The following are updates on local athletes at the collegiate level.
Jenna Orlandini (Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy, 2008) senior libero, University of Washington volleyball: For the first time since 2006, the Huskies knocked off two top-five opponents in consecutive matches in No. 4 UCLA and third-ranked USC.
Orlandini posted a season-high 22 digs in the five-game win over the Bruins, 22-25, 30-28, 19-25, 28-26, 16-14, Sept. 26 and had nine more with four assists in the sweep over the Trojans, 25-23, 26-24, 25-21, two days later. For the season, she has a team-high 147 digs, which is eighth in the Pac-12 with a 3.67 set average, and 33 assists.
“We grew up a lot,” Washington Coach Jim McLaughlin said. “We were talking about an opportunity to take another step forward. It showed some maturity in this group. Beating the Bruins was an emotional win, and sometimes you can take a step back, but I challenged these guys not to. They rose to the challenge and really played well, still screwed up at times, but recovered, and that's the sign of a good team when you can recover.”
The victories improved Washington to 13-0, 4-0 in the Pac-12 Conference this season. It’s the finest start for the Huskies, who are ranked No. 2, since they opened the 2009 season with 15 straight wins. Washington looks to keep up the pace when it heads out to take on Utah Friday and Colorado Sunday.
Pavle Atanackovic (Crescenta Valley High, 2012) freshman forward, UC Irvine men’s soccer: After winning three of their first four games, the Anteaters haven’t picked up a win in their past nine matches, including Big West Conference losses at home to Sacramento State (2-1) and UC Davis (3-1) on Friday and Sunday, respectively.
Atanackovic tried to bring UC Irvine (3-7-1, 0-2 in conference) back against the Aggies Sunday, as he had his first assist of the year and three shots — two on goal — in the game. Atanackovic corralled a loose ball in UC Irvine’s box and played it off to Lester Hayes III, who rattled it home in the 60th minute.
It was the Anteaters’ only highlight of the game, as the Aggies had already scored three goals by that point and held on for the two-goal win.
Atanackovic has yet to start this season, but he’s made an impact off the bench, appearing in six of 11 games. He has five points (two goals and an assist) and nine shots to his name this year. Both his goals came in a Sept. 14 in a 2-2 tie with Missouri State.
Eric Kazangian (Flintridge Prep, 2011) sophomore defensive back, Occidental College football: The 2012 season has been marred by offensive struggles for the Tigers, who fell to 0-3 in their Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference opener Saturday at the University of Redlands (49-7).
Occidental has lost its first three games, which included Pacific University (27-6) and Menlo College (56-6) by an average of 37.6 points.
Kazangian has played in all three of games in the secondary for Occidental. He has five solo tackles in those games this year with four of them coming in the Tigers’ season opener with the Boxers Sept. 8.