No. 2 BYU Men's Volleyball Sweeps Visiting USC
Davide Gardini had 11 kills and 4 blocks, Zach Eschenberg added 9 kills and 4 aces and Gabi Garcia Fernandez had 9 kills to help the No. 2-ranked BYU men's volleyball team sweep visiting USC, 25-22, 25-18, 25-16, in a Mountain Pacific Sports Federation match on Thursday (April 1) in Provo, Utah.
BYU won its 10th straight match to improve to 15-2 overall and in the MPSF. USC saw its 3-match winning streak snapped as it fell to 5-9 overall and in the MPSF.
The teams play again on Friday (April 2) at 7 p.m. MT/6 p.m. PT in Provo.
USC was without head coach Jeff Nygaard, who stayed in the hotel with a non-COVID-19 related illness. Assistant coach Gary Sato filled in for Nygaard.
BYU hit .443 in the match to USC's .203. The Cougars served 8 aces and had 10.5 blocks, while the Trojans had 4 aces and 3.5 blocks.
USC was led by Billy Fauntleroy, who had a match-best 16 kills while hitting .407. Danny Sutton Farrell had 3 blocks and Clay Dickinson had 4 digs.
Gardini hit a blazing .769 and Eschenberg hit .615. Miki Jauhiainen added 5 kills and Felipe de Brito Ferreira had 5 blocks.
BYU ran off 5 straight points (including 3 aces by Eschenberg) midway through the first set to open a 20-15 lead and USC couldn't overcome it as both teams hit well (.455 for the Cougars and .429 for the Trojans).
Another 5-0 run by BYU early in the second set built a 9-4 lead for the Cougars, who soon after extended it to 12-5, and the Trojans never threatened as BYU hit .412 and served 4 aces.
BYU scored 4 unanswered points in the third set to go up 13-8 and USC could not come back as the Cougars hit .455.