Final Road Matches of the Season on Tap
THE WEEK AHEAD: The Titans (10-15, 3-10) take the road to the central coast this weekend, their final away weekend of the season, and will face UC Santa Barbara (15-9, 10-2) on Friday night and Cal Poly (11-14, 5-7) on Saturday night. The Gauchos are coming off a win over league-leading Cal State Northridge (in fact, having swept the Matadors this season), while the Mustangs posted a win over UC Davis on Saturday. The Titans got big performances from senior outside hitter Bre Moreland (a pair of double-doubles without going to In 'n Out) and freshman outside hitter counterpart Faith Rockmore who blasted 22 kills against the Anteaters and had 13 versus the 49ers.
FRIDAY, NOV. 22 at UCSB (The Thunderdome), 7 p.m.
Cal State Fullerton (10-15, 3-10) vs. UCSB (15-9, 10-2)
Series Record: UCSB leads 8-59
Big West Record: UCSB leads 8-48
First Meeting: Lost, Oct. 1, 1982, 0-3 (1-15, 6-15, 12-15) at UCSB
Last Meeting: Lost, Oct. 26, 2013, 0-3 at Fullerton
Current Streak: Lost 2
Last 10 Meetings: 6-4
SATURDAY, NOV. 23 at Cal Poly (Mott Athletic Center), 7 p.m.
Cal State Fullerton (10-13, 3-8) vs. Cal Poly State (11-14, 5-7)
Series Record: Cal Poly leads 9-46
Big West Record: Cal Poly leads 9-30
First Meeting: Lost, Sept. 17, 1981, 0-2 (4-15, 5-15) at Cal Poly
Last Meeting: Lost, Oct. 25, 2013, 1-3 at Fullerton
Current Streak: Lost 1
Last 10 Meetings: 6-4
LAST WEEKEND: Bre Moreland led the Titans last weekend both offensively and defensively as the senior logged a pair of double-double performances, on Friday with a 23 kill, 22 dig scoresheet and on Saturday with a 20 kill, 19 dig book. However, the team was unable to capitalize on either night and wound up with a pair of losses, despite getting early set leads in both contests. Paige Reed-—in the libero role for both matches—and Abbie Miraldi each contributed key moments for the Titans, defensively, and Miraldi's serving was clutch for the team, especially on Friday. The Titans out-hit and out-blocked the Anteaters, but were out-performed at the net by Long Beach State the following night.
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In addition, the volleyball team has established its own official Twitter page (@FullertonVB).
TICKETS FOR UPCOMING HOME EVENTS: Tickets can be purchased online at fullertontitans.com, or at the Cal State Fullerton Athletics Ticket Office, located in the Titan House on campus off of Gymnasium Drive on the northeast side of Titan Gym. Game day sales and will call tickets will open an hour prior to the scheduled time at the specific venue.
VOLLEYBALL PROMOTION NIGHTS: There will be one more promotion night this year when the Titans hand out free rally buff to all those in attendance (while supplies last) at the November 16 match in Titan Gym against rival Long Beach State. The match is slated for a 7:30 p.m. first serve.
A LOOK AT THE OPPONENTS IN THE WEEK AHEAD:
UC Santa Barbara comes into the week in the second spot of the Big West, after sweeping Cal State Northridge. The Gauchos are now in control of their destiny: UCSB can claim at least a share of the conference title if both they win their final four matches. In the event should they tie with the Matadors, Santa Barbara will claim the automatic bid to the postseason because they have beaten CSUN twice. They received two votes in the AVCA Poll this week to move into a receiving votes slot.
Led by conference player of the week, freshman Ali Spindt, the Gauchos have cornered the volleyball market on players named Ali or Allie. There are four on the roster (three spelled Ali) which likely makes things complicated when they order at "to go" restaurants.
Cal Poly snapped a three-match skid over the weekend with a 3-0 win over UC Davis. The Mustangs will be celebrating their seniors when they host the Titans on Saturday. Cal Poly has improved from a season ago already and hope to finish on a high note in front of their home crowd. (They will play UC Riverside on Friday night.)
Freshman Taylor Gruenwald paces the Mustangs with a .284 attack efficiency, while senior Chelsea Hardin holds the team's top spot in kills per set with a 3.02 mark.
BIG WEST CONFERENCE TIDBIT
• Only Hawai'i is ranked this week (No. 12) as the losses to the Gauchos dropped Cal State Northridge to the receiving votes category (No. 26).
• Bre Moreland's efforts in the losses to Irvine and Long Beach State vaulted the senior outside hitter toward the middle of the career record books in all-time kills and digs with three matches remaining. Her 1,065 digs has her in 7th place, all-time, and she is tied for 8th all time in kills (with Sarah Morrison) with 954. Ahead is Lauren Goins with 1,144.
• The Titans have actually scored more points this season than their opponents, proving the old addage that timing is everything.
• Fullerton's 18.30 digs per sets ranks them first in the Big West and the team now ranks fourth in kills per set with a 13.10 average. McKenna Painton scoops up 4.59 attack attempts every set to lead the Big West and rank in the top 80 in the country.
• McKenna Painton recorded her eighth 20-plus dig match of the season last Saturday against UC Davis. She leads the Big West by nearly a half a dig per set at 4.59 and has the second-most total digs in the league (317). Bre Moreland (3.59 dps) ranks No. 8 in the league. Alyse Hensley's No. 5 ranking in kills per set (3.09) is just ahead of Moreland's 3.03 clip which is good for the No. 7 spot in the Big West
• With 997 assists now in 2013, junior setter Julie Consani (total of 1955 in her career thus far) has passed Jenna Carney (2003-06) for sixth on the Titan career Top 10. Next up for Consani is No. 5 Melissa Blackler (1995-97) at 2,360. Consani currently leads the Big West, dishing 10.96 assists per set (36th in the NCAA).
• Sophomore Holland Crenshaw is the only Titan represented in the Big West's Top 10 in hitting percentage (7th). The 6-foot-3 middle blocker / right-side hitter has posted a .296 average thus far, falling slighlty after her performances last week. She's miscued just 59 times (all season). UC Davis' Victoria Lee is leading the league with a .404 attack percentage.
Senior Alyse Hensley holds the No. 5 spot in the Big West in kills per set. She is averaging 3.09 blasts per set.
• In the absense last weekend of McKenna Painton (day to day), Paige Reed and Abbie Miraldi each contributed significantly to the team's defensive efforts. Reed was the libero and Miraldi filled Reed's usual defensive specialist role.
AWARD SEASON: Senior transfer Alyse Hensley followed up an all-tournament performance at the UNLV Invitational with an MVP effort at the Fullerton Classic. Hensley was named MVP of the tournament after averaging 3.14 kills per set and attacking at a rate of .337. She added a team-leading eight service aces along with 34 digs and nine blocks while totaling back-to-back double-doubles. McKenna Painton was also named to the all-tournament team after averaging 4.31 digs per set and five aces.
At Texas Tech, Bre Moreland was named to the Lone Star Showdown all-tournament team after averaging 3.22 kills and 4.78 digs per set. In addition Paige Reed earned all-tournament honors in Lubbock, Texas, after averaging 4.67 digs per set in the tourney.
2013 BIG WEST PRESEASON POLL: For the second straight year, the University of Hawai'i has been selected as the Big West Conference's top pick in the women's volleyball preseason poll, as selected by the nine league coaches. The Rainbow Wahine were a unanimous favorite, collecting all nine first-place votes en route to an 81-point total. Cal State Fullerton finished in seventh place with 35 points.
CAROLYN ZIMMERMAN: Toward the conclusion of her 12th season at Cal State Fullerton, Carolyn Zimmerman possesses an all-time record of 172-184 (.483). The sixth head coach in Fullerton's 37-year history, she is the winningest (.483) head coach in CSF volleyball program history, by a considerable margin.