When: 7 PM PT
TV/Online: Pac-12 Networks (online for subscribers)
Score update: Cal Volleyball twitter (@CalVolleyball)
Not (yet) a fan of volleyball? Read my volleyball primer/Cal Volleyball preview.
After being a conference and national title contender in the last 4 years (okay, more like 3.5 until midseason last year), Cal Volleyball's 2012 season has been a disappointment. Plagued by early (and continuing) injuries, the Bears' play this year have been inconsistent to say the least. More so than Cal football, however, Cal Volleyball have shown flashes of brilliance at times (maybe I'm reading too much into the Bears beating a top 10 Hawaii team on the road) this season to allow Cal fans to be hopeful (particularly with Correy Johnson getting stronger now after opening the season injured). In the next two weeks at home, Cal faces huge tests (but also opportunities) in welcoming the current best of the conference to Haas pavilion (No. 2 Oregon this week and then No.5 and No.6 USC and UCLA next week).
Starting on Wednesday night, Cal takes on No.2 and undefeated Oregon Ducks who are currently having the best season in program history . Oregon have yet to drop a set in conference yet and have only lost 3 sets all season.
More about Oregon (from Cal Athletics)
- Oregon is sparked by junior setter Lauren Plum, an All-Pac-12 selection last season who currently leads the nation in assists with 12.88 per set. The Ducks also have the conference leader in hitting percentage (Ariana Williams - .444) and aces (Katherine Fischer - .40/set).
- Outside hitter Alaina Bergsma, a third team AVCA All-American last season, ranks seconds in the Pac-12 and eighth nationally with 4.71 kills per set.
Last Week in Cal Volleyball:
Cal was consistently inconsistent in the last week of action, at the Arizona schools. After a loss in 3 (poorly played) sets to Arizona State and an additional bad opening set, blowing a decent late lead to Arizona to lose set 1, Bears regrouped and won the next 3 sets convincingly with great hitting.
Cal had three players hit over the .500 mark - Correy Johnson 15 kills, .583 percentage; Christina Higgins 10 kills, .714 percentage; Kat Brown 9 kills, .562 percentage. Shannon Hawari also had nine kills while hitting .368. The Bears hit .364 as a team, their second-highest mark of the season and best since the season-opener against Delaware.
With that the current statistical leaders for the Bears are:
Kills: Adrienne Gehan - 178 (3.36/set)
Hitting Percentage: Shannon Hawari - .357 (8th in Pac-12)
Assists: Joan Caloiaro - 490 (9.61/set) (7th in Pac-12 for assists per set)
Aces: Nikki Gombar - 12 (0.23/set)
Blocks: Kat Brown - 69 (1.30/set) (6th in Pac-12 for blocks per set)
Digs: Mary McKennon - 187 (3.53/set) (9th in Pac-12 for digs per set)