Gauchos Open Home Schedule by Hosting 2017 Thunderdome Classic

Gauchos Open Home Schedule by Hosting 2017 Thunderdome Classic

2017 UCSB Thunderdome Classic Tournament Central
Full Release in PDF Format
Big West TV

• The Schedule 
Friday, September 8, 2017 at 10:00 a.m. 
UC Santa Barbara vs. Yale (3-0)
at the Thunderdome
Stream: Big West TV
All-time record vs. Bulldogs: 3-0
Streak vs. Yale: Won 3
Last meeting: W, 3-1 (9/5/15)

Friday, September 8, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. 
UC Santa Barbara vs. No. 19 USC (4-2)
at the Thunderdome
Stream: Big West TV
All-time record vs. Women of Troy: 10-18
Streak vs. USC: Lost 5
Last meeting: L, 3-1 (9/14/13)

Saturday, September 9, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara vs. Arkansas (6-1)
at the Thunderdome
Stream: Big West TV
All-time record vs. Razorbacks: 0-0
Streak vs. Arkansas: N/A
Last meeting: N/A

• The Week Ahead
This week, the Gauchos return home to host the 2017 UCSB Thunderdome Classic, the fourth consecutive season that the program will host a pre-conference tournament on campus. This year, the tourney field includes Yale, No. 19 Southern California (USC), and Arkansas. The Gauchos will take on Yale and USC this Friday in a 10 AM-7 PM doubleheader, and then will face Arkansas to close out the tournament. The visiting teams are a combined 13-3 heading into the weekend.

• Gauchos on the Air
Every single match of this weekend's tournament, both UCSB's and the neutral matches, will be streamed live through Big West TV. After this weekend, every minute of Gaucho action in Big West play, both home and away, will be streamed live by the conference. Links for all broadcasts will be available on addition, UCSB will make a pair of appearances on ESPN3 this season, on the road at Long Beach State (Sept. 30) and at UC Riverside (Nov. 18).

• Thunderdome Classic Schedule
Friday, Sept. 8
10 AM – UCSB (H) vs. Yale (A)
12:30 PM – Arkansas (H) vs. USC (A)
4:30 PM – Yale (H) vs. Arkansas (A)
7:00 PM – UCSB (H) vs. USC (A)

Saturday, Sept. 9
4:00 PM – USC (H) vs. Yale (A)
7:00 PM – UCSB (H) vs. Arkansas (A)

• The Week in Review
UCSB participated in the Utah State Tournament last weekend, the team's second non-conference tourney of the year. Unfortunately, the Gauchos went a combined 0-3, dropping single matches to Montana State, former Big West-mate Pacific, and the host Aggies. 

• Home Sweet Dome
After spending the first two weeks of the season on the road in Waco, Texas and Logan, Utah, the Gauchos will be happy to be back in the friendly confines of the Thunderdome, AKA the UCSB Events Center. UCSB has gone .500 or better at home in three of the past four seasons.

• Tournament Tangling
Over the last three seasons, UCSB has accrued a 4-3 record in its preseason home tournament, going 2-1 last year, 0-2 in 2015, and a perfect 2-0 in 2014. 

• Ruddins Is Killing It
A year after breaking out with an eye-grabbing redshirt freshman season, UCSB outside hitter Lindsey Ruddins is continuing her strong play in 2017. The Aliso Viejo, Calif. native ranks seventh in the nation and first in the Big West with a 5.06 kills per set average. Emphasizing her importance to the squad, she leads the entire nation with a 14.94 swings per set average. In the season-opening tournament at Baylor, Ruddins recorded 36 kills in a match against No. 15 Florida State, setting a new rally-era program record and finishing just two behind Roberta Gehlke for the all-time single-match mark (38 vs. LBSU, 9/30/99) in Gaucho lore. The reigning Big West Freshman of the Year and AVCA All-American has notched 73 kills over her last three outings, an average of 5.62 per game. 

• Lantagne Welch on the Verge of Milestone
Entering the weekend, UCSB head coach Nicole Lantagne Welch needs just two victories to reach 300 in her esteemed career. In her 17th season overall as a head coach (12 years at Miami), she is the winningest active coach in the Big West. 55 of Lantagne Welch's 298 career victories have come as the bench boss for UCSB, a position she took over before the 2013 season.

• Petrachi Hits the Ground Running
A model of consistency, junior libero Emilia Petrachi is enjoying a productive start to the 2017 season. The Modena, Italy native leads the Big West with 106 digs and is second with a 4.82 digs per set average, up from her career average of 4.6. With 52 digs in the Utah State Tournament, she was the Gaucho representative on the All-Tourney Team and was nominated for Big West Defensive Player of the Week honors. Petrachi has averaged four digs per set or better in five of UCSB's six matches this season, and she finished just shy (3.25 vs. Pacific) in the one match she failed to reach that mark. 

• Gauchos Tabbed to Finish Fourth in the Big West
The Gauchos were picked to finish fourth in the league in the annual Preseason Big West Coaches Poll. UCSB earned 49 points in the poll. Hawai'i (six first place votes, 78 points) was picked to win the league in front of Cal Poly (71 points) and Long Beach State (65 points).