Cougars break into top-25 poll

(Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

PROVO, Utah—For the first time since the 2007 season, the BYU women’s volleyball team received a top-25 ranking in the AVCA Coaches’ Poll, coming in at No. 21.

"I'm excited for the girls and our program," head coach Shawn Olmstead said. "They have definitely put in the work and the results have shown that. Most importantly, we understand this is only week 2 and there is a lot of work ahead of us, so it's crucial that we stay focused on what we have been doing."

The team received 375 votes in the poll after defeating Colorado State (No. 24 last week) and Tennessee (No. 14 last week) Saturday. The Cougars won both matches in four sets to take the Shocker Volleyball Classic title, bumping CSU out of the rankings.

The West Coast Conference now has three schools in the top-25 poll, with Pepperdine ranked No. 12 and San Diego ranked No. 17.

Junior opposite hitter Jennifer Hamson led the team to the tournament victory. She tallied a career-high 25 kills against the host, Wichita State, and also had 20 kills against CSU for 54 total during the weekend.

Now 6-0 on the season, the Cougars are enjoying their best start since 2006, when the team went 6-0 before losing to Kansas in the Jayhawk Invitational.

BYU hosts its own invitational Friday and Saturday. Cougar Nation can see the No. 21 team in action Friday at 7 p.m. MDT in its home opener against rival University of Utah. The match against Utah will also be broadcast on BYUtv. Saturday, the Cougars face Bowling Green at noon and Portland State at 7 p.m. 

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