Cougars suffer loss in season opener

(Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

BOWLING GREEN, Ohio – The BYU women’s volleyball team battled against No. 25 Creighton in a 3-1 (25-22, 20-25, 19-25, 15-25) loss during the team’s season opener on Friday, the first match of the Hampton Inn Invitational.

“It was good to finally get out and compete,” BYU head coach Shawn Olmstead said. “We played really well during the first set, but our passing fell apart after that. We lost our composure and allowed them to control the match.”

Sophomore Alexa Gray and junior Tambre Haddock led the Cougars with 11 kills each. Sophomore Camry Godfrey supported at setter with 33 assists and junior Tia Withers Welling led the back row with 12 digs. Senior Kathryn LeCheminant led the Cougars in the front with four blocks.

Both teams took turns exchanging points in the beginning of the first set before BYU went on a 9-1 run to take a 13-4 lead. Creighton battled back late in the set, coming within two points of BYU at 24-22. Amy Boswell ended the rally with a kill to give the cougars a 25-23 win.

Creighton took a quick 2-0 lead in the second set before BYU was able to battle back to tie the score at 7-7. The Bluejays then went on a quick 4-0 run, forcing a Cougar timeout. A pair of kills by senior Kathryn LeCheminant got BYU back in the set, allowing the Cougars to get within two points, 13-11. It wasn’t enough to stop Creighton, as the Bluejays went on to take the set 25-20.

The third set brought a battle of kills early on as both teams exchanged points, tying the set 6-6. BYU fell behind soon after at 20-13 on the heels of a 7-1 run by Creighton. The Cougars tried to stage a comeback after two timeouts, but they fell short as the Bluejays took the third set 25-19.

The Cougars’ only lead of the final set came with a Boswell kill to starts things off. BYU couldn’t contain its errors as Creighton began to pull away with a seven-point lead on BYU, 14-7. The Bluejays didn’t look back as they took the set 25-15.

The Cougars meet Marquette in the second match on Day 2 of the Hampton Inn Invitational on Saturday. The two teams face off at 12:30 p.m. EDT. Live stats are available for the match on the schedule page. BYU will also face invitational host Bowling Green State on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. EDT.

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