Stanford Rolls Past Arizona, 3-0

11/8/2008

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TUSCON, Ariz. - Senior middle blocker Foluke Akinradewo ripped 16 kills, lifting the No. 2 Stanford women's volleyball team to a sweep of Arizona tonight in Tucson, Ariz. The 25-23, 25-19, 25-16 victory gave Stanford its sixth consecutive win and marked the team's 17th sweep of the year.

Stanford improves to 21-3 overall with a league-leading 12-1 mark in the Pac-10. Arizona drops to 14-9 overall and 4-7 in conference play.

Senior Cynthia Barboza also had a memorable night, pounding her 1,500th career kill in the second set. She is the tenth player in school history to accomplish the feat, the 37th in conference history and joins Akinradewo as the only two active players in the Pac-10 with 1,500 to their names. Barboza finished with 10 kills, marking her seventh consecutive match in double figures.

Akinradewo's 16 kills came on just 23 swings (.652) while fellow middle blocker Janet Okogbaa was 8-for-12 (.583). Each also had four blocks on the night, as did sophomore setter Cassidy Lichtman. Sophomore libero Gabi Ailes led the team with 12 digs.

Arizona was led by senior opposite hitter Randy Goodenough, who tallied 13 kills on the night.

Stanford hit .341, reaching the .300 plateau for the 14th time in the last 18 matches. Arizona was the 15th opponent this year to hit below .200 against the Cardinal (.160).

Stanford ran off a 7-2 run early in the first set, using two of the night's 10 blocks to take a quick 8-4 lead. The Wildcats raced back, however, using four consecutive points to tie at nine, then managed another three in a row to take the lead at 12-11. At the media break, Stanford was still at a 15-13 disadvantage. Barboza paced Stanford on a 5-1 run out of the timeout, scoring a kill and a solo block before stepping back to serve three straight points. Barboza's effort put Stanford up 18-17, but the Wildcats took five of the next six points to spur a Cardinal timeout at 22-19. Akinradewo simply took control of the front row soon after however, pounding three consecutive kills to lead a powerful 5-0 Cardinal run to set point. After a kill by Jacy Norton finally ended the run, a miscommunication on a Wildcat set gave Stanford the win, 25-23. Stanford hit .188 to Arizona's .158 in the opening set, with just 12 kills and six errors. Barboza, Akinradewo and Okogbaa each had four kills for the Cardinal.

After falling behind 4-1 in the second set, Akinradewo brought Stanford back to tie at 4-4 with her fifth kill and second block of the night. Stanford pushed out to a lead at 8-7 on a kill by Okogbaa, but Arizona put together a 4-1 run to take an 11-9 lead. That lead held until Barboza slammed back-to-back kills to tie things at 15. After another brief exchange, sophomore outside hitter Alix Klineman ended her early drought with three critical kills in a 9-2 come-from-behind run to the finish. The Cardinal took its first lead since 8-7 at 18-17 and took a 22-18 lead on Klineman's third kill. An Arizona attack sailed out of bounds for set point at 24-19, and Akinradewo teamed up with Lichtman for the clinching block, 25-19. Stanford hit .406 in the second set to Arizona's .171 and was led by Akinradewo's five kills.

Stanford was on fire from the start of the third set, using two more kills by Akinradewo and a couple of key plays by Okogbaa to take a 9-3 lead out of the gates. Stanford saw its lead slip to three at 10-7, but rolled from there. A 4-0 run capped by a Klineman kill made it 14-7, and Barboza picked up a kill and a block in a 3-0 run soon after that widened the gap to 19-10. Stanford made its way easily to the finish from there, taking set point on a block by Akinradewo and Lichtman, 24-15. Fittingly, Akinradewo pounded her 16th kill to finish off the win, 25-16. Stanford hit a match-high .458 in the third set compared to a .148 mark by Arizona. Akinradewo had seven kills in the clinching third set.

Next up for Stanford is a much-anticipated rematch with sixth-ranked California on Friday night in Berkeley. The Cardinal will be looking to avenge an Oct. 19 loss to the rival Golden Bears and move one step closer to defending its back-to-back Pac-10 titles. First serve is set for 7 p.m. at Haas Pavilion, with live television coverage by Comcast SportsNet West.

Article courtesy of Stanford athletics.

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