The Cougars are just one win away from clinching the MWC title outright for the first time since 1999. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
PROVO -- The Cougars will wrap up the regular season this weekend as they travel south to take on San Diego State Friday night and UNLV on Saturday night. At 21-2 overall and 12-2 in the Mountain West Conference, No. 22 BYU has already secured at least a share of the regular-season league title but needs one more win to take home the crown outright and earn the No. 1 seed in next week's MWC Tournament.
"Our last regular-season road trip is an important weekend for our volleyball program," said BYU head coach Jason Watson. "This week every conference team is playing for seeding in the MWC Tournament, making each match all the more important. Our challenge will be to play well on the road against two very good volleyball programs."
Several teams will be jockeying for position this weekend, including the Rebels, who enter the weekend in a tie for second place with Utah at 10-4 in league play. The Utes and Rebels will meet on Friday night. Colorado State is also lurking in the shadows with a 9-4 league record after earning wins over BYU and Utah last weekend. San Diego State is currently in fifth place with a 7-7 MWC mark and needs to win at least one weekend match in order to maintain its hold on the No. 5 seed.
BYU defeated both the Aztecs and Rebels earlier this season, sweeping San Diego State and beating UNLV in four games in Provo. The Cougars own a 31-15 series advantage over SDSU and are 16-2 all-time against the Rebels.
Junior middle blocker Lindsy Hartsock leads the nation this year with a .460 hitting percentage. She is also sixth in the league in blocks, averaging 1.20 per game. Senior setter Lauren Richards Evans leads the conference and is 23rd in the nation in assists with 13.07 per game. The sophomore outside-hitting duo of Chelsea Goodman and Erica Lott adds a one-two punch as they are first and second in the conference, respectively, in kills per game.
Fans of the Cougars can catch all of the action of both matches via live stats available on the schedule page of the BYU women's volleyball homepage at http://www.byucougars.com/volleyball_w/. Both contests begin at 7 p.m. PST.