Titans Hold Off Tigers in Five
FULLERTON, Calif. – Cal State Fullerton made things interesting on Saturday night, needing the full five sets to edge Pacific, 3-2 (25-19, 28-26, 16-25, 23-25, 15-9), at Titan Gym despite holding a two-set lead early on.
Once again senior Kayla Neto led the Titans (12-12, 6-5) with a match-high 22 kills while adding 18 digs for her 15th double-double of the season. Junior Bre Moreland landed 13 kills and 18 digs to produce her 15th double-double of 2012 as well, while freshman Lauren Kissell chipped in 12 kills while attacking at a team-best clip of .385.
Fullerton headed to the break with a two-set lead after hitting over .200 in the first two sets. Neto's five kills led Fullerton as the Titans hit at a clip of .205 in the first set, and CSF led most of the way, as Pacific had the advantage just once during the first frame.
The second game was more closely contested, but Dewberry's service ace finally ended it for the Titans as Fullerton took a two-set lead for the first time since Sept. 14 with a 28-26 win. The teams combined for 35 kills as each hit at a clip of .220 in a game that featured 18 ties and seven lead changes.
Pacific (17-7, 5-6) gained momentum in the third set, holding Cal State Fullerton to a .000 attacking percentage as the Titans managed just seven kills compared to the Tigers' 16. Pacific attacked at a clip of .276 in the fourth set, landing 14 kills and spreading the ball around as four different Tigers totaled at least three kills.
But the fifth and final set belonged to the Titans as CSF found its stride attacking at a rate of .353, while also dropping in two aces courtesy of Neto and Dewberry. The Titans finished the night with nine aces, led by Moreland's three.
Pacifc was led by Kat Schulz's career-high 18 kills and 18 digs, while Megan Birch added 13 kills.
Cal State Fullerton will remain at Titan Gym, hosting UC Riverside at 7 p.m., Saturday.
Notes: Cal State Fullerton won the first two sets in a match for the first time since Sept. 14 vs. Brown…Fullerton is an undefeated 6-0 after winning the first two sets…Cal State Fullerton is 4-4 in five-set matches in 2012…Kayla Neto has now recorded 12 straight double-doubles (15 overall)…Bre Moreland also contributed her 15thdouble-double of the season…Neto also has totaled 1,507 career kills, moving to third place on Fullerton's all-time list…Neto has now totaled nine matches in 2012 with at least 20 kills…sophomore Julie Consani recorded a career-high 54 assists…senior Gabrielle Dewberry produced her fifth match of 2012 with at least 30 kills…senior Torrie Brown made her first appearance for the Titans since suffering an injury on Sept. 14 vs. San Diego State…the Titans and Tigers split the season series with each team winning at its respective home court.