BYU slides by Stanford in 3-2 match


No. 4 BYU beat Stanford 3-2 (25-22, 20-25, 25-21, 20-25, 15-7) Saturday at the Cardinals’ home court. This game marks the team’s 10th season win over Stanford.

“We got a really good start, played phenomenally good volleyball in the first set,” said BYU head coach Chris McGown. “It was a crazy, high-level match from the start. I thought the guys executed the game plan pretty well. We did a nice job defensively against them down the stretch. That’s a really, really good team, so for us to come in here on a long road trip — the second night of a tough stretch — and play well, I was really impressed with the boys’ effort.”

A season-high 27 kills by Taylor Sander along with 53 assists by Tyler Heap helped the Cougars secure their victory.

BYU led 6-0 in the fifth set before Stanford got a point off of a service error. Back-to-back kills by Sander gave the Cougars an 8-1 lead. BYU kept its lead, and the Cardinals rounded up a few points off of service errors. A kill by Sander finished off the match at 15-7.

The Cardinals stayed close on the Cougars’ lead in the first set, tying the score eight times before the Cougars jumped ahead off kills by Carson Heninger and Sander. Two consecutive aces by Rivera gave BYU a 17-13 lead. Devin Young finished the set off with two kills, 25-22.

The teams were tied on the second set until a block by Heninger, Rivera and Young gave the Cougars an 8-6 lead. A kill and an ace by Heninger put BYU up 11-7. The teams were tied up at 17 until Stanford gained a 5-0 run, putting them at 24-19. The Cardinals took the set at 25-20.

The Cougars fell behind in the third set until a kill by Matt Underwood set off a 4-0 run. A kill by Sander led BYU to a 17-12 lead. Sander finished off the set with three more kills at 25-21.

Stanford took an early lead in the fourth set, leading 14-9. The Cougars retaliated with a 4-0 run, but the Cardinals still led 22-20. Stanford completed the set with a few kills, winning 25-20.

The Cougars will take a bye week before hosting USC Feb. 28 at the Smith Fieldhouse.

Taylor Sander jumps to spike the ball over the net in the win over Long Beach. Photo by Maddi Dayton.
Taylor Sander jumps to spike the ball over the net in the win over Long Beach. (Photo by Maddi Dayton)
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