November 13, 2009

Matadors Knock Off Conference-Leading Long Beach State in Five Sets

Nov. 13, 2009

Final Stats

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - Britney Graff had a double-double of 16 kills and 10 digs while Lynda Morales added 14 kills and Puneet Pataria chipped in 13 as Cal State Northridge knocked off Long Beach State 25-23, 18-25, 17-25, 25-22, 18-16 Friday at The Matadome.

The Matadors' five-set win over the 49ers is the second time in the last three matches that Northridge has knocked off Long Beach State. The Matadors (8-19, 4-9 Big West) snap a five-match skid while dealing the conference-leading 49ers (16-7, 9-4) a setback in the quest for the Big West crown.

Graff's team-high 16 kills is one shy of the career-high 17 she put down against Fresno State on Sept. 18. By adding 10 digs, she posted the eighth double-double of her freshman season. Morales added 14 kills (.321) and six blocks while Pataria chipped in a season-high 13 kills (.273). Matador setter Angela Hupp recorded 44 assists, nine digs and five blocks and libero Monica McFarland had a match-high 19 digs in the win.

The Matadors won a tight first set as neither team led by more than two points. Long Beach took a 14-12 lead when Ashley Lee and Brittney Herzog teamed up to block Janet Alvarado. The 49ers also led 23-21 after Morales' attack went long before a pair of Long Beach hitting errors pulled Northridge even at 23-23. Another 49er hitting miscue followed by an Alvarado kill capped a 4-0 run as the Matadors captued set one 25-23.

Sets two and three were similar as Long Beach broke open both sets with a run midway through. With the score knotted 9-9 in the second set, the 49ers claimed nine of the next 11 points to take an insurmountable 18-11 lead. In the third set, the teams battled to a 14-14 tie when Long Beach mounted a 9-2 run to erase any doubt on its way to the 25-17 win.

After opening up a 5-1 lead in set four, the teams traded the lead until a kill by Herzog evened things at 22-22. But a Morales kill followed by a Siara Grayson ace and a Naomi Washington hitting error sent the match to a decisive fifth set.

Set five was a see-saw battle that saw 15 ties and seven lead changes. With the score tied 13-13, a co-block from Chelsea Johnson and Tela Burnett gave the Matadors match point at 14-13. But Caitlin Ledoux answered with back-to-back kills giving the 49ers a swing at the match at 15-14. Johnson and Burnett teamed up to block Ledoux before Ledoux responded again giving Long Beach its second match point at 16-15. Pataria then came up with her biggest kill of the match tying the score for the final time at 16-16. Ledoux then hit long and Morales put away a Karina Woehrstein assist and the Matadors had the win in five sets.

Ledoux wound up with a match-high 21 kills (.152) to lead the 49ers. Washington added 18 (.209) and Herzog chipped in 11 (.240).

Cal State Northridge wraps up the home portion of the 2009 schedule on Saturday as the Matadors host Cal State Fullerton at 7 p.m. Prior the match, Northridge will honor seniors Angela Hupp and Tela Burnett.

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