Brigham Young University
Jan 27 | 12:00 PM
3 - 0
University of Portland
Chiles Center

Portsmouth Ave Portland OR 97203

Braden Taylor | Posted: 27 Jan 2021 | Updated: 17 Feb 2021
Braden Taylor

Cougars Complete Road Sweep Over Portland

Kennedy Eschenberg vs Loyola Marymount 2019

PORTLAND, Ore. – No. 16 BYU women’s volleyball swept Portland (25-23, 26-24, 25-22) at the Chiles Center for the second-straight day to complete the road sweep over the Pilots.

Middle blocker Kennedy Eschenberg led the Cougars with 11 kills on a .474 clip. Outside hitter Taylen Ballard-Nixon contributed nine kills of her own while recording a career-high four aces. Setter Whitney Bower ended the match with 34 assists, eight digs and a service ace.

Defensive specialist Grace Wee finished with a career-high 11 digs while libero Madi Allen posted double-digit digs for the second match in a row with 10. Allen also added a pair of aces to her stat line.

Final Box Score - BYU vs. Portland 1-27-21

BYU (2-0, 2-0 WCC) opened the match with a 3-2 edge over Portland (0-2, 0-2 WCC) behind kills from opposite Kate Grimmer and Ballard-Nixon. After the two teams battled back and forth, aces by Ballard-Nixon and middle blocker Whitney Llarenas helped give BYU a three-point advantage, 13-10. Eschenberg had five kills on five attempts in the set to help the Cougars hold off the Pilots and win the first game 25-23.

After trailing 7-5, two aces by Ballard-Nixon and a pair of kills by Eschenberg gave BYU a 12-9 lead. Allen added an ace of her own to increase the Cougars’ advantage to four points, 14-10. Portland answered with a 7-0 run to retake the lead, 17-14. Four kills by Ballard-Nixon late in the set helped BYU comeback and take the second game, 26-24.

Portland jumped out to a 10-5 advantage to start the third set. Outside hitter Leilani Dodson had a pair of kills as the Cougars outscored the Pilots 7-2 to tie it up at 12-all. Eschenberg added two kills of her own to give BYU a 15-14 edge. Ballard-Nixon’s fourth ace of the afternoon improved the Cougars' lead to 17-15. Trailing 22-21, BYU scored four-straight points to clinch set three, 25-22, and complete the road sweep over Portland.

BYU’s next opponent will be Gonzaga after the Cougars’ two-match series with Santa Clara, originally scheduled for Feb. 2-3, was postponed due to the Broncos delaying the start of their season two weeks. BYU is currently scheduled to host Gonzaga for two matches at the Smith Fieldhouse Feb. 9-10.


Braden Taylor | Posted: 25 Jan 2021 | Updated: 27 Jan 2021
Braden Taylor

Season Opens Tuesday at Portland

Kennedy Eschenberg 2021 Blue White

PROVO, Utah – No. 16 BYU women’s volleyball will open its 2020-21 season with a two-match series against Portland at the Chiles Center Jan. 26-27.

The first match is set to start at 12 p.m. PST on Tuesday, Jan. 26, and the second match will take place at the same time on the following day, Wednesday, Jan. 27. Both matches will be streamed on the WCC Network.

No. 16 BYU Cougars (0-0, 0-0 WCC)

  • BYU ranked No. 16 in the AVCA preseason poll, marking 106-straight weeks of appearing in the national poll
  • Since NCAA play began in 1981, the Cougars are 32-7 in season openers
  • BYU finished No. 17 in the final poll after finishing with a 26-5 record and claiming its eighth-straight NCAA Tournament berth
  • The squad features 11 returnees, including AVCA All-America honoree Kennedy Eschenberg, and four newcomers
  • The Cougars went 16-2 in WCC play to finish second in the conference last season
  • The WCC coaches picked the Cougars to finish second in the league in the preseason poll while selecting middle blocker Kennedy Eschenberg, outside hitter Taylen Ballard-Nixon and setter Whitney Bower to the All-WCC Preseason Team
  • BYU's 2020-21 Season Preview
  • BYU Match Notes

Series Information:

  • BYU is 17-1 all-time against Portland
  • The Cougars have swept the Pilots seven-straight times since losing their only match in the series in 2016

Portland Pilots (0-0, 0-0 WCC)

  • Portland is led by first-year head coach Megan Burton
  • This year’s roster features five newcomers and eight returning members from the 2019 squad
  • The Pilots played two exhibition matches this season, losing 3-1 to No. 8 Washington and sweeping Corban
  • Portland ended the 2019 season with an 11-18 overall record
  • The Pilots finished 10th of the 2019 WCC standings after going 3-15 in league play
  • The WCC coaches picked the Pilots to finish 10th in the league in the preseason poll and selected outside hitter Liz Reich to the All-WCC Preseason Team

Broadcast Information – January 26

Broadcast Information – January 27

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