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CSUN women’s volleyball seeks to continue winning ways on road

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Matador Natalie Allen (9) tries to spike the ball past UC Irvine’s outside hitter Juliane Piggott (22) in a game at the Matadome. Photo Credit:Patrick Dilanchian/ Contributing Photographer

CSUN looks to continue its momentum on the road when it takes on Long Beach State on Thursday and UC Irvine on Saturday.
The Matadors (12-16; 4-8 Big West) last game was a win on the road against UC Riverside 3-1 (25-27, 25-20, 27-25, 30-28).

With the win against UC Riverside, the Matadors matched last season’s win total in Big West play. The Matadors have also surpassed last season’s overall wins (10) with 12 for the season. This is the best record the Matadors have had since going 13-18 in 2007.

The final stretch for the Matadors will be a tough one, with two games against Long Beach State and one game against first place Cal State Fullerton in the last game of the season.

This will be the first time this season the Matadors face Long Beach State (19-6; 9-3 Big West). The Matadors had some success against the 49ers last season splitting the two games. In the first mach up last season, Northridge lost in three straight sets. In the second match, CSUN beat the 49ers three sets to two.

Long Beach State is having a good season. The 49ers are in second place in the Big West Conference behind Cal State Fullerton. They are coming in to this match with three straight wins. All three wins have come against conference opponents with the last one coming against Pacific. Long Beach State is 10-2 in home games this season. The first home loss came against San Diego in September and the second home loss came against Cal Poly two weeks ago.

Junior outside hitter Caitlin Ledoux was named Big West Player of the Week. During the week she averaged 19 kills and 11 digs.  This is the second time Ledoux has won this award this season and it is her fourth time being named player of the week in her career.  During the 49er win streak, Ledoux had eight kills, 15 kills and 23 kills.  Ledoux is the eighth player in 49er history to be named Big West Player of the Year.

Freshman middle blocker Haleigh Hampton leads the 49ers and the Big West Conference in blocks with a total of 154.  Hampton averages 1.59 blocks per set. As a team, Long Beach State is leading the conference in blocks with 286 and is averaging 2.95 blocks per set. The 49ers are also leading the conference in opponent hitting percentages. Long Beach State’s opponents are averaging a .155 hitting percentage.

After one day off, the Matadors travel to Irvine to face UC Irvine. In the first meeting with the Anteaters (6-19; 2-10 Big West) the Matadors won 3-2 (25-19, 18-25, 25-21, 22-25, 16-14).  Junior outside hitter Una Siljegovic had a team-high 15 kills. Senior middle blocker Lynda Morales was right behind Siljegovic with 14 kills and freshman opposite hitter Natalie Allen added 13 kills and 14 digs.

For UC Irvine, senior outside hitter Juliane Piggott had 17 kills and senior outside hitter Larissa Nordyke had 16 kills.  Sophomore libero Kristin Winkler led the Anteaters with 23 digs.

The Anteaters are second in the Big West in digs with an average of 17.03 per set. Winkler is second in the Big West in digs with 4.92 per set and senior outside hitter Kari Pestolesi is eighth in the Big West in digs with 3.47 per set.

UC Irvine has had a rough season after finishing in second place in the Big West in 2009. The Anteaters are 1-7 in its last eight games.

The Matadors are on a three game winning streak with two of those wins coming on the road.

CSUN returns to the Matadome on Friday Nov. 19 to take on Long Beach State.

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