No. 1 BYU Falls in Five Sets

Robby Stowell recorded a career-high 22 kills Saturday night. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)

PROVO -- No. 1 BYU (9-1, 5-1) didn't have enough to complete the weekend sweep against No. 2 UC Irvine (11-2, 6-2) losing 3-2, as the Cougars went the distance for the first time this season 30-26, 23-30, 31-33, 31-29 and 8-15. Robby Stowell led BYU with a career-high 22 kills, while Ivan Perez recorded 20 kills for the night.

"Robby played nice," said BYU co-head coach Ryan Millar. "So far this season he's been great for us, and tonight was no exception."

The individual effort notwithstanding, it was the team's 33 hitting errors that Millar focused on in the post-game press conference.

"We can't make 33 hitting errors and expect to win against a team like that," Millar said. "This is a nice wake-up call for the guys. I hope alarms are going off and bells are ringing. Tonight [UCI] outplayed us, plain and simple."

After the first seven points were scored in set one, UCI was ahead 4-3. It would prove to be the team's last lead of the set, as a Stowell kill that put BYU up 6-5 ended up giving the Cougars the lead for good. Stowell's kill sparked a 7-0 run, and UCI was unable to recover from the deficit as BYU led by as many seven points four different times. Stowell led the charge, putting away seven kills during the 30-26 victory.

For the first time all weekend, the Anteaters were able to put a set together to capture the win taking set two 30-23. A set in which BYU never led, the Cougars did not get to within five points of UCI after stumbling to the short end of a 13-18 score. BYU couldn't contain senior Jayson Jablonsky, as the reigning National Player of the Year recorded eight kills in the set. The Cougars compounded Jablonsky's effort by committing five service errors.

With the match tied at one set apiece both teams came out of the break fired up, and it showed on the court. The set featured 16 ties. After BYU took a 9-8 lead, Yosleyder Cala, who finished with 16 kills, soared through the air from the right side of the net and crushed a thunderous kill to increase the lead to two. The Cougars' advantage didn't hold up for long, as moments later the score was knotted even once again 10-10. The frenzied pace continued until UCI used a 3-0 run to take an 18-14 lead -- the largest of the game to that point. BYU regrouped and rallied to square things back up at 23-all.

As the intensity of the game grew, so did the intensity of the players. Perez, like a basketball player dunking on a fast break, stormed down the lane and flushed a kill that went untouched toward UCI's court, giving BYU a 25-24 lead. Not to be outdone, Cala connected on a spike that bounced off Anteater Brent Asuka and out of bounds for the Cougars' 28th point. However, it was UCI that pulled out the victory breaking a 31-31 tie with two consecutive points.

Trailing two sets to one, BYU controlled the fourth set, never trailing and allowing UCI to tie the score only three times. Fueled by Stowell's eight kills in the set, BYU built a lead of 26-20. The Anteaters went on a 4-1 run prompting BYU co-head coaches Millar and Shawn Patchell to take a time out. Coming out of the brief intermission, UCI evened the score at 29. The Cougars then closed out the set by the final margin of 31-29. Rodnei Santos served up the winning ace.

Despite the comeback, BYU ran out of gas and fell in the fifth and final match 8-15.

"In the fifth set, [UCI] came out with fire," Millar said, "and we made some bad choices."

BYU travels to Riverside, Calif., to take on Cal Baptist Tuesday, Feb. 13. Game time is set for 7 p.m.

Volleyball Box Score

#2 UC Irvine vs #1 BYU Cougars (Feb 03, 2007 at Provo, Utah)

UC Irvine | ATTACK |SET| SERVE |SRV|DEF| BLOCK |GEN

## Name GP| K E TA PCT| A| SA SE| RE|DIG|BS BA BE|BHE

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

1 Steller, Jon........ 1| 1 3 6 -.333| 0| 0 1| 0| 0| 0 0 0| 0

7 Thornton, Brian..... 5| 1 1 5 .000| 58| 0 2| 0| 3| 0 3 0| 0

11 Jablonsky, Jayson... 5| 21 5 42 .381| 1| 2 6| 0| 10| 0 2 0| 0

13 Webber, Matt........ 5| 14 3 28 .393| 0| 2 2| 1| 2| 2 6 0| 0

15 Smith, David........ 5| 10 1 16 .562| 1| 0 1| 0| 1| 0 10 2| 0

21 Harrell, Aaron...... 5| 13 5 28 .286| 1| 0 1| 0| 5| 2 3 0| 0

3 Ammerman, Ryan...... 4| 0 0 0 .000| 3| 0 0| 0| 0| 0 2 0| 0

5 Reinholm, Cole...... 5| 8 5 19 .158| 0| 1 4| 3| 6| 0 1 0| 0

6 Spittle, Nick....... 4| 0 0 0 .000| 0| 0 0| 0| 1| 0 0 0| 0

8 Asuka, Brent........ 5| 0 0 0 .000| 0| 0 0| 0| 4| 0 0 0| 0

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Totals.............. 5| 68 23 144 .312| 64| 5 17| 4| 32| 4 27 2| 0

TEAM ATTACK PER GAME TOTAL TEAM BLOCKS: 17.5

Game K E TA Pct

1 11 7 30 .133 GAME SCORES 1 2 3 4 5 TEAM RECORDS

2 17 2 27 .556 UC Irvine........... (3) 24 30 33 29 15 11-2; 6-2 MPSF

3 15 7 36 .222 BYU Cougars......... (2) 30 23 31 31 8 9-1;5-1; MPSF

4 17 6 36 .306

5 8 1 15 .467

BYU Cougars | ATTACK |SET| SERVE |SRV|DEF| BLOCK |GEN

## Name GP| K E TA PCT| A| SA SE| RE|DIG|BS BA BE|BHE

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

1 CALA, Yosleyder..... 5| 16 9 34 .206| 2| 0 7| 2| 6| 0 1 1| 0

2 SANTOS, Rodnei...... 5| 11 4 18 .389| 2| 1 1| 0| 1| 1 4 0| 0

8 PEREZ, Ivan......... 5| 20 10 44 .227| 2| 1 4| 3| 6| 0 4 0| 0

11 HOLMES, Russell..... 5| 9 1 17 .471| 0| 0 3| 0| 1| 1 7 0| 0

13 STOWELL, Robby...... 5| 22 9 44 .295| 0| 2 2| 0| 6| 0 3 1| 0

14 PEREZ, Yamil........ 5| 1 0 2 .500| 72| 0 4| 0| 6| 1 2 2| 0

5 COX, Scott.......... 5| 0 0 0 .000| 0| 0 1| 0| 0| 0 0 0| 0

6 SILVA, Joel......... 5| 0 0 0 .000| 0| 0 0| 0| 11| 0 0 0| 0

7 SORENSEN, Trent..... 5| 0 0 0 .000| 0| 0 0| 0| 0| 0 1 0| 0

12 POMPEI, Andy........ 1| 0 0 0 .000| 0| 0 0| 0| 0| 0 0 0| 0

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Totals.............. 5| 79 33 159 .289| 78| 4 22| 5| 37| 3 22 4| 0

TEAM ATTACK PER GAME TOTAL TEAM BLOCKS: 14.0

Game K E TA Pct

1 18 5 35 .371 Site: Provo, Utah (Smith Fieldhouse)

2 15 5 27 .370 Date: Feb 03, 2007 Attend: 5603 Time: 2H 45

3 20 10 39 .256 Referees: TOM GIVEN, LES CALLES, MAEATINI

4 20 7 38 .342

5 6 6 20 .000

Tags: Results