PROVO, Utah -- Alexa Gray led the women’s volleyball team with 10 kills as the Cougars swept No. 2 University of San Diego on Friday night at the BYU Smith Fieldhouse.
“More than anything I’m really happy for these girls and our staff, no one understands the amount of preparation and time that the staff and the girls put in,” BYU head coach Shawn Olmstead said. “They really got into the game plan and they followed it perfectly and I think that’s why we had so much success.”
Freshman Amy Boswell added nine kills and nine blocks for the Cougars (8-3, 1-0 WCC) in the West Coast Conference opener for both teams. Sandra Lozic led San Diego (8-2, 0-1 WCC) with 13 kills and eight digs and Chloe Ferrari added 10 kills and four digs.
BYU is the first team to notch a victory in the first set and win two sets against San Diego this season.
In the first set San Diego came out strong and opened on a 4-1 run. BYU fought back and used a 4-0 run to tie things up at 10-10. The Cougars grabbed the lead and pushed their lead to 21-15 to force the visitors to call their third time out of the set. During that stretch, Kathryn LeCheminant recorded three kills and an ace to put the pressure on. BYU reached set point with a score of 24-18 and on the third set point; LeCheminant notched her fifth kill of the set to give the Cougars the set at 25-20.
In the second set the two teams battled for every point. The Cougars and the Toreros were tied at 7-7 before Camry Godfrey gave BYU its first lead of the set with an impressive ace. San Diego bounced back to tie the set at 12-12 before Gray smashed three straight kills to complete a 5-0 BYU run to take the lead back at 18-14 and force San Diego to take a timeout. Two kills and a block by Boswell pushed the lead to 23-18. The Toreros battled back with a 3-0 run to bring the score to 23-21 before a kill by Tambre Haddock and an error by San Diego gave the set to BYU 25-21.
Early on in the third set, the Cougar front line of Jessica Jardine and Boswell blocked two consecutive attacks by San Diego to tie the set at 3-3 and give the momentum back to BYU. The Cougars rode the momentum to go on a 6-1 run and lead 9-4. The visitors responded and fought back to bring the score to 18-17. Two kills by Gray and Haddock gave and an error by San Diego gave the BYU match point up 24-19. Gray won the match on her 10th kill to give the Cougars the win 25-21.
BYU returns to action on Sept. 26 against conference foe Saint Mary’s at 7 p.m. MDT in the Smith Fieldhouse. The match will be broadcast live on BYUtv.
Cougars face Utes and begin conference play
PROVO, Utah – The BYU women’s volleyball team heads north on Tuesday to face the University of Utah before heading back home to begin conference play against rival San Diego.
The Cougars improved to 6-3 during the week with sweeps at home against the Bobcats of Montana State and the Anteaters of UC Irvine.
BYU will face off against the Utes in their home territory at the Huntsman Center at 7 p.m. MDT. This will be the 96th matchup between the two in-state rivals. The Cougars won last year in Provo with a 3-0 sweep and lead the all-time series 66-29.
Utah returns six starters from a 2012 team that finished ninth in the Pac-12 with a 14-19 overall finish.
On Friday, Sept. 20, BYU will return to the comfort of the Smith Fieldhouse for its WCC home opener against the Toreros of San Diego. They are ranked second nationally. This will be the seventh match between the two conference foes. Last year the series was split 1-1, with San Diego taking the most recent contest 2-3 at its home court. The Toreros lead the overall series 2-4.
San Diego returns five starters from last year’s squad that tied BYU for a first-place finish in conference play and a 21-7 overall record.
The match against Utah will be televised on the Pac-12 Network. The Cougars’ WCC opener against San Diego will be televised nationally on BYUtv. Links to live stats can be found on the BYU women’s volleyball schedule page.