SPOKANE, Wash. – No. 1 BYU women’s volleyball battled to its sixth-straight sweep, defeating Gonzaga on the road (25-19, 25-20, 25-23) Saturday.
Senior Roni Jones-Perry paced the Cougars (22-0, 12-0 WCC) with 18 kills, eight digs and an ace, hitting .484. Freshman Heather Gneiting followed up her stellar night Thursday with another solid outing, hitting .625 and notching 11 kills with a team-high five blocks. Senior Lyndie Haddock-Eppich led the Cougars with 39 assists and 11 digs.
“I’m really pleased with our serve and pass game today,” BYU head coach Heather Olmstead said. “Our middles were a huge offensive presence and they came up with some timely kills.”
Starting neck and neck in the set until 6-6, the Cougars then went on a big 10-0 run. With senior Sydnie Martindale serving, BYU had four different players record a kill, including a string of three-consecutive strikes from McKenna Miller. Jones-Perry and Gneiting added four kills apiece in the set as the Cougars hit .419.
Four early kills by Jones-Perry gave BYU some early separation, but the Bulldogs kept things tight throughout the second set. Up 20-19, kills by sophomore Kennedy Eschenberg and Miller followed by a block by Eschenberg and senior Lacy Haddock gave the Cougars a 23-19 edge. After a point by Gonzaga, Eschenberg and Miller again went back-to-back to seal the 25-20 win.
Jones-Perry again came out firing in the third set, garnering three-straight kills to go up early, 3-1. The two teams traded points the rest of the way, with the Cougars holding no more than a three-point lead. Down 23-22, the Cougars responded to the pressure with a kill by Haddock followed by another from Miller to take the lead. Miller put the set and the match away at 25-23.
BYU will next face San Diego on Friday, Nov. 2 at 7 p.m. MT in the Smith Fieldhouse in the Cougars’ only game next week. The match will be shown live on BYUtv.
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