After a disappointing loss in Boulder, Colo. the Cougar volleyball team (13-6, 5-2) rebounded with a sweep of Utah (11-8, 4-4) in Salt Lake City on Sunday afternoon. The three sets were tightly competitive that saw WSU come out on top.
The third set looked like it ended when the Cougars knocked the ball over the net and a Ute defender made contact with it. But the point went to Utah upon review. It went back and fourth until WSU earned a match point at 26-25. Karly Basham finished off the sweep with an ace that found the floor in the middle of Utah’s defense.
While Washington State only hit .244 in the final set, it didn’t matter as they had a high kill percentage of .400. The Cougars were able to convert their hits into kills and that’s why they were able to overcome the six lead changes, and 16 ties, to complete the sweep.
Washington State closed out the match on a 3-0 run. It was the only scoring run that either squad put together in the final set
In the second set, the Cougars struggled to build a lead more than two points. The largest lead they built was four when WSU went on a 4-0 run to make it 16-12. Utah quickly equalized cut that lead to one with a mini-run of 3-0. That was a lead a Washington State would hold until the Utes equalized it at 20.
That win in the second set came despite the fact that WSU hit .156. The good news is that Utah only hit .150 as well. Which was the result of some spectacular defense — both sides combined for 32 digs in the set.
Utah actually controlled the first set through its first 10 points. It was a 9-4 scoring run that gave the Cougs their first lead of the match at 16-15. That was a lead that Washington State would not relinquish. WSU pretty easily coasted to a 25-21 win at that point.
This was the most efficient offensive sets for both squads as they both hit .312. While WSU hit better down the stretch, and that’s what made it so they could have the comparatively comfortable set win.