BYU's looks to keep up its offensive dominance as the Cougars head on the road for the third time in March. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
PROVO -- After spending most of the month of March playing in Southern California, BYU wraps up its six-match road swing as the Cougars head to Northridge to play Cal. State Northridge in a pair of matches this weekend. Thus far, BYU has won each of its four road matches on the road trip including a pair of sweeps at UC Santa Barbara two weeks ago. The Cougars have won six straight matches overall.
The BYU-Cal. State Northridge series has been one of dominating streaks. The Cougars currently hold a 20-14 series advantage over the Matadors including an 8-7 record in Northridge. The series began with CSUN dominating the Cougars over the first five years of BYU's competition at the NCAA level. The Matadors won the first seven matches the two teams played and 10 of the first 13 overall.
In 1997, the series advantage began to tilt BYU's way. Beginning in the 1997 season, BYU won 12 consecutivbe matches that carried over until CS Northridge beat BYU on Mar. 22, 2003. Last season the Cougars swept the two matches over the Matadores for the first time since the 2002 season.
LUCKY NUMBER .300
BYU is a perfect 15-0 this season in matches that they hit over .300. Conversely, the Cougars are 0-4 in matches where they hit under .300.
BYU IN THE MPSF TOURNAMENT
Since 1993, BYU has qualified for the MPSF postseason tournament in 12 of 13 seasons including nine 10 consecutive trips. The Cougars all-time recording the MPSF tournament is 15-10. BYU has won the MPSF tournament three times and hold an 8-5 record in the first round, 4-4 record in the semifinals and a perfect 3-0 record in tournament finals. BYU has lost in the first round of the MPSF tourney in two consecutive seasons including a 3-1 setback to Long Beach State last year. The Cougars won consecutive MPSF tournament championships in 2003 and 2004.
EVERY THREE YEARS...
Since BYU's first national championship in 1999, the Cougars have won the NCAA tournament a total of three times (1999, 2001 and 2004). Since the '99 season, BYU has won the NCAA Championship at least once every three years.
BRING OUT THE BROOMS
With the Cougars sweep over Loyola-Chicage Jan. 27, it marked a record sixth consecutive match BYU won in straight sets. Previously the record was in 2001 when the Cougars swept five consecutive matches. The record for sweeps in a season was the 1999, 30-1 National Championship squad that swept 20 matches. With the Cougars sweep over UC Irvine Feb. 2, they upped their record to seven consecutive sweeps. BYU is currently on a three-match streak of sweeps and have swept four of its last six.
BYU's hitting performance in Saturday evening's three-set sweep of USC ranks third all-time in BYU rally scoring history. The Cougars hit .571 (61-9-91) as a team. BYU was led by Yosleyder Cala's .905 (19-0-21) hitting percentage, while Robby Stowell hit .727 (17-1-22). Russell Holmes and Ivan Perez also hit over .600 on the evening. The Cougars all-time best hitting performance was also against USC on Jan. 31, 2001 when BYU hit .655 (42-4-48).
HOLMES RECORD WATCH
Russell Holmes created a wall in the Saturday evening Hawaii match. In the sweep, Holmes knocked down seven block assists and a career-high four block solos in just three sets. The four block solos ranks second alone all-time in BYU history. The Cougars record for block solos is five by Kevin Hambly on Feb. 29, 1992 against Ball State. Holmes is currently second in the nation with 17 block solos. He is just five block solos away from tying the record of 22 held by co-head coach Ryan Millar.
ALL OVER THE PLACE
In BYU's three-set sweep over UC Santa Barbara Mar. 10, the Cougars swung at a .495 mark for the day. Four of BYU's starting five attackers swung at a .500 mark or better. Yosleyder Cala, BYU's team leader in hitting percentage was the only not to hit at least .500 and he hit over .300.