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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Rubio to return to CSUB for 1st time since ’92

    The Arizona women’s volleyball team is on the road this weekend to compete in the California State University Bakersfield Invitational tournament. The squad is scheduled to play Fresno State (2-4) today at noon, then Chicago State (0-7) at 4:30 p.m., and Cal State Bakersfield (3-4) at 7 p.m. tomorrow.

    Not only will Arizona (5-1) play its first away match of the season, it will be the newcomers’ first time leaving the coop.

    “”I’m looking forward to traveling with the team and seeing how we play because we haven’t played on the road yet,”” said freshman Tori Moore. “”The teams we’re playing don’t seem like they’re going to be too difficult, but we still have to play hard.””

    Moore is redshirting this year but will travel with the Wildcats because she’s the only backup setter on the roster. If sophomore Paige Weber couldn’t set in a match for any reason, Moore would be ready to take over.

    The Wildcats may not be in Pacific 10 Conference level of play yet, but that didn’t give them any reason to lose focus in practice or fail to set goals for the weekend.

    “”I’ve been working on closing the block and getting my hands over the net,”” said redshirt freshman Kaylen Bannister. “”And also getting a lot of touches on the block to make it easier for the defense.””

    Since the teams Arizona will encounter aren’t at the highest level of competition, Bannister said this weekend will be a good time to work on improving their offense and defense before Pac-10 competition.

    This weekend will also be a homecoming of sorts for UA head coach David Rubio.

    Prior to Rubio’s arrival as Arizona’s head coach in 1992, he was head coach at CSUB, where he led the then-Division II program to three consecutive top-five finishes and won the 1989 national championship.

    The Roadrunners made the trip to Tucson last year to play the Wildcats – Arizona won 3-0 – but this will be Rubio’s first returning trip during the regular season since he took the position at Arizona.

    “”Obviously, for sentimental reasons, it’s nice going back there – but more importantly we need to return the trip that we owe them,”” Rubio said.

    Rubio added that he is a close friend and former teammates with CSUB head coach John Price.

    The Wildcats had Monday off, followed by a feel-good week of practice so they could have time to rest their bodies and get healthy.

    “”They are all a little tired, I know, and battling some of the illnesses that are going around,”” Rubio said. “”But we have to continue to get better – every team in the country is dealing with the same things we are – so we just gotta keep grinding away.””

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