Feb. 12, 2010
LA JOLLA, Calif. - Seniors Kevin McKniff and Jacek Ratajczak each had a team-high 12 kills as top-ranked Cal State Northridge won its second straight and fifth in its last six matches with a hard fought 30-26, 30-26, 30-27 win at No. 13 UC San Diego on Friday.
"We played tough tonight and battled a good UC San Diego team," said Matador head coach Jeff Campbell. "I'm very happy with the win."
The Matadors (11-2, 8-2 MPSF) continue their best start in school history and remain unbeaten in seven matches away from The Matadome. Northridge also completed the season sweep of the Tritons for the 16th straight season.
After hitting a season-high .476 in Thursdays 3-0 win over No. 6 Long Beach State, Northridge hit a solid .345 (51-13-110) against the Tritons on Friday. McKniff had 12 kills while hitting .688 and also had a pair of aces and six blocks (two solo). Ratajczak also had 12 kills, hitting .524 and Theo Edwards also reached double figures in kills with 11 (.226).
After a Spangler kill evened the score at 23-23 in the first set, Northridge used a McKniff kill, an Edwards-McKniff block, an Edwards kill and a triple block from Nua, McKniff and Edwards to open up a 27-23 lead. UCSD pulled within three at 29-25 before Edwards ended the set with his fifth kill of the opening frame.
The Matadors also held a slim 22-21 lead in the second set before scoring three points to take a 25-21 lead. Consecutive points pulled the Tritons within two at 27-25 but kills from Ratajczak and Gaudino along with a Fritsch hitting error put Northridge up two sets to none.
The Matadors completed the sweep in similar fashion to the first two sets. With the score knotted at 20, a McKniff kill and a Phil Bannan setting error put Northridge up by two. Following a Triton timeout, Edwards gave the Matadors a three-point lead with a kill and the Northridge lead was never less than two the rest of the way.
For the Tritons, Frank Fritsch had a match-high 17 kills (.256) while Joel Davidson added 11 (.455) and Jason Spangler chipped in 10 (.208).
Cal State Northridge continues its five-match road trip next week as the Matadors travel to UC Irvine and UCLA.
- GO MATADORS -