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Notes:Volleyball Makes Midwest Trip for NCAA Tournament
Release Date: 12/04/2013
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Oregon vs. Miami
When Friday, Dec. 6 - 2:30 p.m. PT
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This Week: The Oregon volleyball team (19-11, 12-8 Pac-12) enter the NCAA Tournament with on a five-match winning streak and face Miami (19-11, 12-8 ACC), Friday at 2:30 p.m. PT. The match will be streamed live on

About the Hurricanes: Oregon has never faced Miami (19-11, 12-8) in the program’s history. The Hurricanes finished fourth in the ACC, a conference which received four tournament bids, and will head to the dance for its fifth-straight season. Last year, the Hurricanes lost to College of Charleston during a five-set first-round matchup. Savanah Leaf leads the team with 3.83 kills/set but the Hurricanes have four other hitters averaging over 2.00 kills/set. The well-balanced offense runs through junior setter Blair Fuentez who is averaging 10.05 assists/set. Miami has had a significant home court advantage where it is 9-3 compared to 7-7 on the road. However the Canes are 3-1 in neutral matches.

Conference/National Rankings: Oregon moved back into the AVCA poll this week, ranking 25th. The Ducks took a four-week hiatus from the poll but have been receiving votes all season.

As of the Dec. 2, rankings Liz Brenner ranks first in the Pac-12 with a kills per set average of 4.57, a tally that ranks 10th in the nation. Brenner is also third in the conference and 17th in the nation in points/set (4.94).

As a team, Oregon leads the conference in assists/set (13.89), is second in digs/set (16.93) and third in kills/set (14.63). The assists/set mark ranks fifth and nation while the team is 11th in kills and 29th in digs.

All-Conference Awards: Junior Liz Brenner was named to the All-Pac-12 Team, Tuesday, leading a group of four Oregon volleyball players who earned all-conference honors.

Seniors Lauren Plum and Ariana Williams were selected as Honorable Mention All-Pac-12 while newcomer Amanda Benson was tabbed as part of the All-Freshman Team.

Oregon’s NCAA Résumé: Oregon has made the tournament seven of the past eight seasons including the last three. The Ducks are 10-6 in the NCAA Tournament under head coach Jim Moore after a run to the National Championship last season. It is the 11th overall NCAA Tournament appearance for Oregon.

Oregon is a combined 4-0 against the ACC and Big 10 in the NCAA Tournament with two wins against each conference.

Brenner Takes Aim: Liz Brenner has put up big numbers in points and kills all season but has recently been doing it more efficiently. After hitting .200 in the months of September and October, the All-American upped her average to .289 in December.

Oregon Vs. Ranked Opponents: Oregon is 3-7 against ranked opponents this season, playing some of the nation’s finest. The Ducks most recently defeated No. 20 California in straight sets, Nov. 15 in Eugene.

In all, 10 of the 21 schools on Oregon’s schedule this season have been ranked in the AVCA top 25 at some point this season.

Playing When It Counts: Oregon has made the NCAA Tournament seven of the last eight seasons and compiled a 10-6 record in those appearances. Part of that success has been due to Oregon’s momentum late in the season. The Ducks started some momentum against this season with a 7-3 mark in their last 10 matches, making it the third-consecutive year the Ducks have ended with that record.

Brenner Leading the Pac: While Liz Brenner is one of the nation’s leaders in kills/set, her average is even higher while playing in the nation’s toughest conference. Brenner is averaging 4.97 kills/set and 5.28 points/set in Pac-12 matches.

Ducks Don’t Look Back: Oregon is 16-0 when they win the first set of matches this season. In 12 of those matches, the Ducks won in straight sets.

Double-Double Machine: Liz Brenner has recorded 15 double-doubles this season, third-most in the conference. Brenner has made the double-double a habit as of late, accomplishing the feat in 10 of the last 12 matches.

Digging Gold: Freshman Amanda Benson made her debut in Oregon’s single-season record book and now holds the freshman record for digs in a season with 473 passing Katie Swoboda who dug 448 attack attempts in 2005. Benson’s mark is the sixth-highest by any player in Oregon history, only 27 digs away from jumping to fifth (Haley Jacob – 500).

Bair’s Brains and Shellsy’s Smarts: Shellsy Ashen and Bethany Bair received Pac-12 All-Academic honorable mentions. Ashen, a junior, currently holds a 3.38 GPA while majoring in marine biology. Bair, a senior, is pursuing a degree in sociology with a GPA of 3.42.

High-Scoring Duo: Liz Brenner eclipsed teammate Ariana Williams on the career points list this season. Brenner (1,347.5) is currently sixth all-time, 43.5 points behind Katherine Fischer in fifth. Williams (1,328.0) is seventh.

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