Saturday, 13 April 2024
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NCAA Beach Volleyball

No. 8 Cal Begins Season In Berkeley

No. 8 Cal Begins Season In Berkeley



Bears Earned First NCAA Win, Record 29 Matches In 2023

BERKELEY – Coming off a 2023 campaign that saw the Golden Bears set a program record with 29 wins and earn their first win at the NCAA Championship, the No. 8 California beach volleyball team begins a new season this Friday and Saturday with four matches at the Clark Kerr Sand Courts.

On Friday, the Bears host American River at 10 a.m. PT and San Jose State at 2:30 p.m. before closing things out Saturday against Saint Mary’s at 9 a.m. and Santa Clara at 3 p.m.

2023 REWIND

In its 10th season ever, Cal won nine straight matches from March 4-12 – including four over ranked opponents –  with six sweeps. The Bears later broke the program wins record with its 27th on April 27 with a 3-2 win over then-No. 3 USC and went on to enter the NCAA Championship with their highest seeding ever at eight. Their final win came in a 3-2 victory over ninth-seeded Long Beach State in the opening round of the NCAA Championship. One day later, they fell 3-1 to No. 1 seed and eventual NCAA runner-up UCLA.

THE SQUAD

The Bears 2024 roster includes 13 returners, two transfers and three true freshmen.

In her first year as a Bear, Sierra Caffo established herself as one of the team’s top players. The San Diego native earned AVCA All-America honors after leading the team with 10 sets won on court one and a 24-12 overall set record. This past summer, she played for Team USA and won silver at the Norceca Beach Championship with her former LSU teammate Ella Larkin.

Ava Mann and Brooke Buchner are also back for their senior seasons. Buchner’s .694 set win percentage and 25 set wins are both the second-highest among Cal’s returners only to Alex Young-Gomez’s .750 win percentage and 27 total victories. The Bears also added graduate student Lara Boos from LSU and sophomore Finley Rollins from UC Davis. Boos went 29-6 last year with seven wins against top-20 teams.

*2023 Cal Beach Volleyball Statistics

AVCA PRESEASON POLL

After ending 2023 in seventh place in the final AVCA poll, Cal enters this year with a No. 8 national ranking, three spots higher than its starting spot prior to the 2023 season.

THE SCHEDULE

Cal will face the entire top 10 from the final 2023 AVCA poll as well as 13 of the 16 teams that qualified for last year’s NCAA Championship. Following the home-opening weekend, the Bears won’t be back in Berkeley until a March 26…

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