UVU volleyball drops home opener

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BYU sweeps Wolverines in front of record crowd

Kyle McDonald | Sports editor | @kylesportsbias

Gabi Campbell | Photo editor | @gabicampbellphotos

OREM, Utah — In front of a record crowd of 2,445 in the P.E. Building on the campus of Utah Valley University, the 9th-ranked BYU Cougars swept the Wolverines three sets to none (25-14, 25-15, 25-21) on Saturday night.UVU Vb vs BYU By GabiCampbell-01436

The loss drops UVU to 4-8 on the season while BYU improves to 10-1

BYU All-American Alexa Gray led the match with 15 kills and true freshman Veronica Jones had 12 for the Cougars who had a .533 hitting percentage in game one to storm by the Wolverines.  They also only committed one hitting error compared to six for UVU.

“I am really proud of the team,” BYU head coach Heather Olmstead said. “I thought we executed our offense we really well.  We stayed focused on the task and competed.”UVU Vb vs BYU By GabiCampbell-01469

The third set was the most competitive set with UVU jumping out to a 6-2 lead early kills by Lauren Bakker and Sierra Starley and a service ace from Danelle Parady.

“We played a lot better in the third set,” UVU head coach Sam Atoa said. “I felt like the energy was better and we took care of the ball a lot better.”

BYU took the lead in the third set on back-to-back kills by Gray and Whitney Howard and UVU kept it close but the Cougars were able to fight off the rally to win the set and the match.UVU Vb vs BYU By GabiCampbell-01473

“We kind of became a little bit undisciplined,” Atoa said.  “We didn’t our opportunities and chances to take care of the ball like we did at the first of it.  They are too good of a team for us to take a little bit of a break.”

Macky Fifita and Bakker led the Wolverines with 12 and eight kills respectively on the night and Starley had 30 assists in the match.

UVU now starts conference play as they travel next weekend to take on Chicago State and conference favorite UMKC. They will return home on October 1 for a match CSU Bakersfield followed by a match on October 3 against Grand Canyon.