September 18, 2009

Matadors Drop Home Opener to Fresno State in Five Sets

Sept. 18, 2009

Final Stats

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - Cal State Northridge dropped its home opener in five sets on Friday as Fresno State overcame a two sets to one defecit to deal the Matadors their eighth loss in 11 matches to start the season. Set scores on Friday were 22-25, 25-23, 23-25, 26-24, 15-8 in front of 155 at The Matadome.

Northridge (3-8) was led by senior Angela Hupp's match-high 18 kills (.153) while freshman Britney Graff added 17 (.235) and junior Brittany Williams chipped in 15 (.429). Hupp also added 13 digs while Graff had two of the Matadors' six aces. The backcourt duo of Monica McFarland and Karina Woehrstein combined for 40 digs in the loss.

The Matadors took a pair of five-point leads in the opening set as Northridge led 11-6 and 13-8 only to see the Bulldogs come back to take an 18-17 lead on a Lacey Gera service ace. But back-to-back kills from Williams put Northridge back in front to stay at 19-18. Fresno State got even on a Hupp service error but the Matadors outscored the Bulldogs 6-3 down the stretch to claim the 25-22 win.

After hitting just .094 in set one, the Bulldogs bounced back to hit .333 in set two compared to .385 for the Matadors. Northridge led early 6-4 but would not lead again. The Matadors overcame a 17-12 defecit to even the score at 21-21 following a Sam Orlandini-Lynda Morales co-block. A Morales kill evened the set again at 22-22 but Northridge score just once more and dropped the set 25-23.

The Matadors opened up a 16-11 lead in set three and then held on late to take the frame 25-23. After hitting .385 in set two, Northridge hit steadily worse as the match wore on.

The Matadors looked to have the match in hand as they bolted out to a 10-2 lead in the fourth set. But a 17-9 Bulldog run pulled Fresno State even at 19-19 following a Lauren Berger kill. A Hupp kill gave Northridge its final lead at 22-21 and Fresno State tallied the final two points after the Matadors evened the set at 24-24.

The decisive fifth set was all Fresno State as the Bulldogs scored the first seven points and ultimately opened up an insurmountable 12-2 cushion. A late rally pulled the Matadors within 14-8 but a Baylee Platt kill on match point sent the Matadors to defeat in their home opener.

Gera (.282) and Berger (.343) led Fresno State with 16 kills apiece while Paltt chipped in 11 off the bench and Brianna Clarke added 10.

Cal State Northridge wraps up its brief two-match homestand on Saturday as the Matadors host Portland at 7 p.m. The match will be free to all kids 12 and under.

- GO MATADORS -