Nov. 12, 2010
No. 20 Arizona (7-5, 18-7) at No. 6 USC (9-4, 21-4)
Friday, Nov. 12
8 p.m. MST | Galen Center| Los Angeles, Calif.
No. 20 Arizona (7-5, 18-7) at No. 10 UCLA (7-6 , 17-7)
Saturday, Nov. 13
8 p.m. MST | Wooden Center| Westwood, Calif.
Ahead This Week for UA Volleyball: The No. 20 Wildcats, coming off wins over Oregon and Oregon State at home, head to Los Angeles to face a pair of Top 10 ranked teams in No. 6 USC and No. 10 UCLA. UA, still smarting over falling against the Bruins and Trojans in five sets in Tucson last month, will look to return the favor. In terms of conference standings, the Trojans are in third place followed by the Cats who are tied for fourth and UCLA in fifth. All three are trying to improve their NCAA Tournament resume as the month progresses to Selection Sunday.
Stay Connected: There are many mediums for you to stay connected with Arizona Volleyball...First and foremost, check out recaps, schedules, releases, GameTracker and general updates at ArizonaWildcats.com...If you want more in depth news straight from the coaching staff, check out the Arizona Volleyball twitter feed at twitter.com/arizonavball...Additionally, all home matches will be streamed live through UA's Comcast All-Access player...And lest we forget about the Arizona Athletics Facebook page, check us out over the world's largest social network through either the general Arizona Athletics page or sport specific page.
Last week: Arizona put together arguably its most efficient match of the season last Friday against Oregon, topping the ranked foe in three quick sets. Setter Paige Weber distributed the ball with ease as the UA hitters found points easy to come by. Cursty Jackson led the way with 12 kills followed by Whitney Dosty with 11, Tiffany Owens with nine and Courtney Karst with six. Additionally libero Candace Nicholson totaled nine digs while Karst and backrow specialist Marketa Hanzlova led the way each with 10. On Saturday vs. the Beavers, UA kept up the intensity over two sets, only to get complacent, letting OSU back in the match before winning in four sets. Against OSU, Owens was back to her old ways with 19 kills and 15 digs for her 14th double-double of the year. Weber also filled up the stat sheet last Saturday seven kills, 44 assists, eight digs and two blocks.
In The Rankings: Arizona moved up three spots in the latest AVCA rankings, charting in at No. 20 overall. It's the fifth consecutive poll in which Arizona has been ranked and eighth overall. The Pac-10 continues to lead the country in teams ranked with seven for the fourth straight week. This week USC enters Friday's matchup No. 6 while UCLA is ranked 10th.
Head Coach Dave Rubio ...is in his 19th season as head coach of Arizona. In that time span, Rubio has a record of 358-207. Rubio also boasts a career record of 480-273 in 24+ career years. In the last ten seasons, Rubio has guided the Wildcats to five Sweet 16s, four Elite Eights and to Arizona's first-ever Final Four. His teams have won over 200 matches during this ten-year stretch, including 16 in the NCAA Tournament, which is six more than the previous 14 postseason teams combined. Rubio is assisted by associate head coach Steve Walker, assistant coach Allison Napier and volunteer coach Melissa Ohta.
A Glance At The Conference: Each year the Pac-10 Conference is arguably the nation's toughest league in volleyball and this season is no different. With three weeks left on the schedule, the top teams continue to try and separate themselves from one another. No. 2 Stanford and No. 3 California are currently tied for the conference's best record at 11-2. After a plethora of five-set losses, the Wildcats will look for revenge in going against the league a second time around. Additionally, it'd be no surprise to see all seven ranked conference teams selected for the NCAA Tournament.
Five-Setters: Through 12 conference matches, Arizona has played to five-sets seven times posting a record of 3-4 in those. The seven conference five-setters in one season trail only UA's 1993 season when it played nine conference five-set matches and one against ASU in the NCAA Tournament. Here's to hopefully all this tense five-set deuce match experience paying off for the Cats in high-pressure situations.
Double Trouble: Over the course of the season, Tiffany Owens has been the Cats' top scorer and defender. The versatile outside hitter passes and serves in every rotation and has a knack for racking up double-digit kills and digs. Her 14 total double-doubles on the season, leads all Pac-10 players. Against ASU on Friday, Tiffany was as impressive as ever, totaling 23 kills and 23 digs. It was the fourth time this year where she's put up a 20 spot in each category.
Cursty "Cee-Jay" Jackson: The Cats middle blocker has been picking up her offensive production as of late, leading UA in kills against Oregon with 12. The next night, Cee Jay was her ever consistent self, notching 12 kills again vs. OSU and adding four blocks and three digs. Over the conference matches, Jackson leads all Pac-10 players with a hitting percentage of .392. She also is fifth in blocks in the conference at 1.18.
Arizona's Offensive Spark: Senior Paige Weber is proving to be one of the nation's top setters yet again in 2010 as she has totaled 1068 assists for an a/s ratio of 11.01. Now in her final year at UA, Weber has recorded 4, 701 total assists, good for second on UA all-time assist chart, trailing only All-American Dana Burkholder. Weber is also third among active Pac-10 setters in total assists.
Quite the Streak: Weber has put together quite an impressive iron-woman streak, playing in every set of her Wildcat career. That amounts to 421 consecutive sets played over three plus seasons. In terms of matches started, Weber is currently fourth on the UA list with 116. Should Weber start UA's last eight matches and a possible NCAA Tournament match, she'll tie Bre Ladd's record of 123 matches started for a career.
NCAA Selection Sunday: This year's annual NCAA Selection show will be November 28 from 1 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. on ESPNews. Tune in to find out who the Wildcats will face should they get a bid to play in the NCAA Tournament.
Pac-10 Preseason Poll: In this year's Pac-10 Coaches Poll, Arizona was slated to finish fourth overall behind Stanford (1), Washington (2) and USC (3). It's the Wildcats highest poll position since the 2005 season. Seven Conference teams were ranked among the AVCA preseason poll. Currently seven are in this week's top 25.