MATADORS THIS WEEK:
MATCH #15 (Big West Match #2):
Cal State Northridge Matadors (11-3, 1-0 Big West) at UC Riverside Highlanders (1-12, 0-1 Big West)
Friday, Oct. 4, 2013 - 7:30 p.m. PDT
SRC Arena (1,922) - Riverside, CA
Live Stats: GoHighlanders.com
Streaming Video: BigWest.TV
In-game Twitter updates: @GoMatadors
MATCH #16 (Big West Match #3):
Cal State Northridge Matadors (11-3, 1-0 Big West) at Cal State Fullerton Titans (7-6, 0-1 Big West)
Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013 - 6:00 p.m. PDT
Titan Gym (4,000) - Fullerton, CA
Live Stats: FullertonTitans.com
Streaming Video: BigWest.TV
In-game Twitter updates: @GoMatadors
After a successful Big West home opener, Cal State Northridge (11-3, 1-0 Big West) heads back out on the road this week for conference matches at UC Riverside (1-12, 0-1 Big West) and Cal State Fullerton (7-6, 0-1 Big West). The Matadors meet the Highlanders Friday at 7:30 p.m. at UCR's SRC Arena and then take on the Titans the following night at 6:00 p.m. at Titan Gym. CSUN defeated UC Davis in five-sets to claim its conference home opener as well as keeping its home record unblemished in two matches.
NORTHRIDGE ON THE NET
Both matches this week will feature live stats and will be broadcast live on BigWest.TV. Saturday's match at Cal State Fullerton will also have live radio at FullertonTitans.com. All Matador home matches and conference road matches will be featured as part of the Big West live streaming package. BigWest.TV brings together live and on-demand video from each of the Big West's ten member institutions. Now in it's ninth year, BigWest.TV covers Big West sports, press conferences, interviews and features, including every home and conference contest in women's volleyball.
Five Cal State Northridge hitters had double figures in kills, led by sophomore Cieana Stinson's 19, as the Matadors came back to win the final two sets in a hard-fought 19-25, 26-24, 23-25, 25-18, 15-11 victory over visiting UC Davis in the conference opener for both teams Saturday at The Matadome. CSUN was nearly its own worst enemy as the Matadors committed 23 hitting errors and 16 service errors but had enough at the end to win their first Big West home opener since 2006. Stinson paced the Matador offense with a career-high 19 kills (.317) while senior Mahina Haina and junior Casey Hinger each added 15. Hinger hit .355 on 31 attacks while Haina hit .237 on 38 swings. Haina's fifth kill of the night gave her 1,000 kills in her CSUN career, just the ninth player in school history to reach the milestone. Sam Kaul (.562) and Natalie Allen (.276) each chipped in 10 kills with Allen also recording a team-high 13 digs, her team-leading seventh double-double of the 2013 campaign. Sydney Gedryn posted a season-high 60 assists to go with eight digs and five blocks as CSUN improved to 5-1 in five-set decisions this season.
• With Saturday's five-set victory over UC Davis, the Matadors won their first Big West Conference home opener since 2006 when CSUN defeated UC Riverside in straight sets. The last time a Matador team opened Big West play with three straight wins was also 2006 when CSUN defeated the Highlanders, Cal State Fullerton and Pacific to open conference play.
• Friday's match will be the 67th match all-time between the Matadors and Highlanders with CSUN dominating the series 47-19. The Matadors won both meetings last season (3-2 in Riverside, 3-0 in Northridge) and have now won six straight and 11 of the last 14 over UCR dating to 2006. Saturday's match will be the 38th match all-time between CSUN and Cal State Fullerton. The Matadors, who hold a 26-11 lead in the series, have won four straight in the series after winning 3-1 in Fullerton and 3-0 in The Matadome last season.
• The Matadors are receiving votes in the AVCA Top-25 poll for the fifth straight week. After defeating UC Davis in its only match last week, Cal State Northridge received eight points (ranked 37th) in the fifth poll of the 2013 season. On Sept. 9 the Matadors earned a season-high 14 points which is their highest point total since 1992. CSUN has now received votes in five consecutive AVCA Top-25 polls for the first time in school history.
HAINA EMPHATICALLY JOINS CSUN 1,000 KILLS CLUB
Needing just five kills to reach 1,000 for her Matador career, senior Mahina Haina pounded 15 against UC Davis to firmly announce her presence in the exclusive group of Cal State Northridge hitters. Not only did Haina become the ninth player in Matador history to reach the milestone but she also vaulted past Ana Kristich into eighth place all-time with 1,010. She now trails seventh-place Nancy Ma by just 20 kills. Haina would need 186 more kills this season to move into the top-five in career kills. Junior Natalie Allen is on track to become the next CSUN player to reach 1,000 career kills as she has 873 career kills after putting down 10 against UC Davis on Saturday. Allen leads the Matadors this season with 174 kills this season.
STINSON SHINES IN THE MATADOME
Sophomore Cieana Stinson has been a bright spot offensively for the Matadors all season but has been especially impressive in front of the home fans. In two home wins (Seattle, UC Davis), Stinson has connected for 32 kills (4.00 kps) while hitting .328 on 64 swings. Against the Aggies on Saturday, the outside hitter from Woodland Hills, Calif., put down a career-high 19 kills on a career-high 41 attacks. She had back-to-back kills late in the fifth set after UC Davis had pulled to within 12-11 which ultimately gave the Matadors their final margin of victory.
GEDRYN MOVES TO THE TOP OF THE BIG WEST
With a season-high 60 assists in Saturday's five-set win over UC Davis, senior setter Sydney Gedryn vaulted to the top of the conference in assists per set at 10.86. Gedryn's assist average also ranks 40th nationally as she has helped the Matador hitters to a .283 hitting clip through 13 matches. CSUN currently ranks second in the Big West and 16th nationally in hitting with 805 kills and 278 in 1,864 team attacks. Gedryn has been effective in her distribution this season as four different hitters are averaging at least 2.60 kills per set.
SOLID IN SEPTEMBER
The Matadors concluded another solid September with Saturday's win over UC Davis. CSUN won eight of its 11 matches during the month of September which followed a 3-0 record in August. Over the last two seasons, the Matadors have proved especially tough to beat in September, posting an 18-6 record (10-3 in 2012) largely in non-conference action.
Junior Sam Kaul has knocked down a career-high 10 kills twice in her last six matches including Saturday vs. UC Davis. Kaul, who also connected for 10 kills against UCLA on Sept. 13, has taken over as the team's leader in hitting percentage at .349 which ranks fifth in the Big West ... Junior Natalie Allen added another double-double to her ledger against UC Davis with 10 kills and a team-high 13 digs. Allen leads the Matadors in double-doubles this season with seven which gives her 32 in her CSUN career ... Somewhat surprising in the conference stats is that the Matadors do not have a player ranked among the top-10 in aces or the top-five in blocking. Year in and year out CSUN is typically ranked at or near the top of the conference in both categories ... Since losing the No. 24 Creighton and No. 11 UCLA in back-to-back matches (Sept. 13-14), the Matadors have now won five of six matches. The lone loss in that stretch was a four-set loss at then No. 3 Washington, which took over as the nation's top-ranked team this week. The three teams to defeat CSUN this season are a combined 28-6 heading into play this week.
Continuing the trend of two on the road, two at home, two on the road, the Matadors return to The Matadome next week to host Long Beach State (Oct. 10) and UC Irvine (Oct. 12) before traveling north to take on UC Santa Barbara (Oct. 18) and Cal Poly (Oct. 19). CSUN then returns for its longest homestand of the season with matches against No. 6 Hawai'i, Cal State Fullerton and UC Riverside.
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