The UCSB women’s volleyball team will look to win its second match in a row when the team welcomes Big West conference rivals Cal Poly into the Thunderdome. Saturday night.

[media-credit id=20125 align=”alignleft” width=”163″][/media-credit]“We always want to beat any team in the Big West, but there is definitely a rivalry there with Cal Poly, and we are motivated,” senior setter Dana Vargas said.

Santa Barbara (14-11 overall, 8-4 Big West) is coming off a 3-0 sweep of last place UC Riverside. The Gauchos are currently tied for third place in the Big West with Cal Poly. The Mustangs (18-7 overall, 8-4 Big West) previously lost to UCSB at home earlier this season.

“Cal Poly is a very good blocking team,” Head Coach Kathy Gregory said. “To beat them we are going to serve well and have a balanced offensive attack to get their blockers out of position.”

Vargas, who is tied for third in the conference with 10.71 assists per set, has spearheaded the Gaucho attack. Senior outside hitter Charlene DeHoog leads the team and is eighth in the Big West with 3.12 kills per set, and junior middle blocker Stacey Schmidt is tenth in the league with 3.05 kills per set. Freshman libero Kelly Heenan is seventh in the Big West with 350 total digs.

“To be successful going forward for the rest of the season, we are going to need to have a balanced offensive attack,” Vargas said. “Against [Cal Poly], we are just looking to execute and we should come away with a win.”

First serve is set for 7 p.m. on Saturday night in the Thunderdome. Coach Gregory echoed the sentiment of her team captain.

“We are ready to go and are prepared and motivated heading into this match,” Gregory said. “We are looking at this as a must-win.”