SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Cal State Northridge claimed its opening match of the Sacramento State Invitational in dominating fashion as the Matadors swept Marist, 25-20, 25-10, 25-17 Friday at the Hornets Nest. CSUN hit a season-high .385 (47-12-91) as a team as sophomore Mahina Haina knocked down a match-high 12 kills.
In addition to Haina's 12 kills (556.), the Matadors (2-2) also received eight kills (.278), six digs and two aces from sophomore Natalie Allen and seven kills (.167) from sophomore Britney Graff. Fellow sophomore Nicole Jarvis had her best match of 2011 with six kills (.667) and a career-high eight blocks (one solo). Libero Cindy Ortiz posted a match-high 17 digs and setter Sydney Gedryn dished out 40 assists to go with seven digs and two blocks.
It was the second consecutive strong offensive match for Haina who is hitting .492 with 40 kills in 65 swings with just eight errors in the last two Matador wins.
"We established a rhythm early on and started to string together points," said head coach Jeff Stork. "We also eliminated a lot of errors and we produced the points we needed to produce to win sets. I wanted to see our point production up, and it was.
"We were able to get two blockers to the point of attack much of the night. Our aces were up and service errors were down which is also a good thing."
In a tight opening set, the Matadors and Red Foxes were tied at 10-10 before Northridge tallied four straight points to open up a 14-10 lead. CSUN maintained at least a three-point cushion from that point on. Back-to-back kills from Nicole Jarvis put the Matadors on the doorstep at 24-20 and CSUN cashed in on a Jarvis-Allen block. Both teams his reasonably well in the first frame as the Matadors hit .379 to .296 for the Red Foxes.
Northridge dominated set two as the Matadors hit .323 on their way to a 25-10 win. With the score knotted at 7-7, a Haina kill, a Monica McFarland ace, an Allen kill and another Jarvis-Allen block propelled the Matadors on a 13-2 run which put CSUN on top 22-9. A triple block courtesy of Hinger, Gedryn and Haina gave the Matadors set point at 24-10 and Mariah Counts notched her first collegiate ace ending the frame 25-10.
Three kills and three Marist hitting errors (two on CSUN blocks) opened the third set as the Matadors bolted to a 6-0 lead. A Gedryn kill put Northridge up 8-3 before a pair of Red Fox points narrowed the gap to 8-5. But back-to-back kills from Haina and Graff boosted the lead back to five at 10-5. An Una Siljegovic ace kept the Matadors in front by five (15-10) before a Gedryn kill and a Marist hitting error gave CSUN its largest lead of the set at 17-11. Kills from Allen and Siljegovic out of a Red Fox timeout extended the lead to 19-11 and the Matadors cruised home 25-17 win on a Puneet Pataria kill.
Joanna Foss led Marist with 11 kills (.267) as the Red Foxes hit .116 as a team.
Cal State Northridge continues action at the Sacramento State Invitational on Saturday as the Matadors take on Fresno State at 10 a.m. and the host Hornets at 7:30 p.m.
- GO MATADORS -