Surging Cougars Defeat Cowgirls in Five

Junior setter Karina Puikkonen set a career-high dishing out 69 assists and tied a career-high with 11 kills to lead the high-octane BYU attack in a win at Wyoming (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

LARAMIE -- One day after Wyoming swept No. 16 Utah, the BYU women's volleyball team walked into the MultiPurpose Gym Saturday, and for the second consecutive night came out on top of a five-game thriller 33-31, 16-30, 30-23, 20-30, 15-11. The Cougars improve their Mountain West Conference record to 4-3 and 9-12 overall, while the Cowgirls drop to 3-4 MWC and 17-5 overall.

"This was a total team effort," BYU coach Karen Lamb said. "Wyoming is a solid team that is playing great volleyball. We're improving our consistency and finding ways to win, though."

The match was a display of stellar offensive play, with numerous career-highs achieved by the Cougars, as BYU hit .330 and Wyoming would hit .342. The Cougars had an advantage in kills with an 84-74 edge.

Game one would be a precursor to how the match would see-saw all night. Wyoming enjoyed its largest lead of the game at 12-9, but BYU stormed back with one of its most impressive runs of the season, taking 10 of the next 12 points, to enjoy a 19-14 lead. The lead was short-lived, however, as the Cowgirls went on an 8-3 run to tie the game at 22-22. The teams traded points until BYU pulled away late for the win.

Wyoming came back in game two with its best offensive output for the match hitting .542 while stifling the Cougars into hitting .162. The Cowgirls were powered by a 15-2 run, which was keyed by a 9-0 run.

Game three was an offensive show as Wyoming hit .438, but BYU played its most impressive game of the season offensively in racking up 26 kills and hitting .590. BYU was staunch down the stretch as it scored eight of the last nine points.

The Cowgirls stayed alive in the fourth game and took hold of the momentum as they took a game that they led until the Cougars tied it at 22-22. It was point-for-point from that time, but Wyoming managed to take the game.

Like the previous night at Colorado State, BYU took control of the fifth game and didn't look back, as it hit .571 while holding Wyoming to a match-low .118 attack percentage.

"I'm really proud of our team," Lamb said. "We won both of our matches this week, but most importantly we found ways to win and this team is starting to really believe in itself. We're making plays at crucial times in matches."

Junior setter Karina Puikkonen tossed up a career-high 69 assists and tied a career-high with 11 kills, for her fourth double-double of the season, as she paced the high-octane Cougar attack.

Sophomore outside hitter April Varner put down a career-high 23 kills and senior right side hitter Allison Larson provided career-highs of 18 kills and a .500 attack percentage, to account for almost half of BYU's kills.

In her second match since returning from a broken foot, junior middle blocker Laura Nielsen continued her difference-making play in the Cougar lineup as she tied a career-high with 11 kills, set on Friday against the Rams. She also had a team-high four blocks and two digs.

Other Cougars tying career-highs include Michelle Mahaffey with two service aces, Sahara Castillo with three service aces and Kim Wilson with 13 kills.

The Cowgirls were led by Michele Rauter who had a match-high 24 kills to go with 12 digs for a double-double. Sara Maytorena also had a double-double with 20 kills and a career-high 10 blocks.

With the win BYU improves its all-time record over Wyoming to 51-3. The next match-up between the two teams will be Nov. 15 in Provo, Utah at 7 p.m.

BYU will return to Provo to host UNLV Friday and San Diego State Saturday. Both matches will be held in the Smith Fieldhouse and are scheduled for 7 p.m.

Volleyball Box Score

MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE VOLLEYBALL

BYU vs Wyoming (Oct 19, 2002 at Laramie, Wyoming)

BYU | ATTACK |SET| SERVE |SRV|DEF| BLOCK |GEN

## Name GP| K E TA PCT| A| SA SE| RE|DIG|BS BA BE|BHE

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

2 PUIKKONEN, Karina... 5| 11 3 19 .421| 69| 1 1| 0| 2| 0 0 0| 0

3 VARNER, April....... 5| 23 14 55 .164| 1| 0 2| 2| 5| 0 2 0| 0

5 CASTILLO, Sahara.... 5| 0 0 0 .000| 1| 3 5| 0| 9| 0 0 0| 0

8 BOWERS, Carrie...... 5| 8 1 23 .304| 0| 2 1| 0| 1| 0 0 0| 0

17 MAHAFFEY, Michelle.. 5| 0 0 0 .000| 2| 2 1| 1| 10| 0 0 0| 0

18 NIELSEN, Laura...... 5| 11 3 18 .444| 0| 0 0| 0| 2| 0 4 0| 0

7 LARSON, Allison..... 5| 18 1 34 .500| 0| 0 1| 0| 0| 0 2 0| 0

12 CRABBE, Uila........ 5| 0 0 0 .000| 1| 0 0| 5| 11| 0 0 0| 0

15 WILSON, Kimberly.... 5| 13 4 27 .333| 0| 0 0| 0| 1| 0 0 0| 0

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Totals.............. 5| 84 26 176 .330| 74| 8 11| 8| 41| 0 8 0| 0

TEAM ATTACK PER GAME TOTAL TEAM BLOCKS: 4.0

Game K E TA Pct

1 22 8 48 .292 GAME SCORES 1 2 3 4 5 TEAM RECORDS

2 12 7 31 .161 BYU................. 33 16 30 29 15 9-12 (4-3 MWC)

3 26 3 39 .590 Wyoming............. 31 30 23 31 11 17-5 (3-4 MWC)

4 15 7 44 .182

5 9 1 14 .571

Wyoming | ATTACK |SET| SERVE |SRV|DEF| BLOCK |GEN

## Name GP| K E TA PCT| A| SA SE| RE|DIG|BS BA BE|BHE

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

1 DOMAN, Amy.......... 5| 4 0 7 .571| 64| 0 0| 0| 3| 0 2 0| 0

2 RAUTER, Michele..... 5| 24 9 43 .349| 0| 1 1| 1| 12| 1 0 0| 0

4 ROSLUND, Jill....... 5| 8 0 14 .571| 0| 5 0| 0| 2| 0 4 0| 0

9 MAYTORENA, Sara..... 5| 20 6 41 .341| 2| 1 0| 0| 5| 0 10 0| 0

13 POWERS, Leah........ 5| 8 1 18 .389| 0| 0 2| 1| 4| 0 9 0| 0

14 LATIMER, Vanessa.... 5| 1 2 7 -.143| 1| 1 1| 2| 19| 0 0 0| 0

6 MILLER, Amanda...... 5| 0 0 0 .000| 0| 0 0| 4| 8| 0 0 0| 0

7 ROEBKEN, Lindsey.... 5| 9 5 19 .211| 0| 0 0| 0| 0| 0 1 0| 0

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Totals.............. 5| 74 23 149 .342| 67| 8 4| 8| 53| 1 26 0| 0

TEAM ATTACK PER GAME TOTAL TEAM BLOCKS: 14.0

Game K E TA Pct

1 15 6 35 .257 Site: Laramie, Wyoming (MultiPurpose Gym)

2 15 2 24 .542 Date: Oct 19, 2002 Attend: 925 Time: 2:10

3 16 2 32 .438 Referees: Kim Pickering, Donna Wigton

4 20 7 41 .317

5 8 6 17 .118

Tags: Results