Cougars End Weekend Series With Three-game Sweep of No. 11 Lewis
PROVO -- The BYU men's volleyball team improved to 3-0 on the season with its second straight 3-0 win over 11th-ranked Lewis on Saturday, 15-9, 15-10, 15-10. The win extended the Cougars' Smith Fieldhouse win streak to 32 straight, dating back to March, 1997.
"It's hard to know how critical one should be of this team at this point," BYU head coach Carl McGown said. "We have six new guys out on the court and we just beat a very good team in six straight games. We played hard and competed well. This was a very valuable experience for this team."
The Cougars' defense came up big for a second straight night, recording 43 blocks, 26 digs and forced 37 Flyer errors on 132 attempts (.152) at the net. Junior Scott Bunker led the defensive charge, producing a season-high 17 blocks on the night to set a BYU single-match record. UC Santa Barbara transfer Joaquin Acosta tallied his second double-double of the year with a team-high 16 kills and 10 blocks. Casey Jennings recorded 15 kills for the second straight night, hitting a match-high .464 at the net (15-of-28).
"It looks like our blocking has improved," McGown said. "We have really worked on that and have had some quality practices. Like last night, we took advantage of some of the situations Lewis threw at us and our front line really had a nice weekend."
In game one, BYU jumped out to an 11-2 lead before the Flyers, led by Eduardo Quniones with eight kills in the game, reeled off six un-answered points to cut the Cougars' lead to 11-8. After Jennings picked up one of his eight kills in the game to push BYU to a 13-9 advantage, the two teams traded 10 serves until sophomore Jaime Mayol came up with the solo block to give BYU the 15-9 win.
The second game of the match saw the two teams locked at 5-5 before the Cougars went on an offensive rampage, scoring eight un-answered points. With the Cougars leading 13-5, Lewis fought back behind Quinones and Jorge Alifonso, who combined for 12 of the Flyers 19 kills in game two, to cut BYU's lead to 13-10. Acosta took matters into his own hands, coming up with two straight kills to put BYU up 14-10. Once again, it was Mayol who ended the game for the Cougars, coming up with only his second kill of the match.
In the final game, Lewis took an early 7-2 lead before the Cougars rallied back and tied things up at 10-10. From then on it was all BYU. The Cougars picked up five more blocks in the final stretch and reached match-point on BYU setter Chris Pitzak's only kill of the match. The match ended on a Lewis hitting error.
The Cougars will hit the practice floor at 9 a.m. on Monday before taking off for an important three-match conference road trip next week. In a span of four days, the Cougars will travel to No. 13 Pacific on Tuesday, No. 14 Stanford on Wednesday and No. 6 Hawai'i on Friday.
Short Box Score (Final)
Lewis vs BYU (Jan 15, 2000 at Provo, Utah)
BYU def. Lewis 15-9,15-10,15-10
Lewis (0-2) (Kills-aces-blocks) - QUINONES, Eduardo 21-1-3; ALIFONSO,
Jorge 14-0-2; JOHNWICK, Bryan 7-0-6; BINDON, Grant 7-0-1; ZAMBO, Marty
6-0-2; DENIZ, Edgardo 2-0-2; Totals 57-1-9.0. (Assists) - DENIZ,
Edgardo 46. (Dig leaders) - GETZ, Jeff 9; QUINONES, Eduardo 7
BYU (3-0) (Kills-aces-blocks) - ACOSTA, Joaquin 16-1-10; JENNINGS,
Casey 15-0-7; WALL, Mike 6-0-2; MAYOL, Jaime 6-0-3; BUNKER, Scott
6-0-17; OLSEN, Matt 5-0-3; PITZAK, Chris 1-1-1; GOLDSTON, Brad 1-0-0;
Totals 56-2-23.0. (Assists) - PITZAK, Chris 49. (Dig leaders) -
JENNINGS, Casey 5; GOLDSTON, Brad 4
Site: Provo, Utah (Smith Fieldhouse)
Date: Jan 15, 2000 Attend: 2558 Time: 1:45
Referees: TOM GIVEN, LES CALLES, KRM;DJM;MA,ST,EK
Tonight's win marks the Cougars 32nd straight win
in the Smith Fieldhouse.