs. California in Pac-10 play, 10-3 at home ... Head coach David Rubio is 13-2 vs. the Bears, 6-1 in Tucson ... Arizona has won its last seven contests with Cal.
Earlier This Year at California
Date Site W/L Results Scores 10/16 A W 3-0 15-10, 15-3, 15-10
ARIZONA VS. STANFORD: The Cats and Cardinal will be meeting for the 38th time, with Stanford leading the series, 35-2 ... In matches played in Tucson, the Cardinal lead, 16-1 ... The Cats are 1-26 vs. Stanford in Pac-10 play, 1-12 at home ... Rubio is 1-14 vs. the Cardinal, 1-6 in Tucson ... Stanford has won its last 11 matches with UA.
Earlier This Year at Stanford
Date Site W/L Results Scores 10/15 A L 0-3 14-16, 4-15, 2-15