Senior Rachel Dyer finished her BYU career with 10 kills on .500 hitting against Wyoming. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)
PROVO -- The BYU women’s volleyball team said goodbye to its two seniors in style Saturday as Rachel Dyer and Bryn Porter helped lead the Cougars to victory over Wyoming (25-19, 25-20, 25-16). With a win over No. 15 Colorado State on Thursday and the sweep of the Cowgirls, BYU finishes the 2008 season with a 14-12 overall record and 7-9 Mountain West Conference mark.
“Not many teams get to finish the year with a win so I’m really proud that we got to do that,” said BYU head coach Shay Goulding. “We executed the game plan really well tonight.”
Fittingly, Dyer ended her BYU career tying for the team lead in kills with 10 while hitting .500 for the match and also tying for team-high honors with five blocks. Porter was right behind with seven kills on .316 hitting while picking up seven digs. Junior Kayla Walker posted her seventh double-double of the year with 10 kills and 12 digs to lead BYU. Sophomore Christina Measom tallied a career-high five rejections. BYU hit a solid .356 on the night while holding Wyoming to just .115 hitting.
“We definitely ended better than we started, which is something I’ve always tried to do,” said Dyer. “It’s sad to leave behind a chapter of my life, but I’m really grateful for the experiences I’ve had here.”
“I’m proud to have been a part of the tradition of volleyball here at BYU,” said Porter. “I’m grateful for the opportunities that have been given to me.”
The Cougars scored the first point of the match on a kill from Measom and kept pushing to a 7-2 lead. However, a 6-0 Wyoming run turned the set around in the early going. Porter finally got the sideout with a winner down the line to knot the score at 8-8, but the Cowgirls proved resilient with a 5-1 spurt to go up 13-10 as the Cougar hitting errors mounted. Another shot from Measom sparked three straight BYU points, and moments later, the Cougars retook the lead at 17-16 on a setter dump from Kiana Rogers that found the hardwood. From there, BYU cruised to a 25-19 win, posting five blocks in the set.
Back-to-back rejections from Dyer and Measom got the Cougars going in the second set as they ran out to a 4-0 lead. Wyoming came back to cut the deficit to two points three separate times at 8-6, 11-9 and 13-11, but BYU responded on each occasion to maintain the lead. Measom’s incredible play continued, giving Cougar fans a glimpse of what to expect next season from the sophomore, as she put down a cross-court winner to spark a 5-0 BYU run. The momentum stayed with the Cougars to a 25-20 victory as they hit .371 in the frame.
Wyoming struck first in set three, but Walker hit a bomb down the line on the next point to set the tone for the frame. Three hitting errors in the first six points doomed the Cowgirls. Despite continued pressure from a Wyoming team with its back against the wall, the Cougars had the answer to every Cowgirl push. BYU led by as many as nine points and hit .517 in the set while recording a 25-16 win.
“I’m really excited for next season,” said Goulding. “I feel a sense of urgency to get on it and make some plans for next year. We’re going to have an extremely talented team, and we’re excited to tie into the legacy these two seniors are leaving.”