Dyck plugs hole, volleyball rallies past Santa Clara

By Lindsey Frazier
Arizona Daily Wildcat
September 12, 2005

Minus a top player and coming off its first loss of the season, the No. 15 Arizona volleyball team defeated Fresno State (31-29, 30-25, 19-30, 30-23) in the Bronco Invitational on Saturday.

With junior setter Stephanie Butkus on the sideline, the Wildcats (5-1) rebounded from a four-game loss Friday to host No. 25 Santa Clara that ended Arizona's four-game winning streak.

Butkus went down with a knee injury in the final game of Arizona's sweep over No. 18 UC-Santa Barbara on Thursday.

"She was injured on our way to winning game three," said Arizona head coach Dave Rubio. "She went to dig a ball, and her knee went one way, her body went another. We're not sure what extent the injury is at this point."

Sophomore Amy Dyck started for Butkus and recorded a career-high 49 assists against Fresno State, in addition to six blocks and five digs.

She finished with a double-double (36 assists, 10 digs) against Santa Clara.

"It's difficult when you lose the most important player on the floor and you have to put somebody (new) in," Rubio said. "You're going to lose some continuity. I thought Amy came in and did a terrific job, but it's not the same thing."

The Wildcats hit .157 to the Bulldogs' .160 and out-blocked Fresno State 15 to nine.

Rubio said that while Arizona walked away with the victory, the team showed little enthusiasm on the court.

"We have to do a much better job in our preparation regardless of who we're playing," he said. "That's a product of us taking care of business.

"Fresno State played well. They were hungry. We were just playing to get it over with. We had no passion."

Two-time All-American Kim Glass notched 24 kills, 16 digs, three blocks and three service aces against the Bulldogs.

Senior outside hitter Jennifer Abernathy came up just short of a double-double with 20 digs, nine kills and four blocks.

Fellow senior outside hitter Bre Ladd had 10 kills, while sophomore middle blocker Dominique Lamb recorded a career-high 10 blocks.

Freshman libero Brittany Leonard set a career-high of with 27 digs.

Though the game against Santa Clara was tightly played, the Broncos out-hit Arizona .303 to .192. Santa Clara recorded 10 blocks and 72 kills compared to Arizona's six and 49, respectively.

Abernathy paced Arizona with 16 kills, while Glass notched 13.

Junior opposite hitter Kristina Baum finished with eight kills and 10 digs.

The Wildcats return to the road this weekend when they travel to Kingston, R.I., for the Rhode Island Invitational.

Arizona competes in a doubleheader on Friday against Connecticut at 11 a.m. and hosts Rhode Island at 4 p.m.

"We have to be prepared to play this weekend with Amy as the starting setter," Rubio said. "Once we get a little bit of time under our wings with Amy as the starting setter, we'll be fine."