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The Honolulu Advertiser

Updated at 7:26 p.m., Thursday, December 14, 2006

Nebraska, Stanford advance to volleyball title match

Associated Press

OMAHA, Neb. — Tracy Stalls had 13 kills in the final two games to help Nebraska advance to the NCAA volleyball championship match with a 3-1 comeback victory over UCLA on Thursday night.

The match was played before 17,013 at the Quest Center Omaha, the largest crowd to see a women's volleyball match in NCAA history.

Sarah Pavan had 22 kills and four aces for the Cornhuskers, who beat the Bruins, 23-30, 30-28, 30-23, 30-28, to set up a title match Saturday night against Stanford.

Stanford beat Washington, 30-12, 30-25, 30-15, in the other semifinals.

The Cornhuskers (32-1) were down 22-21 in the fourth game, but Stalls had kills on three of the next four points and Sarah Pavan added an ace, giving Nebraska a 25-22 advantage. The Bruins cut it to 29-28 before Jordan Larson ended the match with a kill.

UCLA (33-4) never trailed in the first game. The Bruins used a 7-0 run to take a 26-17 lead, keyed by four Nebraska errors. Down 28-18, the Cornhuskers scored four straight points to make it 29-22, but couldn't get closer.

Nebraska led 21-18 in the second game, but UCLA tied it at 22 on Ali Daley's kill. Rachel Holloway and Kori Cooper teamed up for a block to give Nebraska a 29-28 lead and UCLA's Nellie Spicer was called for an illegal lift, giving the Cornhuskers the game.

In the third game, the Cornhuskers rattled off 10 straight points to take a 23-13 lead. Stalls had three kills and two block assists during that stretch, while Pavan added two aces. UCLA pulled to 27-22, but Nebraska won three of the next four points to take a 2-1 match lead. Stalls had kills in the game.

UCLA beat Hawai'i in the Honolulu regional final to advance to the final four.