The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

Got a tip? Have something you need to tell us? Contact the Sundial

Loading Recent Classifieds...

CSUN has a chance this weekend

Caption Needed
In game one of a three game homestand No. 10 Angela Hupp and the Matadors get ready for the serve to UC Irvine, Wednesday night. Photo Caption: Alan Fassonaki / Staff Photographer

It’s the battle of the Three Musketeers this weekend at the Matadome, only instead of being the pride of the French justice force, the women’s volleyball team will be fighting to see who ends up on top—or in this case, the bottom of the Big West standings.

Northridge (4-12, 0-3 Big West) will duke it out against the other two teams that make up the three lowest ranked teams in the Big West, Cal Poly and UC Riverside, closing out their three-game homestand.

The Matadors, listed eighth in the Big West, are coming off a hard-fought four-set loss to No. 23 Irvine and are looking to build off their newfound momentum and team cohesiveness.

“Just keeping the same momentum and keeping up our energy and using it in the game,” said CSUN outside hitter Lynda Morales about what it will take for the Matadors to be successful.

Morales was recently moved from the middle blocker to the right-side hitter position, and outside hitter Angela Hupp is being utilized as a second setter. This re-positioning has opened up the Matador offense, adding one more hitter in each rotation.

This new line-up places more on Hupp’s already weighted shoulders. Hupp recorded her second triple-double during the Irvine match and was recently inaugurated as the eighth Northridge player in women’s volleyball history to ever reach 1,000 career kills.

“I looked at the stats and was like ‘okay’,” Hupp said about her chart-climbing statistics. “But if I think about it too much I start to do poorly. I try to think about what I’m going to do with the next point (instead).”

The Matadors will be put to the test when they play the Cal Poly Mustangs (5-12, 1-3 Big West) Friday, the highest of the lowest Big West teams. The Mustangs were recently swept by Long Beach and have their lone conference win against Riverside.

Cal Poly head coach Jon Stevenson has high hopes for the future of his team. Stevenson, in his fourth year at Cal Poly, started five freshmen, one sophomore and one junior in the match against heavily experienced Long Beach.

“We’re extraordinarily young,” Stevenson said about the team’s strengths. “The key to our team is we keep getting better. We just need to learn to play together and at a Div. I level…(there’s) potential to be an NCAA tournament team.”

Freshmen outside hitter Megan McConnell leads the Mustangs in kills with 165, and aces with 12. Junior Middle blocker Dominique Olowolafe boasts 136 kills for the season and a team-leading 38 blocks.

“I expect a tough match at CSUN,” Stevenson said. “I have a lot of respect for coach Stork. He’s had excellent teams and he’s an excellent coach. I expect it to be a well-contested match.”

Saturday night will see Northridge face off against the Highlanders of UC Riverside (1-12, 0-4 Big West). Riverside has not won a match since a five-set victory over Sacramento State in early September.

Riverside head coach Ron Larsen doesn’t seem phased by the team’s current Big West standing.

“I expect (CSUN) to be well-coached and a good blocking team,” Larsen said. “They have a couple girls who can get on the ball…we have to be able to serve and pass at the same level as CSUN in order to (compete).”

Riverside has brought back senior outside hitter Dominique Cowling to lead the Highlanders in kills with 169 and 13 aces. Senior setter Brittney Murrey has assisted 341 kills and red shirt freshmen Bianca Endersby leads with 58 total blocks.

Northridge head coach Jeff Stork stays optimistic about the team’s ability to perform well and the success of the new 6-2 offense, but has yet to predict a win for the Matadors.

“Every match is a challenge for us…we’re more concerned with how we develop as a team,” Stork said about playing lower-standing teams in the conference.

More to Discover