The Cougars swept new conference opponent Pacific in three sets (25–20, 25–9, 25–22) during their 20th straight home win. This victory raises BYU to 10–3 overall and 3–0 in conference.
Leading the Cougars in the match were sophomore Alexa Gray with 12 kills, senior Kathryn LeCheminant with 10 blocks and sophomore Ciara Parker with 12 digs.
“I’m happy with the win. That’s a good program,” said head coach Shawn Olmstead. “Any win in conference is really, really important for what you’re trying to build.”
BYU stayed up in the first set but remained in close range of Pacific. The Cougars attacked aggressively, and the Tigers played their best on defense, returning almost everything.
BYU pulled ahead to gain a lead of 21–17 after a long rally ending in a set kill from setter Camry Godfrey. Jessica Jardine played aggressively on the right side and took advantage of some pass errors from the Tigers at the net.
The Tigers made a slight comeback with a series of kills, but the Cougars put a stop to the run and pushed ahead to take the first set 25–20.
Sophomore Alexa Gray led BYU in set two with six kills. The Cougars pushed ahead 9–3 after a series of kills from junior Tambre Haddock and a kill in the middle from LeCheminant.
Haddock’s energy from solid defensive blocks contributed to the Cougars’ 12–4 lead. Gray proved unstoppable on the outside, leading the Cougars to easily win the second set 25–9.
BYU confidently stepped on the court in set three, but Pacific returned with a fight. The Cougars made a couple service aces and kills to pull ahead 7–3, but the Tigers quickly returned to tie the game 12–12.
“We knew they were going to come back a lot stronger, so we had to do our best to work on what we’ve been working on in practice,” Ciara Parker said.
The Cougars and the Tigers traded points in the end of the third set, and the Cougars gained a slight advantage at 22–21. A strong block from the Cougars and a hitting error from the Tigers gave BYU the set 24–22.
In future games, the Cougars are working on no set backs and not letting up when they have a big lead. Gray said the team is working on remaining at a high level of play the whole time.
“We stayed consistent, but we just played at a lower level,” Gray said. “We came out slow in the first set, we picked it up in the second set passed better, had more kills, moved the ball around a little bit more, and we didn’t come out with fire in the third set.”
The Cougars head to the road next week to face Pepperdine on Oct. 3 and Loyola Marymount on Oct. 5.