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.