East HPER Building Salt Lake City UT 84112
SALT LAKE CITY (Sept. 10, 2011)—The BYU women’s volleyball team took the Deseret First Duel trophy to advance BYU’s overall Duel score to 6-0 with a 3-0 (25-20, 25-17, 25-14) victory against Utah in the Utah Invitational Saturday.
The win also gave the Cougars (9-2) their second tournament title of the season and increased their win streak to eight straight matches.
"We played pretty well overall," BYU head coach Shawn Olmstead said. "There were times when we could have been better, but we finished off on a really high note. Overall, you couldn't ask for anything more."
Jennifer Hamson once again led the team with 15 kills and 11 digs. Christie Carpenter had seven kills, as did Casey Thurston. Heather Hannemann also had her second double-double of the tournament with 34 assists and 10 digs. Kendalyn Hartsock recorded 14 digs and Nicole Warner set a new season-high of nine blocks.
Back-and-forth scoring began the match. The Utes (5-3) took the first lead on back-to-back aces, but the Cougars rallied to jump ahead after a 4-4 tie. BYU stayed in the lead for its next five points until Utah caught up at 9-9 on another ace from Lea Adolph. Three more ties passed before BYU broke away again for a 16-13 lead. Hamson hammered out five kills in the first game, hitting 100 percent to give BYU the momentum it needed. The Cougars advanced on Utah errors, but the Utes stayed within three until a 4-0 streak gave the set to BYU 25-20.
BYU didn’t give Utah time to regroup, going up 5-2 with the help of Carpenter’s aces and a kill from Hamson. Middle blocker Kathryn LeCheminant fueled a 5-1 run that put BYU ahead 10-5 with two kills. Hamson continued to prove too much for the Utes to handle, packing in three kills to help the Cougars to a 17-7 lead. Utah tried to get back in rhythm, but only managed to cut BYU’s lead to seven before senior outside hitter Casey Thurston took the 25-17 set on a kill. Hamson reached double figures in kills during the second set, adding five more to her total.
The Cougars wavered under a 4-1 Utah drive before Thurston tied the set at 4-4. A Hamson-Warner block swept BYU past the Utes and sparked four more points for the Cougars for a 10-5 lead. Hamson led the charge with three straight kills and a block, putting the Cougar victory in sight. Hamson threw down an ace to win the set, match and tournament for BYU.
Hamson and Hannemann scored all-tournament honors and Carpenter was named tournament MVP.
The Cougars take on in-state opponent Utah State Tuesday at 7 p.m. in Logan, Utah.
BYU Seeks to Continue Win Streak
PROVO, Utah—After securing first place in the Varney’s Invitational, the BYU women’s volleyball team takes on BYU-Hawaii Wednesday before setting out for the Utah Invitational in Salt Lake City.
“This is an exciting week for us in that we have a chance to compete against four different opponents in four days,” BYU head coach Shawn Olmstead said. “Our focus will be on each individual opponent as things progress. We look forward to the challenge this presents and can’t wait to get going.”
The Cougars (5-2) will compete against UC Riverside (1-6) at 5 p.m. Friday, Eastern Michigan (6-1) at 10 a.m. Saturday and will face Utah (4-2) in the Deseret First Duel match at 7 p.m. Saturday. The match is the second Duel event of the year. BYU took a 3-0 lead with a win in women’s soccer.
BYU is ready for action and seeking to continue its four-match winning streak after defeating Kansas State for the Varney’s Invitational title. Sophomore opposite hitter Jennifer Hamson recorded 50 kills on the weekend at .306 hitting, earning her the tournament MVP selection. She and junior middle blocker Nicole Warner were named to the all-tournament team.
Starting off the week, the Cougars welcome the Seasiders to the Smith Fieldhouse at 7 p.m. Wednesday for a BYUtv-televised match. The Seasiders are 3-0 on the season, with wins against Alaska-Anchorage, Alaska-Fairbanks and Weber State. Shih Ting Chen leads the Seasiders in kills with 52 on the season and digs with 50.
UC Riverside is led in kills by Amanda Vialpando with 86 and 65 digs. Megan Patterson leads in digs with 74. The Highlanders enter the tournament on a four-match losing streak after a tough USD Invitational in San Diego over the weekend.
Six straight victories, including four sweeps, make Eastern Michigan the team to beat in the invitational after taking second in the Notre Dame Invitational and first in the IUPUI Tournament. Rachel Iaquaniello leads the Eagles with 112 kills. Last season Iaquaniello recorded the second-highest season kills in Eastern Michigan history with 515. Haley Stein leads in digs with 149 and Kristen Baker leads in blocks with 26.
The Utes claimed first place in last weekend’s Yale Invitational after defeating the host 3-1 in the final match of the tournament. Leading Utah, Morgan Odale has recorded 74 kills so far and Yale Invitational co-MVP Erin Redd has 56 with 32 blocks.
For links to BYUtv’s website and live stats, click HERE.