Thursday, Sept. 19 7 p.m. PT - Cal (7-1) at UC Davis (6-5) The Pavilion - Davis, Calif. Coverage: Live Audio, Live Stats, Twitter Cal All-Time Series vs. the Aggies: 6-2 Last meeting: W, 3-0 (9-10-2010)
BERKELEY - The Cal women’s volleyball team closes out the nonconference portion of its schedule Thursday when it makes the bus drive up Interstate-80 to visit UC Davis at 7 p.m. The Bears are 7-1 and received 92 votes in this week’s AVCA Top 25, good for 27th in the nation. The Bears began the season with seven straight sweeps before losing their first match of the season last weekend against Kansas State at the Hilton Garden Inn Invitational at Haas Pavilion. Cal continues to be led by senior outside hitter Adrienne Gehan, who ranks fourth in the Pac-12 with 4.23 kills per set.
Following The Bears Thursday’s match will be streamed live via the volleyball schedule page at www.ucdavisaggies.com. Live audio also will be provided at CalBears.com with Cal Assistant Athletic Communications Director Jonathan Okanes doing the play-by-play. Real-time live stats are also available by accessing the volleyball schedule page at ucdavisaggies.com.
Social Studies Follow the Bears through social media all season in a variety of ways. Real-time match updates, links and other content is available by following Cal Volleyball on Twitter. The Cal Volleyball Facebook Page also has extensive content about the team on and off the court. And join the Bears ride this season through a camera lens at the Cal Volleyball page on Instagram.
Catching Up With The Bears Cal won two of three matches at last weekend’s Hilton Garden Inn Invitational, defeating Cal Poly and Santa Clara before falling in five sets to Kansas State. When the Bears beat the Wildcats in the first set Saturday, it gave them a 22-set win streak to begin the season.
Feller Nears 600-Win Mark Cal head coach Rich Feller needs just 11 wins to become the 16th active coach and 27th ever to reach the 600-win mark in his career. Feller, who is in his 15th season leading the Bears, has amassed a career record of 589-321 in 29 years of coaching overall. Feller spent the first 14 years of his career as the head coach at Colorado State. Feller entered the season ranked 17th among active coaches in career wins. Sam Houston State coach Brenda Gray reached the 600-win mark Saturday with a win over Jackson State.
Pinpoint Passing Fuels Efficient Attack Cal’s coaching staff placed an extra emphasis on passing during training camp, and it appears to be paying off. Pinpoint passing has been one of the primary reasons the Bears are ranked seventh in the country with a .325 hitting percentage. Senior setter Joan Caloiaro is running a precise offense and Cal’s hitters are benefitting. Middle blocker Lara Vukasovic is sixth in the conference and 24th in the nation with a .429 hitting percentage.
Gehan Greatness If the Pac-12 chose a Player of the Year after the first three weeks of the season, outside hitter Adrienne Gehan would be right there in the mix. The senior from Dallas, Texas ranks fourth in the conference and 24th nationally with 4.23 kills per set and is hitting an impressive .347, 12th among all outside hitters in the country. Gehan also averages 3.08 digs per set and has been one of the Bears’ primary passers in an offense hitting .325. Gehan was named tournament MVP in the Cal Molten Classic and the Bluejay Invitational. Gehan was a Preseason All-Pac-12 Team selection this season.
Latest on Lara Sophomore Lara Vukasovic is embracing her new role as a middle blocker. Entering the week, Vukasovic ranks sixth in the Pac-12 and 24th nationally with a .429 hitting percentage. Vukasovic was named to the All-Tournament Team at the Bluejay Invitational and Hilton Garden Inn Invitational. Vukasovic was a part-time starter at both outside hitter and opposite hitter last season as a freshman.
Michelle Neumayr’s Long Road Back Outside hitter Michelle Neumayr made her long-awaited college debut in the Bears’ season-opener against Nevada on Aug. 30 at the Cal Molten Classic. Neumayr, who was the No. 27 Senior Ace by Prepvolleyball.com at Burlingame High School, tore the ACL in her left knee the summer before her freshman year at Cal. Then after fully recovering, she tore the same ligament last summer. Two surgeries and hours of rehab later, Neumayr is finally on the floor for the first time at Cal. Neumayr was also selected as a team captain this season, along with senior outside hitter Adrienne Gehan.
Cool Caloiaro Senior setter Joan Caloiaro has been extremely efficient leading the Bears’ offense through the first two weeks of the season. She has quarterbacked an offense that ranks seventh in the nation with a .325 hitting percentage and averages 10.96 assists per set, good for fifth in the Pac-12 and 36th nationally. Caloiaro made a seamless transition leading Cal’s offense last season after transferring from San Francisco. She finished 2012 ranked fourth in the Pac-12 with 10.4 assists per set. Caloiaro has a notable volleyball family. Her cousin, Kerri Walsh, is a three-time Olympic gold medalist in beach volleyball.
Freshmen Class Ranked No. 21 Nationally Cal’s six-member recruiting class features three “Fab 50” selections by Volleyball Magazine and was ranked as the No. 21 class in the country by Prepvolleyball.com. Not only were middle blocker Jenelle Jordan, setter Alyssa Jensen and libero Maddy Kerr named to the Fab 50 list, each also was tabbed as a “Senior Ace” by Prepvolleyball.com. Defensive specialists Sarah Cole, Sabrina Blackwell and Katie Curci round out the 2013 recruiting class.
Bears Picked To Finish 7th In Preseason Poll Cal was selected to finish in seventh place in the Pac-12 standings in a preseason vote among the conference’s coaches. The Bears received 59 points in the ballotting, six points behind sixth-place Arizona State and seven ahead of eighth-place Arizona. Stanford was chosen to win the conference championship.
About UC Davis • The Aggies enter the match with a record of 6-5 after winning two of three at last weekend’s UP/OSU Challenge in Portland, Ore. Junior middle blocker Victoria Lee and junior outside hitter Valerie Brain were named to the All-Tournament Team. • UC Davis took Pac-12 opponent Oregon State to five sets before losing on Saturday. • Cal and UC Davis have one common opponent so far in Nevada, which both teams swept. • Sophomore outside hitter Kaylin Squyres leads the Aggies with 3.27 kills per set. Lee ranks third in the Big West Conference with a .403 hitting percentage.
Diggin’ It With Adrienne Gehan Go inside Cal’s volleyball program every week with Adrienne Gehan’s blog, “Diggin’ It With Adrienne Gehan,” on CalBears.com. Every week, Gehan will provide an inside look at everything going on with the program, both on and off the court. From their on-court battles to the locker room to the classroom to road trips, Gehan will pull back the curtain to give fans a closer look at Cal’s volleyball program.
Next Week The Bears open Pac-12 play with two matches at Haas Pavilion. On Wednesday, Cal hosts No. 8 Stanford, the defending conference champion, at 7:30 p.m. Then on Friday, the Bears welcome the Arizona Wildcats to Berkeley for an 8 p.m. match. Both contests will be televised by the Pac-12 Networks.
Season Tickets On Sale 2013 season tickets are still on sale and can be purchased by calling (800) GO-BEARS, visiting CalBears.com or at the Athletic Ticket Office at Haas Pavilion. Season tickets include 10 Pac-12 matches to be played at Haas Pavilion. The cost of season tickets is a 50 percent discount over buying them on a game-by-game basis.
Bears To Get Plenty Of TV Exposure Sixteen of Cal’s 20 conference matches will be televised by the Pac-12 Networks, including all 10 taking place at Haas Pavilion. Each of Cal’s first seven conference matches will be televised, beginning with its Pac-12 opener against Stanford on Sept. 25.
Olympic Sports Report “Olympic Sports Report,” a new weekly online show on CalBears.com, airs every Thursday. The program takes a look at the different Olympic sports on campus and will include volleyball coverage throughout the 2013 fall season.
Bears Still On Cusp Of National Rankings A five-set loss to Kansas State in the Hilton Garden Inn Invitational on Saturday dropped the Bears out of the AVCA Top 25. Cal had entered the poll the previous week at No. 23 after defeating Creighton on its home floor at the Bluejay Invitational. The Bears still received 92 votes this week, putting them at No. 27 nationally. Cal also received enough votes in the Volleyball Magazine top-20 to be ranked 24th.
Inside The Locker Room “Inside The Locker Room, a new hour-long radio show that features guests from all over Cal Athletics, airs every Wednesday on KGO AM 810 from 7-8 p.m. Cal coach Rich Feller was a guest on the first broadcast and outside hitter Adrienne Gehan is scheduled to appear on the show on Oct. 2. Cal football coach Sonny Dykes appears every week. The show is hosted by Todd McKim.
California Golden Bears Usage Guidelines When referring to University of California intercollegiate athletic teams, please use California or Golden Bears on first reference. Cal or Bears may be used on second reference. Terms such as UC Berkeley, Cal-Berkeley, Berkeley or California-Berkeley (or other similar variations) are incorrect and should not be used in connection with Cal Athletics.
Cal Still Nation’s No. 1 Public University Cal was rated as the No. 1 public university in the United States for the 16th year in a row in the latest U.S. News and World Report rankings that were released earlier this month. UCLA and Virginia were second among public universities in the 2014 Guide to America’s Best Colleges. U.S. News also lists Cal among the top universities in strong commitment to teaching, least amount of student debt upon graduation and a top choice among high school guidance counselors.