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Sagers Makes History in First Non-Conference Loss
CHICAGO -- Despite senior Kevin Sagers setting a new school record with eight service aces, the BYU men's volleyball team gave up its first non-conference loss of the 2011 season to Loyola University with a 2-3 (20-25, 20-25, 27-25, 25-11, 9-15) match score on the road.
The eight service aces from Sagers are a new BYU men's volleyball record for the most in a single match since the new scoring method was adopted in 2001. The eight also tie the all-time record that was established in 1993 by Pat Sinclair under the side-out scoring.
Against the Ramblers, Sagers also added 10 kills as one of the three BYU players to record kills in double digits. Robb Stowell and Futi Tavana joined Sagers with 19 and 10 kills, respectively.
The Ramblers took sets one and two with an identical 25-20 final score before the Cougars fought back to take set three 27-25. In the third, BYU came back from being down 17-21 to tie the game at 22 on their way to the win.
BYU started set four up 9-2 with four kills from Stowell, one from Alex DaPron and an ace from Sagers highlighting the run. Loyola tried to stay in it but never got the score within less than eight as the Cougars pushed the match to the fifth set.
With an early 3-0 run, the Ramblers took the momentum but BYU fought back to try and keep it close. The set saw three tied scores before Loyola finally took the match win on a 15-9 score.
This is only the second game for BYU all season that has gone to five sets. The Cougars are now 9-3 overall and will stay in Chicago for their next game against Lewis University on Saturday, Feb. 12, at 7 p.m. CT.
Road Games in Chicago This Weekend
The second-ranked BYU men's volleyball team will take its six-game winning streak on the road for two games in Chicago, Illi., against Loyola University and Lewis University on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 11 and 12. Both games will begin at 7 p.m. CT.
The Cougars are coming off a two-game weekend sweep of No. 5 UCLA at home with a 3-1 win on Friday and a sweep on Saturday in front of a season-high crowd in the Smith Fieldhouse.
Junior Robb Stowell leads BYU's loaded offense with 146 kills and 56 digs on the season while freshman Taylor Sander adds 126 kills himself. Joe Kauliakamoa has recorded 362 assists, and 53 digs, this season to pace the Cougar attack.
Loyola will host this weekend's game with a 5-3 season record as they look to win their first-ever match against BYU. The Ramblers are 0-4 against the Cougars all-time. Junior Mike Bunting leads the attack with 133 kills and a .455 hitting percentage this season.
Lewis is led offensively by redshirt sophomore Jay Petty with 101 kills and a .345 attacking percentage. The Flyers and Cougars last met in 2008 when Lewis took the five-set victory for their first in the 11-game series between the teams.
BYU continues its road game swing next weekend when they head to Santa Barbar, Calif., to compete against UCSB on Feb. 17 and 18 before returning to the Smith Fieldhouse on Feb. 24.