Cougs Take Alumni Down 3-1
PROVO -- Showcasing their abilities for over 300 fans, the BYU men’s volleyball team defeated the Alumni in the annual Alumni match Friday night 3-1.
Junior Robb Stowell led the Cougars in the victory with 15 kills, followed by true freshman Taylor Sander with 12, playing a vital role to win set four for the win. Senior Alex DaPron was also in double-digit kills with 11 on the night.
Starting the night for the Cougars included Futi Tavana, BJ Hiapo, Joe Kauliakamoa, Sander, Stowell, Kevin Sagers and Otavio Souza.
In set one the alumni started off with two-straight points, followed by four-straight Cougar points, two from Stowell. Posting four kills and two back-to-back service aces, Stowell led the Cougars on the attack in set one, winning 25-18 to begin the match.
DaPron led the Cougars in set two with four kills while true freshman Taylor Sander had three kills. A 4-0 run ending at 6-4 gave the Cougars the lead for the remainder of the set, winning 25-18.
After the alumni got warmed up, the score was knotted 14 times in set three, the Alumni eventually coming out on top, 27-25 with a kill by Taylor Evans (‘06) to finish it off. DaPron led the Cougars with seven kills in the third.
After the score was knotted at seven, the alumni posted a 3-0 run to establish a two-point lead. BYU came back with four-straight points off of two Stowell kills and back-to-back triple blocks to give the Cougars the lead at 15-14. Sander lit up the rest of the set, posting seven kills to win the set 25-21, and match 3-1.
The Cougars will next travel to the BYU Las Vegas Tournament Nov. 12-13 held at Las Vegas High School for more pre-season play.
Alumni Match Friday
PROVO -- Cougar fans will have their first chance to preview the 2010-11 BYU men’s volleyball team when it hosts the annual Alumni Match at 7 p.m. in the Smith Fieldhouse on Friday. Admission to the match is free.
“We have a good team coming and they will bring us great competition,” BYU interim head coach Rob Neilson said.
The alumni team will consist of 10 former Cougars, including 2009 starting setter Reed Chilton (’09) and 2009 All-American outside hitter Andrew Stewart (’09). Joining him will be middle blockers Michael Burke (’05) and Cory Carpenter (’04). BYU women’s assistant coach Shawn Olmstead will play libero. Other alumni include Taylor Evans (’06), Mac Wilson (’01), Brian Congelliere (’08), and Casey Patterson (’05) who has played professionally. Four former Cougars were members of National Championship winning teams in 1999, 2001 or 2004.
While the Alumni team has always been very competitive in years past, last year was the first time that the alumni won the match.
The current BYU team returns eight players with starting experience, including All-American middle blocker Futi Tavana, and All-MPSF selections Robb Stowell and Russell Lavaja.
Libero BJ Hiapo, outside hitter Jeff Robinson, outside hitter Kevin Sagers and middle blocker Otavio Souza represent the senior talent.
Twelve of the 20 current roster members return from 2010. Fans will also have a chance to see true freshman Taylor Sander who BYU interim head coach Rob Neilson describes as comparable to BYU Hall-of-Famer Ossie Antonetti.
Friday will warm up the Cougars for the BYU Las Vegas Tournament held at Las Vegas High School Nov. 12-13. In the tournament, BYU will take on Cal Baptist, Grand Canyon University, Lewis, Long Beach State, and UC San Diego.