Skip to main content

No. 5 Dawgs Stymie Utah Valley In Three

Sep 6, 2014

PROVO, Utah – Back on the court just over 12 hours after an emotional five set win against 10th-ranked BYU, the fifth-ranked Husky volleyball team had to be ready to compete hard once again against the Utah Valley Wolverines. Senior outside hitters Krista Vansant and Kaleigh Nelson were morning persons, as they combined for 25 kills to lead UW to the 25-14, 25-19, 25-23 victory at the Smith Fieldhouse.

Washington improved to 5-0 on the year and is a win away from clinching the BYU Invitational team title, with another match later today against UMBC. The Dawgs hit .394 for the day, holding Utah Valley to a .190 mark, and UW held a big edge in kills, 47 to 39, and blocks, 10.5 to 3.0. The Wolverines had three aces compared to two for the Huskies, and ended up with three more digs, 43-40.

Vansant finished with 13 kills on a .429 attack percentage and Nelson had 12 at a .550 rate. Vansant had just one kill in the first set but rolled up a dozen in sets two and three. Junior Lianna Sybeldon had six kills, hitting .500, and had a team-best eight blocks. Freshman Courtney Schwan got a start today at outside hitter and had six kills, seven digs, three blocks and an assist. The 21 assists of  junior Katy Beals helped pace the offense.

Nelson picked up the first two kills of the morning for the Dawgs. Schwan put away a Beals set for an early 4-2 lead. A third kill for Schwan came after UVU overpassed a Bailey Tanner serve for a 7-3 edge. The Wolverines earned three straight points to cut the lead to one before Crissy Jones put away two straight points from opposite pins for 9-6. Sybeldon and Jones then assisted each other for UW’s first rejection of the day, and Vansant added another on the next point for a 4-0 run and a UVU timeout at 11-6. Sybeldon’s first kill on a Tanner quick set made it 12-7. Melanie Wade’s first kill had the Dawgs up 14-7. Wade put down a slide kill set from Katy Beals to make it 18-10, with UVU taking a timeout after missing long on the next point. Out of the break, Wade was at the center of a triple block for 20-10. Jones was all over another stuff block on the right side, and she then hit high off the hands for a kill to bring UW to set point at 24-13. On the second opportunity, Sybeldon put a kill away to wrap it up, 25-14. The Huskies hit .464 in the first set, with Schwan, Nelson, Sybeldon, and Jones all finishing the set with three kills.

Mostly quiet for the first set, Vansant started the second off with a kill. Nelson roofed a Wolverine swing straight to the floor for an early 3-1 lead. Sybeldon hit a second contact over for a kill, Vansant added another deep, and Jones provided a rejection as the Huskies constructed themselves a 9-3 lead on a five point serving run from Schwan. Utah Valley bounced back with three in a row before a Sybeldon kill stopped the run. A great bump set from Jones led to another Vansant finish, then Beals served up an ace to get the lead back up to five at 12-7. Utah Valley pulled within one point on a Husky error and a Wolverines block, but Nelson answered with a right side kill for 15-13. The teams traded sideouts, with Vansant adding a couple more kills to keep UW just out ahead. Nelson killed an overdig for a 20-17 edge. Utah Valley pulled within one again but Schwan converted from the left for 21-19. Schwan and Sybeldon got up for a big block out of the break for a 23-19 lead. Schwan then got a kill off a blocking error and on the first set point, she spotted the setter dump attempt and hopped up for the stuff, ending the set, 25-19. The Huskies hit .278 in the set, holding the Wolverines to a .086 mark. Vansant put up six kills in the set on nine attempts without an error, hitting .667.

Vansant and Nelson had consecutive kills after UVU opened with the first two points of the third. Utah Valley took its biggest lead with a three-point run to make it 2-5 until Wade and Nelson came back with a rejection. Tanner dropped a serve in short for an ace and then newly inserted redshirt freshman Carly DeHoog tied it at 6-6 with a kill on her first swing of the day. A great up from Schwan led to a Sybeldon finish in the middle for 8-8 and a Vansant kill put the Huskies back up by one. Vansant pounded another crosscourt from the left for a 12-10 edge. Two straight kills from Nelson were followed by a Wade kill off a Wolverines overpass for a 3-0 Husky run to make it 15-12. Wade tipped another over and down for 16-13. Nelson put another off the blockers and out in transition for 17-13 and Utah Valley took its first timeout. The Wolverines got the sideout, but UW answered with three more to push out to 20-14 and force the second UVU timeout, as DeHoog got in on a block assist and then smacked one off the blockers and out for a kill. Redshirt freshman Jade Finau checked in for the first time at 21-15. The Huskies gave up four straight points with some shaky passing until the Wolverines served it long for 22-19. The Wolverines got an ace and UW missed a connection on the attack as UVU got within one. Vansant came back with a kill to get to match point at 24-22. Utah Valley saved the first, but Tanner set Vansant in serve-receive and she struck from the middle of the net for her 13th and final kill to end it, 25-23. Utah Valley hit .350 in the final set, but the Huskies were even more efficient at .457, as Nelson killed all six swings she took in the final frame.

Washington will look to secure the BYU Invitational title later today when it gets back on the court against UMBC for a 5 p.m. local start time, 4 p.m. Pacific.