No. 2 BYU men’s volleyball takes a five-set loss against No. 10 Hawaii

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No. 2 BYU men’s volleyball ended its six-match winning streak with a 3-2 loss against No. 10 Hawaii (16-25, 19-25, 26-24, 25-18, 15-12).

“Looking at the match, there were two halves,” said BYU head coach Chris McGown. “I thought we played really, really well for about two and a half sets, and then they played well for about two and a half sets. We made some uncharacteristic mistakes, and we’re looking at this as just an opportunity to see how we can be better in an under-pressure environment.”

Ben Patch, Taylor Sander and Devin Young block a kill in the opening round game of the conference tournament against Hawaii. (Photo by Elliott Miller)
Ben Patch, Taylor Sander and Devin Young block a kill in the opening round game of the conference tournament against Hawaii. (Photo by Elliott Miller)

Senior Taylor Sander led BYU with 16 kills and 12 digs recorded as his third double-double of the season. Senior Devin Young contributed six of the 10 blocks for BYU, and junior Josue Rivera contributed 12 kills. Freshman Tim Dobbert supported with 11 kills.

BYU stole the momentum in the beginning of the evening, winning the first two sets 25-16 and 25-19; but momentum switched in the third set. BYU and Hawaii fought neck and neck, but Hawaii beat out with a 26-24 win. The momentum switch carried Hawaii through the next two sets, and the team walked away with a 3-2 win.

“It was a great crowd, really loud,” McGown said. “We hadn’t been in an environment like that on the road this season, so it was good for us to feel that and see how we responded.”

BYU led the whole way through the first set. The Cougars got up to a 10-point lead with a 6-1 point run, bringing them to 21-11. Momentum stayed in their favor; with a kill by Young, BYU finished with a 25-16 win.

BYU again led the whole way through the second set. With a 18-11 lead BYU was unstoppable, and momentum was far in their favor. BYU maintained their lead, and with a kill by Sander, BYU added another win to the scoreboard, beating Hawaii 25-19.

In the beginning of the third set Hawaii took its first lead of the match at 4-3. BYU came back with a 5-4 lead, but both teams battled between points until they tied at 12. Both teams tied 11 more times. BYU soon took the advantage with a kill by Sander at 24-23 for game point, but Hawaii took the next two points and the set at 26-24.

Fourth set BYU started with a 3-0 lead, but momentum didn’t stay in its favor long. Both teams tied at 7-7, but soon Hawaii took the advantage with a 9-7 lead. Hawaii continued to lead and pushed ahead to 17-11. BYU trailed for the rest of the set, never getting within five points, and Hawaii took the set 25-18, putting the score at 2-2.

Momentum stayed in Hawaii’s favor in the fifth set. The team took a 6-2 lead and then an 11-6 lead. BYU fought back with a 4-1 run, bringing the score to 12-10, but that wasn’t enough. Hawaii took the set 15.12, 3-2.

BYU plays Hawaii again at 7 p.m. (HST) on Saturday, April 5.

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