Bulldogs Fall 3-0 In Opener To UC Santa Barbara
Aug. 25, 2006
Fresno, Calif. - Prior to the opening night of the Fresno State Invitational, the Bulldog volleyball team opened the 2006 season with a single match with UC Santa Barbara in the North Gym on Friday. The welcome was short-lived however, as the Gauchos defeated Fresno State in three games 20-30, 22-30, 24-30. Freshman Lacey Gera led the way for the Bulldogs with 12 kills and 8 digs in her first collegiate match.
Fresno State started the match quickly, as Lacey Gera came out swinging in her first competition as a Bulldog, recording eight kills in the first game as the Bulldogs and Gauchos traded points early, but an accuarate attack from the Gauchos sunk the Bulldogs in the first game, as UCSB hit .442 in the first game, taking a 30-20 win.
The second game was also close early, as Alisha McKee took the initiative on the attack and brought the Bulldogs into the game with five kills. UCSB again had the answer for that attack, and went on a run of five points to take a 17-11 lead following a service error by Angela Wiggins and an attack error by McKee. The Bulldogs brought the lead back to three at 20-17 after Wiggins put home one of her 3 kills on the night, but the Gauchos started another long run keyed by kills from Jamie Garbisch and Olivia Waldowski to take a 27-20 lead, and went on to win the game 30-22.
Opening the third game quickly, Fresno State used a lineup switch and some aggressive play from freshman Lacey Gera and Lexi Watson to open a 7-3 lead in the early portion of that game. Santa Barbara slowly closed the gap, turning Fresno State attacking errors to their advantage, tying the game at 11 and then holding a lead for the rest of the game, as the Bulldogs hit -0.35 in the final set.
The Gauchos attack was overall their strongest point, as UCSB hit .295 on the match, led by Olivia Waldowski with 13 kills, though four players were in double figures, balanced out by libero Emily Hendrickson who had 29 digs in the match.
For Fresno State, Lacey Gera led the team with 12 kills in her first match as a Bulldog, and returning starter Alisha McKee contributed 11 in the losing effort. Libero Cheryl Selenak led the Bulldogs with 16 digs in the match.
The Bulldogs return to action this evening, as Fresno State hosts the 19th annual Fresno State Invitational. The evening starts off with No. 6 Santa Clara facing Pacific at 6 p.m., and the Bulldogs will play No. 25 Kansas State immediately following that match. The Bulldogs will play all three other teams in the tournament over the next two days, starting with Pacific at 7 p.m. on Saturday and then Santa Clara at 1 p.m. on Sunday.