Rebels Get Back Up On That Horse After Loss
Sept. 23, 2007
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The UNLV volleyball team (11-2) jumped out of conference Sunday for its final non-conference match of the season. The Rebels traveled to Santa Clara, Calif., and defeated the Santa Clara Broncos (8-7) in sweeping fashion by a 3-0 margin (30-24, 30-26, 30-16). The Rebels were led by double-doubles notched by Maria Aladjova and Melody Nua.
The victory puts UNLV back on the winning side of the ledger after having its nine-match winning streak snapped in a Mountain West Conference contest at San Diego State on Friday night. The Rebels have now won 10 of their last 11 matches.
The win over SCU gives UNLV a 9-1 mark in non-conference matches this season. The .900 winning percentage in these 10 matches is the best in the modern-era of the UNLV volleyball program.
The Rebels offense fired on all cylinders as the attackers notched a .339 hitting percentage in the match. UNLV improved in each game, as the attackers began with a .286 tally in the first game before increasing to .362 in the second and .387 in the third.
Santa Clara's offense played the opposite of UNLV's. The Broncos' hitting percentages stayed below the .200 barrier. They began with a .170 figure in the first stanza and pushed it to .190 in the second, but dropped to a lowly -.028 in the final game.
Aladjova led the Rebels offensively with her third 20-kill performance of the season and second in as many games. She combined her 20 kills with 10 digs to complete her 11th double-double of the year. In 43 total attempts, she only amassed four errors to hit for a .372 average. She added an ace and pitched in two assisted blocks, as well.
With her 20 kills combined with her previous 1,335 the total gives her 1,355 for her career. Her career kills now rank as the most in the UNLV history books. She surpassed Leiana Oswald's (2000-03) total of 1,350.
Nua picked up her fourth double-double of the year. She tossed up a match-high 46 assists and dug out 12 Bronco attacks. Besides helping out with all but seven of the team's 53 assists, she threw down two kills of her own.
Erin Greenwood joined Aladjova in the double-digit kill category, as she dropped in 10 of her own. Greenwood hit .286 in the match with only four errors in 21 attempts. At the net, she blocked four shots (one solo).
Brittani Lumsden, who has slowly been working her way back into the lineup, hit for a .333 average on 18 attempts. Lumsden dropped in a season-high seven kills with only one error. On the defensive side of the ball, she totaled eight digs.
Santa Clara was led by a double-double by Crystal Matich, who combined a team-high 32 assists and 10 digs for the feat. Krista Kelley led the Broncos in kills with 12, while Caroline Walters was tops on her squad in digs with 13.
Once the Rebels took their first lead in all three games they controlled the pace and wound up winning each frame.
In game one, SCU held a 2-1 edge to start the game, but watched UNLV win six straight points for a 7-2 cushion. From that point on the Rebels never looked back and ranged between holding four and five point leads en route to the six-point final margin at 30-24.
UNLV opened the second game with a 2-0 lead and never trailed, although SCU stayed within range and even tied the game up at 16-16. After the tie, the Rebels rattled off three straight scores to take hold of the game.
Game three turned into a rout by UNLV. With the game tied 4-4, UNLV scored five straight to take a 9-4 lead. Following SCU winning its fifth point, UNLV reeled off nine of the next 13 points to increase its lead to 18-9. The Rebels wound up winning the 12 of the final 17 points to take the 30-16 win.
UNLV returns to action next Saturday, Sept. 29 (1:00 pm MT) with a trip to Fort Collins, Colo. The Rebels jump back into Mountain West Conference action with a match versus the Colorado State Rams.