Fa'agata-Tufuga helps No. 6 BYU past Stanford in five
PROVO, Utah – Storm Fa’agata-Tufuga helped push No. 6 BYU men's volleyball past Stanford in five sets (23-25, 20-25, 25-14, 15-10, 15-12) Saturday night at the Smith Fieldhouse.
“We got off to a slow start tonight,” BYU head coach Shawn Olmstead said. "Stanford really came out swinging with a lot of confidence. After the second set, we wanted to turn the momentum and that's what we did."
Fa’agata-Tufuga led the Cougars with a career-high 16 kills and contributed four blocks and one ace. Brenden Sander added 14 kills and three digs. Price Jarman and Felipe de Brito Ferreira both led the team with six blocks apiece. Leo Durkin added 36 assists and a team-high nine digs in the win.
An ace from Jarman helped BYU (12-4, 5-0 MPSF) to an early 6-3 lead over the Cardinal (3-13, 1-4 MPSF) in the fifth set. The two teams traded blows, but the Cougars picked up set point at 14-10 after a Durkin and Ferreira block. A service error ended the set and match 15-12.
BYU and Stanford traded blows in the first set, with the Cougars taking an early 6-3 lead following blocks from Jarman and Zach Eschenberg in the first set. The Cougars went on a 5-0 run, which Stanford countered with a 7-1 rally, to even the game at 15-15. The two teams went back-and-forth until Stanford pulled away with back-to-back kills to finish the close set 25-23.
An early 3-0 run gave Stanford a 5-2 edge over BYU in the second set. The Cardinal went on a 6-0 run to push ahead 15-7. Stanford secured a double-digit lead, 19-9, until BYU countered with a 4-0 run, including three-consecutive Tanner Skabelund aces. Back-to-back kills from Sander contributed to a 6-2 run for the Cougars. However, it didn’t prove to be enough as the Cardinal finished off the set, 25-20.
A 5-0 run gave the Cougars an early 5-1 edge in the third set. Two Fa’agata-Tufuga kills helped the Cougars to a 6-1 run to push them to a 14-5 lead. The Cardinal responded with a 4-0 rally of their own, which Fa’agata-Tufuga ended with a kill. BYU maintained its advantage with a service ace and kill from Fa’agata-Tufuga. The Cougars finished the set scoring the last four-straight points to win 25-14.
The Cougars jumped out to an early 4-1 advantage in the fourth set. A 3-0 Cardinal run evened the game at 11-all. Stanford took its first lead, 16-15, which ended when a kill from Durkin tied it back up 16-16. A 3-0 Cougar rally pushed BYU to a 20-17 advantage. Back-to-back Sander kills gave the Cougars the set 25-20, sending it to the decisive fifth.
BYU stays at home to compete against Pepperdine on Thursday, March 1, at 7:00 p.m. MST, at the Smith Fieldhouse. A live stream and stats can be found on the schedule page.