Utah Valley fans showed up in large numbers Wednesday night as the Wolverines hosted the much anticipated Utah State Aggies. The game would be the first against USU since Utah Valley was denied admission to the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) this past summer. The last time UVU played Utah State was last season in Logan, when they brought the Aggies 11-0 record to a halt after the win.
Wednesday night The Wolverines would rise above The Aggies again in a 3-0 (25-20, 25-21, 20,25) victory.
In the first set UVU took a 5-0 run in the beginning and continued to peruse strong offense throughout the set. The Wolverines’ defense performed throughout the set, limiting USU’s kill percentage at .073. After a close score of 21-20 late in the set, Utah Valley drove another four-point run to win the first set 25-20.
Although Wednesday night’s game was only taken to three sets, the Aggies challenged Utah Valley consistently. In the first set alone, the game saw eight lead changes while the score was tied nine different times.
The Wolverines were able to out-dig the Aggies and keep a higher kill percentage. Although Chelsey Heaps was a large contributor to that with 10 kills and 17 total digs to end the night, the whole team came together to preform outstanding offense. According to coach Sam Atoa, the team relies multiple players whether they are starters or not.
“I love our offense because it’s so balanced,” Heaps said. “I feel like anyone can score, we’re not relying on one single person at any time. We give the ball to somebody and their going to put it away.”
The third set began with the Wolverines trailing 0-2. The collective effort would continue, however with 18 kills and 18 digs in the third set. At 24-20 a service ace by Brookelyn Campbell would finalize the win.
“I am very confident in the girl’s abilities to play this game,” Atoa said following Wednesday night’s game. “And when they do, we’re pretty good.”
Written by Kevin Olsen, sports writer