Cougars to Play Cowgirls on the Road

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    By John Gale

    BYU?s women?s volleyball team will play a Mountain West Conference match on the road against Wyoming Thursday, Oct. 12, 2006, at 7 p.m.

    ?Wyoming is a team that, in terms of systems, is very similar to us,? BYU head coach Jason Watson said. ?They?ve certainly been a lot more successful at home in that environment than they have been on the road, so we?re expecting an extremely competitive match in their gym.?

    After last week?s three wins, the Cougars (15-2, 6-1 MWC) maintained their No. 19 ranking in the CSTV/AVCA poll.

    ?I think we?ve all really come together and we?ve really been playing well as a team,? libero Janvier Beaumont said. ?We gel really well, so we?ve been playing well so far. We?ve been really competitive, and just competing to our high standards, so it?s been good.”

    The Cougars moved up to fifth in the nation in hitting percentage, and also rank 28th in assists and 30th in kills.

    Setter Amy Schlauder set two career highs in assists over the weekend and leads the conference in that category. Rightside hitter Erica Lott and outside hitter Chelsea Goodman are the conference?s top two performers in kills and points.

    The Cowgirls (8-8, 2-4) are led by outside hitter Rachel Smith, who ranks fourth in the conference in kills and fifth in points. Outside hitter Annie Meyers is eighth in kills and ninth in points. As a team, Wyoming is third in the conference in digs.

    Injuries continue to plague the Cougars. Lott and Schlauder returned to play last weekend, but middle blocker Rachel Dyer tore a ligament in her foot in practice last Thursday. She will wear a cast for two weeks and be re-evaluated.

    ?It?s not easy to get hurt in the middle of the season,? Dyer said. ?But luckily my teammates and coaches are really supportive, and we?re all optimistic that I?ll be back and be able to play soon.?

    Dyer had been leading the league and was ranked 17th in the NCAA in hitting percentage when she was injured. She was also ninth in the conference in blocks.

    ?It was a blow for us,? Watson said. ?She has been playing incredibly well.?

    After the match, the Cougars will get some extra time to rest because they won?t play again until the following Friday. Watson said after the match, the team would not practice until Tuesday.

    ?This match falls at a great time for us, especially with our recent history of not being very healthy at times,? Watson said.

    Live statistics for the match are available from the schedule portion of the team?s home page on byucou-gars.com. Live video is available from the same page to CSTV XXL subscribers.

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