Oct. 7, 2003
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The Wildcats' slide continued to five straight defeats after a pair of losses to No. 4 Stanford and No. 9 Cal ... Arizona's struggles on offense again proved to be the Wildcats undoing. In the two matches Arizona hit just .191 as a team and committed over twice the number of attack errors as its opponents (64 to 27) ... In Friday's loss to the Cardinal, the Wildcats could not sustain their level of play that earned them a game one win. After hitting .364 in the opening frame, Arizona's passing and setting broke down and led to a .136 hitting percentage in games 2-4 ... Arizona's sophomore trio of Jennifer Abernathy, Bre Ladd and Kim Glass combined for 47 of UA's 60 kills in the match, but also teamed up for 22 attack errors and a .243 hitting percentage ... Stanford out-blocked the Wildcats 11 to 3 in the match ... In Saturday's loss to the Golden Bears, Arizona's passing and setting improved, but the Wildcats struggled to keep the majority of their attacks in play. Arizona doubled up Cal on the number of hitting errors in the match (30 to 15) ... A bright spot for the Wildcats against Cal was the play of junior Jolene Killough, who tallied nine kills on 16 swings with just two errors for a team-high .438 hitting percentage.
Its Own Worst Enemy
Although the rigorous schedule Arizona has played this season has meant that there are have been few breaks for the Wildcats, it appears that UA, not the opposition, is perhaps the biggest foe on the floor. In the matches it has lost, Arizona is statistically better then its opponents nearly across the board. Arizona is superior in total kills, assists, aces, digs and total blocks. However, the most telling stats might be the differences in hitting percentage, total attempts and attack errors. UA's inefficient offense (92 more attack errors then its opponents on just 81 more swings) has caused the Wildcats to hit just .202 as a team in their losses while opponents have hit .275.
UA vs. Opponents in Matches Lost
G K KPG Hit% APG SAPG DPG BPG Points
Arizona 37 565 15.27 .202 13.73 1.65 13.08 2.30 711
Opp. 37 553 14.95 .275 13.16 1.54 12.38 2.24 693
Struggling to Close It Out
The Wildcats are still searching for a way to close out their matches. Countless times, Arizona has either held an advantage or been tied late in games this season only to have the frame slip away. Poor passing, setting and serving have been the primary causes in many of the late game losses.
Excluding this two-week stretch, Arizona has played four consecutive matches against top 25 teams in the regular season four times (1992-1995) since David Rubio took over in 1992, but never against four teams ranked in the top 10 ... In 1993 Arizona went 3-1 in a four-match stretch against ranked teams ... The closest Arizona has come to playing in such a tough stretch came in 2000 when UA played four top 10 teams over five matches. The Wildcats faced No. 9 Florida, No. 6 USC, No. 7 UCLA and No. 6 Colorado State with just a match against unranked ASU sandwiched in between.
Taking on the Top Dog
Arizona's Saturday match up with undisputed No. 1 USC will mark the 11th time since 1992 that Arizona will face the top ranked team in the nation. During the 12-year span the Wildcats are 1-9 against No.1 ranked teams with the lone upset coming in 1993 against UCLA in David Rubio's second season on the bench. Arizona twice faced USC as the No.1 team last season and dropped both matches 3-0.
The Race To 1,000
Sophomore Kim Glass, who recorded a single-season school record 556 kills in her freshman year, is on pace to become the fastest Arizona player to reach 1,000 kills in a career. After posting 304 kills in Arizona's 15 matches this season, Glass has accumulated 860 career kills in 47 matches played. Should she knock down the remaining 140 kills needed to reach the mark in 2003, Glass would become the first sophomore in school history to do so. Currently she's averaging 20.2 kpm this season, and should she continue at that pace Glass would reach 1,000 kills during Arizona's road trip to the Bay Area in late October. Former Wildcat All-American Barb Bell is currently the fastest to 1,000, having achieved the milestone in the 10th match of her junior year, her 65th career match.
Leading The Way
Sophomore outside hitter Kim Glass has picked up right where she left off after her record setting freshman season. In Arizona's 15 matches this season Glass has led the Wildcats in kills each time. She already has eight 20-plus kill matches this season to push her career total to 22, third all-time at Arizona, and has finished in double digit kills in all 15 matches.
Kim Glass' 31 kills effort against Arizona State on Sept. 26 was the 14th time an Arizona player has tallied 30 or more kills in a match and the second time in her career ... The effort tied for the eighth-best single match kill total and was just the second time that player who finished with 30 or more kills also accounted for over half of the team kill total in the match. Glass' 31 kills was 52 percent of Arizona's kill total against the Sun Devils. Melissa McLinden's school record 41-kill effort against BYU in the 1985 NCAA tournament was 55 percent of UA's 75 kills in the five game loss ... Arizona has lost seven of the 14 matches in school history in which a player has 30 or more kills.
A Year Later, A Year Better
Bre Ladd's first season as a Wildcat got off to a slow start. In her first 12 matches as a freshman in 2002 Ladd had tallied only 83 kills (1.77 kpg) and was hitting just .196. Flash forward to the first 15 matches this season and a more experienced Ladd has stepped forward. Now in her sophomore season, Ladd is second on the team with 161 kills (2.93 kpg) and leads the team with 1.07 bpg..
The Wildcats feature a decidedly youthful team in 2003. Arizona's roster of 14 includes just one senior and three juniors. The other 10 spots consist of four sophomores and six freshmen (including redshirt Meghan Cumpston). Arizona's starting lineup through the first 12 matches have consisted of two freshmen, three sophomores and a junior.
Arizona's loss to the Sun Devils on Sept. 26 knocked UA out of the top 25 for the first time since 1998, a string of 83 consecutive polls. The complete poll can be found on pg. 4.
The Current Streak
Arizona's current losing streak is the longest since 1995 when the Wildcats dropped six straight matches to end the season ... Arizona, which has lost five straight Pac-10 matches, has not lost six consecutive conference matches since 1992. That '92 team earned its first Pac-10 win in its seventh conference match of the year and finished 4-14 in the Pac.
Setting Them Up
Stephanie Butkus is Arizona's first true freshman to fill the starting setter role since Dana Burkholder took the floor as a first-year Wildcat in 1998. Although Butkus has had her ups and downs this season, her numbers aren't much different from two-time All-American Burkholder's first 15 matches in a Wildcat uniform.
Player Year G Assists APG Team Hitting %
Burkholder 1998 57 690 12.11 .231
Butkus 2003 55 651 11.84 .228
Killough In The Middle
With the injury to Angie Ayers in the summer, it was no secret that junior Jolene Killough was going to need to step up her game this season. A candidate to redshirt in 2001 and '02, Killough had played sparingly in her first two seasons in the Cardinal and Navy. Now with a starting role all to her own, the 6-foot-5 Killough has responded in a positive way. Through Arizona's first 15 matches this season, Killough has already surpassed her previous two-year career numbers across the board.
Killough's Numbers - 2001 and '02 vs. 2003
Years G K Hit % KPG SA BA SB TB BPG
2001 & '02 78 53 .278 0.68 4 22 2 30 0.38
2003 56 112 .332 2.00 15 46 5 51 0.91
Odds and Ends
Sophomore Bre Ladd and Kim Glass are on pace to finish with the third-most service aces in a single season at Arizona ...Classmate Jennifer Abernathy has doubled her kill output of all of last season in 13 matches this year.
Arizona continues its four match stretch against Top 10 teams this week with a road trip to Los Angeles to take on No. 8 UCLA on Friday and defending national champions USC on Saturday. The Bruins have lost matches to No. 2 Hawaii and No. 1 USC, while the Women of Troy are undefeated and have lost just one GAME this season.
Upcoming Opponent Series Data
All-Time Record UCLA leads 42-12-1 USC leads 39-14
UA Streak Won 3 Lost 2
on the road against (since '86) 4-13 ` 4-14*
Last Five Matches 4-1 2-3*
Last 10 Matches 5-5 4-6*
David Rubio Against 9-13 7-16
* Includes Arizona's 3-2 win over USC in the 2001 NCAA Regional Final
Misc. Series Notes
Arizona has won two of its last three matches played at Pauley Pavilion ... Arizona is one of two visiting teams in the last three years to defeat USC at home. The Wildcats downed USC 3-2 at the NCAA Regional Final in Los Angeles in 2001. Stanford defeated USC in Los Angeles last season ... Arizona last won a regular season match at USC in 1999 ... Two of Mick Haley's five defeats at USC have come from Arizona (both in 2001) ...
The Bruins (12-2, 4-1)
Arizona will take on the Bruins on Friday as Arizona will look to extend a three-match winning streak in the series ... UCLA is coming off a pair of five-game wins over the schools from Washington ... The Bruins have lost just two matches this season to the top two ranked teams in the nation, USC and Hawaii ... In both loses UCLA was able to take at least one game from both teams. For USC it was the only game it has lost this season ... The Bruins return four starters and 11 letter winners from last season's 20-14 NCAA second round team ... Paced by the reigning Pac-10 Player of the Week Brynn Murphy's 195 total kills, the Bruins has three players with over 100 kills this season Murphy also leads all regular players with a .357 hitting percentage ... Cira Wright leads the Bruin effort at the net with 58 total blocks and a 1.29 bpg average ... 2002 All-Pac-10 libero Chrissie Zartman leads the conference in digs per game with an average of 4.02. She already has over 200 digs this season ... Andy Banachowski, the Dean of Division I volleyball, is in his 37th year at the helm of the Bruins and has guided UCLA to a 951-237 record during his career, the most victories among all active coaches.
Arizona-UCLA Team Stats Head-to-Head
Team G KPG Pct. APG SAPG DPG BPG
Arizona 56 15.77 .228 14.04 1.82 12.93 2.40
UCLA 50 16.86 .270 14.80 1.36 15.90 2.59
The Women of Troy (14-0, 5-0)
The undefeated defending national champions have been nearly unstoppable in their chase to defend their title ... The Women of Troy have lost just one game all season long and possess one of the most balanced attacks in all of Division I ... Returning all six starters and 10 letterwinners from last season title-winning team, USC boasts five players that have tallied over 100 kills already this year ... Paced by Emily Adams' 3.67 kpg average, three players are averaging over three kills per game ... USC is also potent on the block with three players averaging over a block per game for the season. Adams' 1.47 bpg leads the team. ... As a team, USC leads the Pac-10 in hitting percentage, opp. hitting percentage, assists and kills ... The Women of Troy will not make many errors as they are hitting .344 for the season and have five players hitting .285 or better, including a pair of players hitting .400 or better for the year ... USC also has nearly as many service aces (80) as it does errors (89) ... Head coach Mick Haley is in his third season on the bench at USC and has racked up an impressive 60-5 record with the Women of Troy.
Arizona-USC Team Stats Head-to-Head
Team G KPG Pct. APG SAPG DPG BPG
Arizona 56 15.77 .228 14.04 1.82 12.93 2.40
USC 43 17.58 .344 16.14 1.86 15.70 3.26