March 1, 2000
Fri., Feb. 25
vs. Pacific 3-1
Fri., March 3
vs. California 7:00 p.m.
Match Recap: The Cardinal (7-7, 7-6 MPSF) closed out the week with a victory over then-No. 12 Pacific (5-7, 5-7 MPSF) 15-10, 15-13, 11-15, 15-6 in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation match at Maples Pavilion. Stanford had dropped both matches versus the Tigers in 1998. Stanford recorded 91 kills on 190 attacks and recorded 16 blocks, led by freshman middle blocker Curt Toppel's six blocks. Toppel also tallied a match-high 39 kills, while freshman Seth Ring, playing libero, recorded 13 digs for the Cardinal. Sophomore outside hitter Marcus Skacel had 14 kills, with freshman outside hitter Billy Strickland and junior middle blocker Brett Youngberg each tallying 10 kills.
National Statistics: Freshman middle blocker Curt Toppel continues to lead the nation in kill-per game average at 8.39. Toppel, who has led the nation for four weeks, has compiled 369 kills in 44 games for the Cardinal. Sophomore outside hitter Marcus Skacel broke into the Top 10 in digs-per game average at 2.57 by recording 121 digs in 47 games. For the third week in a row, junior setter Josh Lukens made a move in the NCAA statistics. Lukens is now third in assists-per game with an 18.98 average on 892 assists in 47 games.
Stanford's In: If the season were to end today, Stanford would qualify for the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation tournament held April 22-29. After missing the tournament a season ago, Stanford has placed itself in a position to reach the post-season with a 7-5 record in the MPSF, placing them in fourth place in the Pacific Division. The top three teams in each division, along with two at-large teams -- from either division and based on best record -- reach the eight team field. Currently, Stanford is in position to secure an at-large bid which would place them in a first round match with the Pacific or Mountain Division champion. The highest seed in each round will host the match.
Ranking Report: Stanford's three-match win streak, all against top 15 teams, helped propel the Cardinal back into the USA Today/AVCA Coaches Top 15 poll this week. The poll, released Feb. 29, lists the Cardinal No. 14 after receiving 34 votes. Stanford had opened the season ranked No. 14, climbed to a season-high No. 12 on Jan. 18., before dropping out of the rankings over the past three weeks. Pepperdine remains in the No. 1 spot, receiving 15 first place votes and 238 points.
Quick Notes: Junior setter Josh Lukens reached the 2,000 assist milestone against San Diego State on January 16 and is 130 assists shy of 3,000... Lukens has moved into third on the all-time assist list with 2,870 assists, trailing Canyon Ceman's (1991-94) 5,912... Freshman Seth Ring has taken over the libero position for the Cardinal over the past six matches, averaging 1.76 digs-per game... If the season ended today, Curt Toppel would set a new Cardinal single-season record for kills-per game (8.39), breaking David Goss' 1992 record of 7.52... Stanford has a record of 3-2 when a match goes four games and 4-5 in games that last only three games... In the fourth game, the Cardinal has out-scored its opponents 68-53 and have a 173-152 advantage in the third game.