March 7, 2012

Matadors Open Three-Match Non-Conference Stretch Wednesday Against Ball State

MATCH #17:

Ball State Cardinals (10-5) at No. 12 Northridge Matadors (6-10)

Wednesday, Mar. 7, 2012 - 7:00 p.m. PST
The Matadome (1,600) - Northridge, Calif.
Live Stats: Gametracker (GoMatadors.com)
Streaming Video: none
Audio: none
In-game Twitter updates: @GoMatadors


MATCH #18:

No. 15 Loyola Ramblers (10-8) at No. 12 Northridge Matadors (6-10)

Friday, Mar. 9, 2012 - 7:00 p.m. PST
The Matadome (1,600) - Northridge, Calif.
Live Stats: Gametracker (GoMatadors.com)
Streaming Video: none
Audio: none
In-game Twitter updates: @GoMatadors


MATCH #19:

Harvard Crimson (11-2) at No. 12 Northridge Matadors (6-10)

Saturday, Mar. 10, 2012 - 7:00 p.m. PST
The Matadome (1,600) - Northridge, Calif.
Live Stats: Gametracker (GoMatadors.com)
Streaming Video: none
Audio: none
In-game Twitter updates: @GoMatadors

Weekly Match Notes (PDF)


FOR STARTERS

Cal State Northridge (6-10, 4-8 MPSF) takes a week-long break from MPSF play as the 12th-ranked Matadors host Ball State (10-5) Wednesday in the first of three non-conference matches. Northridge will also entertain No. 15 Loyola-Chicago (10-8) followed by a Saturday match against Harvard (11-2). The Matadors' current nine-match homestand is the longest of the season and began with a 3-2 win over No. 11 UCSB before Northridge fell in straight sets to top-ranked UCLA.

NORTHRIDGE ON THE NET

Follow Cal State Matador volleyball online at the official online home of Cal State Northridge athletics, www.GoMatadors.com. All Matador home matches and a majority of road matches will feature live stats via Gametracker. In addition, select home and road matches will be broadcast live with Mark Schuermann handling the play-by-play and Alex Jones providing analysis. Fans can also follow the Matadors at Twitter.com/gomatadors and YouTube.com/northridgeathletics. Fans can also view and print the Matadors 2012 Record Book online at GoMatadors.com. The guide features statistics and a complete men's volleyball history.

MATADORS JUMP TWO SPOTS TO 12TH IN AVCA POLL

After defeating No. 11 UC Santa Barbara in five and falling to top-ranked UCLA last week, Cal State Northridge moved up two spots to 12th in this week's AVCA Coaches Top-15 Poll released Mar. 5. The Matadors earned 64 points in this week's poll, up 24 points from last week's poll. Northridge, which had been ranked in the AVCA Top-15 for 155 consecutive weeks prior to Feb. 7, 2011, has now been ranked in all 10 polls this season. UCLA (17-2), remained in the top spot in this week's poll garnering 14 first place votes and 268 total points. UC Irvine (14-3), which picked up one first-place vote, moved past Stanford (13-4) which is followed by USC (10-4) and BYU (13-4). Penn State (13-1) is sixth this week followed by Lewis (14-3), Long Beach State (9-8), Ohio State (13-6) and Pepperdine (8-8). This week's top-15 is filled out by Pacific (6-12), the Matadors (6-10), UC Santa Barbara (5-11), Hawai'i (6-10) and Northridge's Friday opponent, Loyola-Chicago (10-8).

MATADORS THIS WEEK

The Matadors opened their nine-match homestand on a winning note defeating No. 11 UCSB in five before dropping a straight set decision to top-ranked UCLA.  By splitting the two matches last week, Northridge is now 4-2 on the home floor this season.  This week, the Matadors take a week-long break in the conference schedule to host a trio of non-conference opponents in Ball State, No. 15 Loyola-Chicago and Harvard. Ball State comes into Wednesday's match at 10-5 and winners of five of its last six matches. The Cardinals only loss over the last month was a 3-0 setback at No. 8 Ohio State on Feb. 17. 15th-ranked Loyola-Chicago, which travels to Cal Baptist on Wednesday, is 10-8 heading into this week's matches. The Matadors defeated the Ramblers in straight sets at the UCSB Asics Invitational in January behind 10 kills from Cory Wagner. Harvard has won five straight, including a five-set win at Princeton on Mar. 3, heading to Northridge on Saturday. The Crimson will also play at Pepperdine and Cal Baptist on their West Coast trip.

NORTHRIDGE VS. NON-CONFERENCE FOES

Since 2000, the Matadors are an impressive 72-23 (.758) in non-conference matches. Northridge has hosted 13 non-MPSF squads in The Matadome since 2007 and is a  near-perfect 12-1 in those matches with the only blemish coming against Loyola-Chicago last season. Prior to that, the last time Northridge dropped a non-conference match at home was Mar. 6, 2000 when Lewis defeated the Matadors 3-1.  

STATISTICAL ANOMALY IN UCSB MATCH

Although the Matadors set several team match season-highs in the win over No. 11 UC Santa Barbara, Northridge was out-performed in all three of the main statistical categories. The Gauchos had 66 kills to Northridge's 63, had 62 digs to the Matadors' 57 and had a 17.5-12.5 edge in team blocking. UCSB also out-pointed the Matadors 86.5 to 85.5 but fell in five sets. Northridge did set team season-highs in kills (63), assists (60), digs (57) and aces (10).

CONDRON DIGS IN

The Matadors have used the new rule utilizing two liberos for much of the 2012 season. Redshirt freshmen Charlie Condron and Sina Aghassy have each seen significant court time with the new alignment with Aghassy starting 10 matches at libero with Condron earning starts in the other six. Heading into last weekend's matches, Aghassy was averaging a team-best 1.78 digs per game with 64 digs in 36 sets. Condron ranked second averaging 1.52 dpg with 35 digs in 23 sets played. Aghassy earned the start against UCSB and struggled in the opening set and was replaced by Condron who went on to record a career-high 20 digs in the Matadors' 3-2 win. Condron then earned the start against UCLA and scooped up another 12 digs to give him 32 digs in two matches and a team-high 67 for the season.

NORTHRIDGE NOTES

Condron's 20 digs against UCSB was the most by a Matador libero since Ali'i Keohohou posted 21 against Stanford on Feb. 20, 2009. The Northridge record in the rally scoring era was set by Doug English who had 26 digs against UCLA in 2003 ... The win over UCSB was the first this season by the Matadors when they have been out-hit (percentage-wise) by an opponent ... Senior Matt Stork has moved into sixth on the all-time service ace list with 90. Only Eckhard Waler (183), Eric Vance (181), Kevin McKniff (121), Mike Gaudino (114) and Cary Hanson (93) have more in the Matadors' rally scoring years (2001-present).

CAMPBELL PICKS UP CAREER WIN #225

Having become Cal State Northridge men's volleyball's all-time winningest coach in 2010, Jeff Campbell picked up the latest milestone win of his 15-year Matador career. Northridge's 3-0 win at UC San Diego on Feb. 24 gave the Matador boss his 225th career victory. Campbell, who now has a career record of 226-199 (.532), reached the 150 and 200 career wins over the last four seasons and now sets his sights on his 250th career win. Currently, the third-longest tenured head coach at Cal State Northridge (men's golf coach Jim Bracken is in his 26th season & men's basketball head coach Bobby Braswell is in his 16th season) Campbell has posted double figure win totals in 12 of his 14 previous seasons on the bench and notched a career-best 24 wins in 2009.
UP NEXTFollowing MPSF matches against UC Santa Barbara and UCLA this week, the Matadors will take a three-match non-conference break. Ball State, Loyola-Chicago and Harvard will come to the west coast for matches from Mar. 7-10.

- GO MATADORS -

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