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Brigham Young University
Cameron Muh | Posted: 27 Aug 2021 | Updated: 2 Oct 2021
Cameron Muh

Cougars down Sharks, improve to 2-0

BYU women's volleyball celebrates a three set sweep of Long Island University in Provo at the Smith Fieldhouse.

PROVO, Utah — No. 15 BYU women’s volleyball earned its second win of the dōTERRA Classic, sweeping Long Island (25-11, 25-10, 25-9) in the Smith Fieldhouse on Friday night. 

"This is insane. I've never felt anything so electric. It was the most fun match I've played in a long time," said BYU senior opposite Kenzie Koerber. “I personally thrive off a crowd. It helps me bring the energy I know I can supply to my team.” 

On a night that featured an attendance of 4,823, good for sixth all-time in the Fieldhouse for a women's volleyball match, the Cougars (2-0, 0-0 WCC) hit .462 compared to the Sharks’ -.077. Koerber led BYU with nine kills on a .471 clip, and also added nine digs. 

Senior outside hitter Taylen Ballard-Nixon recorded eight kills, hitting .800 on the night, and junior setter Whitney Bower contributed 33 assists. Sophomore libero Madi Allen also tallied ten digs.

Set One

Led by kills from six different Cougars, BYU opened up an early 8-3 lead. Three kills by Koerber and an ace by Bower highlighted a run that put the Cougars ahead by double digits at 17-7. BYU ended the set on a 5-2 run to close it out, 25-11. 

Set Two

Capped by a hustle play and ace from senior setter Taylor Hifo, the Cougars once again went ahead early, this time by 10 at 12-2. Three kills by Ballard-Nixon paced BYU as it went up 19-8. Closing the second set on a 6-2 run, the Cougars took the second set 25-10.

Set Three

Two kills from Koerber and three by Nixon helped BYU to a 10-2 lead to open the third set. A seven-serve run by senior middle Whitney Llarenas put BYU up 20-6. After the two teams traded points, junior opposite Kate Grimmer’s kill clinched the match with a 25-9 third set victory.

The Cougars conclude dōTERRA Classic play against UNLV on Saturday, Aug. 28 at 7 p.m. MDT. The match will be televised on BYUtv and will also be available on the BYUtv app. 


Karina Amos | Posted: 23 Aug 2021 | Updated: 1 Sep 2021
Karina Amos

Women's Volleyball to open 2021 season with dōTERRA Classic

BYU women's volleyball huddles around coach olmstead who is giving instruction

PROVO, Utah — No. 15 BYU women’s volleyball will open the 2021 season with the doTERRA Classic Aug. 27 and 28 at home in the Smith Fieldhouse. 

The Cougars will host Long Island University, UNLV and Southern Utah. Below is a breakdown of this weekend’s schedule.

Aug. 27

10 a.m. - UNLV vs. LIU

12 p.m. - SUU vs. BYU

7 p.m. - LIU vs. BYU

Aug. 28

10 a.m. - SUU vs. UNLV

4 p.m. - LIU vs. SUU

7 p.m. - UNLV vs. BYU 


No. 15 Brigham Young University Cougars (0-0, 0-0 West Coast Conference)

  • BYU is ranked No. 15 in the AVCA preseason poll released 8/17
  • Finished 2020-21 season ranked No. 15
  • The Cougars went 15-1 in conference play to finish on top of the WCC 
  • Since NCAA play began in 1981, the Cougars are 33-7 in season openers
  • The 2021 team features four 2020-21 All-Americans: Taylen Ballard-Nixon, Whitney Bower, Kennedy Eschenberg and transfer Kenzie Koerber
  • 2018 WCC Player of the Year Heather Gneiting returns to the court after serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Long Island University Sharks (0-0, 0-0 North East Conference)

  • LIU was voted second in the 2021 NEC preseason poll
  • The Sharks finished the 2020-21 season in the first round of the NCAA tournament, closing the season 8-6 overall and 8-4 in conference play
  • The 2021 roster features all three All-NEC honorees from last season 

Southern Utah University Thunderbirds (0-0, 0-0 Big Sky)

  • The Thunderbirds are slated at No. 7 in the Big Sky Conference preseason poll
  • SUU finished its 2021 spring season with a 9-8 overall record, the highest winning percentage in program history (.529).
  • First-year head coach Kacey Nady was announced as new the head coach Aug. 5 

University of Nevada Las Vegas Rebels (0-0, 0-0 Mountain West)

  • For the first time in program history the Rebels have been voted No. 1 in the Mountain West Conference preseason poll
  • Outside hitter Mariena Hayden is the 2021 preseason Conference Player of the Year
  • The Rebels went 12-0 in MWC play last season, taking home the regular-season title 
  • UNLV finished the 2020-21 spring season ranked No. 27


The following games will be available only on the BYUtv App:

Aug. 27 UNLV vs .LIU

Aug. 28 SUU vs. UNLV

Aug 28. LIU vs. SUU

The following games will be available on BYUtv and the BYUtv App:

Aug. 27 BYU vs. SUU

Aug. 27 BYU vs. LIU

Aug. 28 BYU vs. UNLV


Only 7 p.m. games will require tickets. Purchase your tickets online via byutickets.com.


Consistent with current Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and BYU requirements, BYU Athletics will require masks in indoor venues when physical distancing isn’t maintained. This includes a requirement for those attending indoor athletic events, such as volleyball in the Smith Fieldhouse and inside the loges at LaVell Edwards Stadium. Wearing a mask will be required for entry to indoor BYU venues. Masks will not be required for outdoor BYU venues.

BYU strongly urges students, employees and campus guests to follow recent counsel from the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to get vaccinated and wear masks.

The university will continue to monitor the situation and will reevaluate mask requirements at the end of September based on several factors including the immunization rate of the campus community, COVID-19 transmission and hospitalization rates, and guidance from health and government officials.