CS Northridge Finds Focus in 4-Game Victory : College volleyball: Matadors defeat Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.

TIMES STAFF WRITER

The Cal State Northridge women's volleyball team has yet to play with the consistency that first-year Coach John Price envisioned, but the Matadors continued to show signs of improvement Tuesday with a 15-12, 8-15, 15-4, 16-14 victory over Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in the Matador Gymnasium.

Aimee Stone had match-high totals of 24 kills and 11 digs, and teammate Missy Clements added 14 kills (.440 hitting percentage) as Northridge (8-9) notched its third victory in four matches.

A victory over Cal State Sacramento at Matador Gymnasium Saturday would move Northridge to the .500 mark for the first time since Sept. 11, when they were 4-4.

"Hopefully, we've turned the corner," Price said. "It's always hard to tell from the sidelines, but I thought the girls played with a lot more togetherness tonight than they've shown most of the season.

"They seemed to have their minds focused on winning and that hasn't always been the case this season. There have been times when it seemed like they had some other things on their agenda."

Stone, who has 87 kills in the last four matches, clinched the victory when her kill attempt went out of bounds off a Cal Poly block.

The 5-foot-10 junior had a chance to give Northridge the victory with the Matadors leading, 14-11, but she was penalized for delay of game when she failed to put the ball in play during the required five-second time period.

"I don't think she ever heard the referee's whistle (to signal the beginning of play)," Price said. "The crowd was getting pretty loud."

After several sideouts, the Mustangs (8-10) tied the score, 14-14. Northridge took a one-point lead on a kill by Ana Kristich (11 kills, nine digs, five block assists), and Stone followed with her victorious hit.

Senior Andrea Lucadam, a former standout at L.A. Baptist High, led San Luis Obispo with 11 kills and 10 digs.

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