EUGENE, Ore. – No. 20 Oregon volleyball (12-6, 5-3 Pac-12) will look to keep its momentum from a weekend sweep going when it travels to No. 6 Stanford (13-4, 6-2) and California (11-6, 4-4) this week. The Ducks will take on the Cardinal, Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. and the Bears, Friday at 6 p.m., both on the Pac-12 Networks.
About the No. 6 Cardinal: Stanford is 13-4 this season and coming off a five-set loss at Washington, Sunday. The Cardianl’s only other losses this season have come against Florida, Texas and USC, each of which are currently in the top five of the AVCA poll. The statistics back up Stanford’s ranking as the team is third in the nation in hitting percentage (.319) and second in blocks (3.01/set). Carly Wopat leads the squad with 3.00 kills/set and a .480 hitting mark, but is followed almost immediately by a quartet of teammates averaging 2.38 kills/set or more. On the defensive end, both Wopat and Inky Ajanaku lead the blocking efforts with 1.38 and 1.36 blocks/set. Not only with the Ducks have to face a talented team, but a team that is undefeated (6-0) at home.
About the Bears: After starting the season with seven-straight wins, California has come hurtling back down to earth with a 4-6 record in its last 10 matches. The offense has been funneled through Adrienne Gehan who leads the team with 4.39 kills/set and taking 251 more attempts than the next hitter. The high-powered offense is 14th in the nation in kills/set and 15th in hitting percentage, but falls in the defensive categories of digging and blocking ranking, fifth and eighth in the Pac-12, respectively.
Conference/National Rankings: Oregon moved up one spot to No. 20 in the latest AVCA Coaches’ Poll Monday, Oct. 14. The team’s 38-consecutive weeks in the top 25 is the 11th-longest active streak in the nation. The last time the Ducks were not ranked was Aug. 11, 2011 in the 2011 preseason poll.
As of the Oct. 20 rankings, Lauren Plum is third in the Pac-12 and is 12th in the nation in assists per set with 11.54.
Liz Brenner ranks fourth in the Pac-12 kills with a kills per set average of 4.33, a tally that ranks 21st in the nation. Brenner is also fourth in the Pac-12 and 27th nationally in points per set with 4.75.
Ariana Williams’ .393 hitting mark is fourth in the nation and 33rd in the country.
As a team, Oregon leads the Pac-12 in kills/set (14.63) and assist/set (13.86), both of which are top-10 NCAA marks.
Brenner Leading the Pac: Liz Brenner has a Pac-12-best 5.00 kills per set and 5.46 points per set in conference matches this season. Madi Kingdon is behind Brenner in both categories with 4.59 and 5.18, respectively.
Ducks Don’t Look Back: Oregon is 10-0 when they win the first set of matches this season. In each of those 10 wins, the Ducks won in straight sets. Oregon has come back in two matches after losing the first set.
1,000 Kills for Brenner: Liz Brenner surpassed 1,000 kills during her last match against Utah. The junior now has 1,001 kills but is still more than 200 kills outside Oregon’s career top 10.
1,000 Point Club: Senior Ariana Williams reached the 1,000-point threshold earlier this season at Michigan State and is the eighth person in Oregon history to do so. Gorana Maricic sits ahead of Williams (1,161.5) in seventh on the all-time career points list with 1,217.
Liz Brenner joined Williams at 1,000 points, in the Ducks’ match at Arizona. The junior has tallied 1,104.5 points during her career, good enough for ninth on the all-time list behind Williams.
What’s Next: The Ducks are home next Friday and Sunday as they begin the second half of the Pac-12 schedule, facing Arizona State and Arizona.