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No. 22 Mustangs Defeat No. 9 UCLA 3-1 For Second Time Friday

No. 22 Mustangs Defeat No. 9 UCLA 3-1 For Second Time Friday

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — For the second straight night, the Cal Poly volleyball team defeated No. 9 UCLA 3-1(17-25, 25-23, 25-19, 25-23) Friday at Mott Athletics Center in front of a packed house. The No. 22 Mustangs (7-1) came back after losing the first set to win the next three and hand the Bruins (4-2) its second loss of the season.

The win is now the third all-time against UCLA with the last one coming Thursday night when Cal Poly took down the Bruins 3-1. It is now the second straight night beating a top-10 team, the first time that has happened in program history. The Mustangs have now tied a program record with 13 consecutive home wins dating back to 2016.

Cal Poly has now won six matches in a row, with its only loss coming against No. 20 Pittsburgh.

Junior Torrey Van Winden led all Mustangs with a season-high 26 kills while hitting .362, eight digs and four blocks. Senior Adlee Van Winden added 13 kills and seven digs. Senior libero Katherine Brouker had a team-high 24 digs. Freshman setter Avalon DeNecochea dished out 50 assists, one short of her career-high she set Thursday. Fellow freshman Meredith Phillips finished with eight kills and a team-high six blocks and sophomore Madilyn Mercer had seven kills and four blocks.

UCLA was able to get out to a quick start to begin the first set, taking a 7-3 lead. Cal Poly would then rally back to cut the lead to 10-8. Up 15-12, the Bruins would use a 7-3 run to take a 22-15 lead. From there, they would go on to score three out of the next five points to win the set 25-17. UCLA hit .394 in the first set to take a 1-0 lead.

The Mustangs would bounce back in the second set. This time they were the aggressors right out of the get, taking a 10-5 lead to begin the set. They would never relinquish the lead from that point, eventually extending the lead to 20-13. UCLA would make it close 10-4 run to eventually close the lead to 24-23. However, a Torrey Van Winden kill, one of her six for the set, would win the set for Cal Poly to tie it at 1-1. The Mustangs were able to hold UCLA to a .275 hitting percentage in the second set.

Similar to Thursday, the third set would be all Cal Poly. It would remain close early on in the set. Up 10-7, the Mustangs would go on a 10-3 run to take a 20-10 lead and force a Bruin timeout. Cal Poly would keep their foot on the gas pedal from there as the closest UCLA would get would be 24-19. An Adlee Van Winden kill would finish off the set for the Mustangs 25-19. Torrey Van Winden was in full attack mode in the third set, finishing with 10 kills while hitting .526 and no errors.

The fourth set would start by seeing both teams trading points with neither team refusing to give an inch. That would continue that way, until tied at 21, UCLA would score back-to-back points to take a 23-21 lead and force the Mustangs to call timeout. Following the timeout, Cal Poly would take over. A Torrey kill followed by a UCLA error would tie it at 23. Torrey would then put the exclamation point on the match with back-to-back kills to win the set 25-23 and the match 3-1.

As a team, the Mustangs finished with a season-high 10 blocks, six service aces and out-hit UCLA .248 to .246.

Cal Poly will now take its six-match winning streak to the North Texas Challenge next weekend where they will face Mississippi State, Wichita State and North Texas to wrap up its preseason before conference play begins.

The next home match will be September 18 at 5 p.m. against UC Davis to open Big West play.