PROVO, Utah -- Led by Jennifer Hamson’s eight kills, No. 10 BYU women’s volleyball defeated Utah Valley University 3-0 (25-18, 25-18, 25-16) to conclude the BYU Invitational Saturday night at the Smith Fieldhouse.
“I was pleased with the way the girls came out in a match like that the night after a tough one against Washington,” BYU head coach Shawn Olmstead said. “I was really pleased with how we got a lead every set that gave us a cushion.”
BYU (5-1) jumped out to an early 3-0 lead on UVU (1-6) behind kills by Alexa Gray and Young. The teams then exchanged runs throughout the first set with the Cougars holding a comfortable lead the majority of the way thanks to solid play at the net by Hamson, Young and Gray. Young and Willardson teamed up to block a UVU kill attempt to secure the set 25-17 for BYU. Gray led the Cougars with four kills in the set.
Both teams exchanged points to begin the second set until a Hamson kill helped spark a 4-0 run to jump start BYU. With Ciara Parker serving later in the set, the Cougars went on a 5-0 run to extend its lead to 14-5. The Wolverines kept the set competitive by rallying from a 15-6 deficit to close within four at 19-15, but a Hannah Robison kill helped the Cougars regain momentum for the remainder of the set. A Young kill set by Willardson closed out the set for BYU 25-18.
With Willardson serving to begin the third set, BYU jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead. The Cougars would lead by as much as eight at 16-8, but much like the second set, the Wolverines would battle back to within four at 16-12. Kills by Amy Boswell and Hamson halted UVU’s run and kept the Wolverines from closing within six points the rest of the set. A service error by UVU ended the set with BYU winning the match 25-16.
The Cougars went 2-1 during the BYU Invitational, losing to No. 5 Washington in five sets Friday night.
The Cougars now begin a four-game road trip beginning with No. 13 Colorado State on Sept. 12. The next home match will be against the University of Utah on Sept. 19 at the Smith Fieldhouse.
Washington vs. UMBC
No. 5 Washington (6-0) took care of business from the start against the outmatched UMBC Retrievers (4-3), sweeping them to go a perfect 3-0 at the BYU Invitational. Krista Vansant led the way for the Huskies in the first set with eight kills on eight attacks as Washington cruised to an easy first set win 25-10. The second set was more of the same; Washington won 25-14 with Courtney Schwan leading the way for the Huskies with five kills. Krystal Mlemchukwu tallied four kills for UMBC and Hannah Schmidt added three kills for the Retrievers. UMBC hung around for a while in the third set, but the Huskies proved to be too much, eventually winning the set and match 25-18.
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