Gauchos Win Seventh in a Row, Defeat Aztecs

SAN DIEGO - The UC Santa Barbara women's volleyball team continued its push for a postseason berth, winning its seventh straight match with a 25-23, 22-25, 26-24, 25-19 victory over San Diego State on Friday night in the Turkey Time Tournament.

Kara Sherrard led UCSB with 14 kills and was one of two players with double doubles as she also picked up 13 digs for the Gauchos (19-11 overall).

Leah Sully, named to the All-Big West Honorable Mention team earlier this week, had 13 kills and a team-best 22 digs in the penultimate match of the season for Santa Barbara.

Senior Stacey Schmidt was the other Gaucho with double-digit kills as she tallied 11 to go with eight digs and five block assists. The three-time All-Big West First Team pick helped pace a Gaucho defense that had 13.0 total team blocks on the night.

Chelsey Lowe, who was also a Big West All-First Team pick had 14 digs for UCSB as she moved closer to setting the single-season digs mark at UC Santa Barbara.

With things tied at one game apiece, the pivotal third game saw UCSB jump out to a quick 7-4 lead only to see the Aztecs (17-10) score 10 straight points for a 14-7 advantage. UCSB head coach Kathy Gregory burned both of the team's timeouts during the run, but it didn't thwart SDSU's run.

A service error by SDSU finally stopped the rally but San Diego State still led 20-15 later in the set. A kill from Schmidt and three straight attack errors from the Aztecs gave UCSB new life as the Gauchos then trailed 20-19.

Kills from Lily Lopez (eight kills on the night) and Schmidt gave UCSB a 21-20 lead before an Aztec hitting error gave UCSB a two-point advantage.

The teams traded points until a kill from Lopez put UCSB up 24-23. After SDSU tied it, a service error and an attack error by the Aztecs gave the Gauchos the game.

It also gave them the momentum for the fourth set and, eventually, the match.

San Diego State had 26 hitting errors and a whopping 12 service errors on the night.

The Gauchos look for 20 victories on the season on Saturday when they close the Turkey Time Tournament with a match vs. TCU. First serve is at 4:30.

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