Volleyball: UVU battles back, beats CSU in 4

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Photo by UVU Athletics

CHICAGO–Despite a slow start, the Utah Valley University volleyball team eventually righted the ship and secured a come-from-behind victory as it defeated Chicago State in four sets (17-25, 25-23, 25-20, 25-20) Saturday.

“The girls did a nice job. Chicago State played well today, but I was proud of our girls for being able to battle back and show some resiliency,” UVU head coach Sam Atoa said in a statement to wolverinegreen.com.

The first set was initially tight, as the teams traded points for much of the early goings. With the score tied at 8-8, Chicago State pulled ahead on an attack error by Utah Valley. That sparked a 9-2 run for the Cougars as they built a commanding lead. The Wolverines responded with a run of their own to pull within four when a Kiahna Vernon kill made the score 20-16. The Wolverines got no closer, however, as the Cougars pulled away to take the first set.

Utah Valley came out hot in the second set as it scored three straight points to take an early lead. The Cougars fired back, and the teams battled their way to a 14-14 tie. CSU’s Brianna Stewart recorded a block that broke the tie and kicked off a 7-2 run that gave the Cougars a 21-16 lead. When it looked like Chicago State was close to a second-set victory, UVU came roaring back to finish on an 8-2 run to win the second set.

The Cougars bounced back in the third set as they used a 4-1 run to propel them to an 11-7 lead. Utah Valley responded when a Kiahna Vernon kill started a 6-1 Wolverine run that made the score 13-12 in favor of UVU. Each side exchanged scores until the Wolverines reeled off a 4-1 run and took the set.

The fourth set was a back and forth grudge match as the lead changed four times. With the score tied at 15-15, Utah Valley scored on an error by Chicago State. The Wolverines took control at that point and never looked back as they won the match in the fourth and final set.

With the win, the Wolverines pull to 11-13 on the year and 7-4 in conference play. Next up, the Wolverines will take on Weber State in Orem on Nov. 1.