Brigham Young University
Oct 21 | 07:00 PM
0 - 3
University of San Diego
Jenny Craig Pavilion

Jenny Craig Pavilion San Diego CA 92110

Cameron Muh | Posted: 21 Oct 2022 | Updated: 3 Nov 2022
Cameron Muh

No. 17 Cougars fall to No. 4 San Diego in three sets

Erin Livingston on the attack against Duke

SAN DIEGO — No. 17 BYU women’s volleyball hung around but were ultimately swept by No. 4 San Diego, 3-0 (20-25, 21-25, 18-25) at Jenny Craig Pavilion on Friday night. 


Erin Livingston and Heather Gneiting each finished with double-digit kills, totaling 11 and 10, respectively. Gneiting also led the team with seven total blocks, including two solo roofs to get her to 50 solo blocks on her career, a mark tied for second in the rally scoring era at BYU. 

Whitney Bower dished out 26 assists and Aria McComber finished with a team and season-high 18 digs. As a team, the Cougars (14-5, 7-2 WCC) hit .182 to the Toreros .288. BYU out-blocked San Diego, 11 to 6.5, but the Toreros’ 49 kills to the Cougars’ 36 were a difference maker in the match.  

Set 1
Gneiting got things started with a quick hitter in the middle before giving the Cougars a 2-1 lead off a slide kill. San Diego got ahead 7-4, but a solo block by Whitney Llarenas and another Gneiting kill made it 8-7, Toreros. 

A 3-0 San Diego run had BYU down by four, leading to its first timeout. Two Elyse Stowell kills, sandwiched by a Gneiting solo stuff were followed up by a Stowell-Gneiting double block and a Gneiting slide kill, tying the opening set at 12. 

The Toreros took four of the next five points, but Gneiting landed a kill off the block and Livingston sent a kill into the center of the court to pull within one, at 16-15. Another 3-0 San Diego run forced the Cougars’ second timeout. 

Kills by Bower, Livingston and Grimmer had BYU trailing 21-18, but the Toreros took four of the next six points to win the set, 25-20.

Set 2
The Cougars got down 6-2 in the early going and took their first timeout. A pair of San Diego errors and kills by Stowell and Livingston then helped BYU tie things up at 7. Llarenas slammed a slide, Grimmer put down a kill and Gneiting got another slide kill as the two teams began trading points. 

Livingston went cross-court to even the set at 11 before a Torero run had the Cougars down 17-14. Bower and Gneiting combined for back-to-back double blocks as BYU fought back, knotting the set at 18-apiece on a Gneiting slide kill.

Calling their second timeout behind 20-18, the Cougars got a Livingston kill off the block and a San Diego error to come within one, at 21-20. The Toreros would win four of the next five points, however, to win the set, 25-21, and take a commanding 2-0 match lead.

Set 3
Trailing 8-3 to begin the third, BYU took its first timeout. The Cougars got kills from Livingston and Sophia Callahan, making it 10-6, USD, after a Torero service error. Trailing 14-7, BYU took its second and final timeout. 

San Diego reeled off six-straight to go ahead 17-7, but the Cougars answered with a 4-0 run of their own, led by kills from Gneiting and Knudsen, and a solo block by Gneiting, the 50th of her career, forcing a Torero timeout.

With two double blocks, a Gneiting ace and kills from Livingston and Callahan, BYU drew within three, at 19-16, but San Diego closed the set on a 6-2 run to take the third set, 25-18, and sweep the match.

The Cougars will return home after three games on the road, hosting Gonzaga and Portland at the Smith Fieldhouse next week. Both matches will be televised on BYUtv and streamed on the BYUtv app.


Cameron Muh | Posted: 19 Oct 2022 | Updated: 1 Nov 2022
Cameron Muh

Top-20 matchup with No. 4 San Diego up next for No. 17 BYU

Elyse Stowell, Heather Gneiting and Whitney Bower await the serve

PROVO, Utah — Playing its third road game in a row, No. 17 BYU women’s volleyball will travel to San Diego to take on the fourth-ranked Toreros in its lone match this week.

The Cougars suffered their first loss in in West Coast Conference (WCC) play last week, dropping a five-setter at Pacific and snapping a nine-game win streak. Outside hitter Erin Livingston finished with a team-high 18 kills in the match against the Tigers, and has led the team in kills in 15 of 18 matches. 

BYU dropped five spots in this week's American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) poll to No. 17. Dating back to the final poll of the 2013 season, the Cougars have been ranked in the top-17 for 135-consecutive polls.

No. 17 BYU @ No. 4 San Diego

Four of the last five matchups between the two teams have come when both teams were ranked in the AVCA poll. The Cougars have won the last four matchups, sweeping the Toreros in Provo and winning 3-1 in San Diego both times.

BYU head coach Heather Olmstead is 10-4 against San Diego during her tenure, posting a 5-2 record in the Smith Fieldhouse and at Jenny Craig Pavilion. 

Hitting .304 on the season, the Cougars rank sixth nationally in team hitting percentage. They're also No. 21 in in kills per set (13.89) and No. 24 in assists per set (12.89). All three statistical marks remain atop the WCC. 

Middle blocker Whitney Llarenas continues to improve her season hitting percentage, upping it to .426, the fifth-best percentage in the country and best in conference. Livingston is averaging 3.98 kills per set, good for No. 44 nationally, while setter Whitney Bower is dishing out 10.24 assists per set, which ranks No. 49. 

San Diego (17-1, 8-0 WCC)

  • The Toreros boast a 14-game win streak, going 8-0 in conference play thus far, including wins at Pacific and Saint Mary's last week
  • San Diego opened the season with a five-set win against then-No. 6 Pitt, and have also swept then-No. 8 Ohio State
  • Playing in a Louisville tournament the second week of the season, the Toreros' lone loss this season was at the then-No. 3 Cardinals, 3-1
  • Katie Lukes leads San Diego in kills with 232. Grace Frohling and Breanna Edwards follow up Lukes with 187 and 185 kills, respectively.
  • Transfer setter Gabby Blossom has totaled 683 assists on the year, and also shares the team lead for service aces (20) with Frohling
  • Annie Benbow paces the Toreros with 224 digs, and Leyla Blackwell leads San Diego at the net, totaling 89 blocks
  • Jennifer Petrie has been head coach of the Toreros for 24 years, going 464-164 during that time
  • BYU leads the all-time series with San Diego, 14-10. The Cougars have won both matchups in the last two seasons.

The Cougars will return home after their quick trip to San Diego, hosting Gonzaga and Portland in WCC matches at the Smith Fieldhouse next week. Both matches will be televised on BYUtv and streamed on the BYUtv app. 

File Attachments