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

Loading Recent Classifieds...

No. 3 CSUN gets back to their winning ways in No Cal

Setter Matt Stork had a season-high 71 assists in a win over Stanford Friday night. Photo Credit: Sarah Smith / Staff Photographer

A week after getting destroyed by UCLA at home the No. 3 Matadors responded with a road sweep of No. 2 Stanford (3-2) and Pacific (3-0) on Friday and Saturday night setting up a potential one versus two showdown on Wednesday at the Matadome.

In their match against the Cardinal (3-3, 3-3 MPSF) at Maples pavilion, Northridge (8-1, 5-1 MPSF) played their first five set match of the season winning 3-2 (25-30, 30-21, 30-25, 32-34, 15-13).

“It is always nice to beat someone ranked above you,” junior opposite hitter Tanner Nua said after defeating No. 2 Stanford. “They are always a tough competitor so a win like this boost our spirit sky high.”

Four players were in double digit kills against the Cardinal; senior outside hitter Theo Edwards, as he has done most of the early part of the season, led the Matadors in kills with a career-high 21. Senior middle blocker Jacek Ratajczak rebounded from poor performances in recent matches and added 20 while Nua chipped in with 17.

“I was very focused, I knew they were a good team,” Ratajczak said. “Whenever we are playing against a good team I like to have high energy… I guess tonight was my night so I’m glad we came out with the win.”

The Matadors got out to a bad start against the Cardinal dropping the first set and looked much like the team that got swept against UCLA in that first frame. Trailing early in the second set 6-4 CSUN head coach Jeff Campbell went to his bench for a spark and turned to true freshman middle blocker Drew Staker. After inserting Staker in the match the Matadors went on a 14-7 run and took control of the second set and cruised to a set win.

“Kevin (McKniff) wasn’t blocking very well and he wasn’t connecting,” Campbell said. “He is usually very good offensively; he was just not connecting for some reason. He was tipping a lot balls and so we decided to go with Drew.”

Northridge dominated the third and most of the fourth set and were up 25-19 until the Cardinal rallied and tied the frame at 27 and eventually took the lead on the next point. The set went back-and-forth the rest of the way until back-to-back points from Stanford with game tied at 32 gave the Cardinal a 34-32 set win forcing a deciding fifth set.

In the final frame, Edwards took over with four kills and a serving ace, which helped the Matadors escape with 15-13 win.

“I just wanted to win,” Edwards said. “I told Matt (Stork) I live for this give me the ball and I wanted it, so I went hard.”

The next night the Matadors made quick work of Pacific (4-6, 0-6 MPSF) sweeping the Tigers (30-27, 30-25, 30-23) Edwards pounded a team high 12 kills while senior outside hitter Mike Gaudino added 11.

The road sweep of the Cardinal and the Tigers set up a potential one versus two in the nation against USC Wednesday at the Matadome.

“To tell you the truth I don’t want to talk too much about (the USC game) but I will tell you that they are a great team and we are going to come in and get them,” Edwards said.

More to Discover