Volleyball recap: No. 24 CSU falls to BYU

Sept. 1, 2012

Box Score

By Nic Hallisey
Athletic Media Relations

WICHITA, Kan.—The No. 24 Rams were overpowered from start to finish in Set 2, erasing any momentum earned in the opening-set win, which led to a 3-1 BYU win Saturday afternoon at the Shocker Volleyball Classic (25-21, 12-25, 21-25, 16-25).

“We played frantically and couldn’t get anything going,” Head Coach Tom Hilbert said. “It’s disappointing, because we got worse today.”

After rallying for a Set-1 win, the second set was all BYU from start to finish. The Cougars, 5-0 on the year and receiving votes in the most recent AVCA top-25 poll, took the set’s first six points, and used a 9-0 run midway through to extend their lead to 18-3. Despite a 6-3 CSU run late in the frame, BYU was able to finish it easily, winning 25-12.

The third set was crucial for both teams. It featured six ties and a brief CSU lead, 11-10 after consecutive Dana Cranston kills, but BYU took seven of the next nine. CSU (3-3) got back within three—after a Brieon Paige kill to make it 17-20 and a Megan Plourde kill to put the score at 21-24—but never closer.

The Rams fell behind early, 5-1, in Set 4, and never recovered, dropping it, 16-25

In the opening Set, CSU fell behind by as many as five—9-14—but got the next three points to force a BYU timeout, and coming out, got four of the next six to tie the score at 16-16. Shortly after, the Rams took their first lead since 3-2, at 20-19, coming off of an Adrianna Culbert kill. That was Point 3 in a 4-0 run that allowed CSU to push toward the final stretch and get the opening-set win, 25-21.

With the loss, CSU fell to 0-3 in the Shocker Volleyball Classic. Each opponent is or has been ranked or receiving votes in the AVCA top-25 poll this season. It is CSU’s first three-match losing streak in four seasons—since Nov. 20-29, 2008.

“We have to figure out how to make our outside hitting more productive,” Hilbert said. “We’re playing with a great deal of desperation right now. We can’t ball handle and our outside hitting is bad, which is a problem.”

Plourde led CSU with 11 kills on .455 hitting. She was the one constant over the weekend, and was named to the all-tournament team. Fellow seniors, Cranston and Paige had nine kills apiece and Culbert tallied seven on .462 hitting.

BYU hit. 353 on the day in addition to outblocking CSU, 13.0-3.0.

CSU will have a chance to get back on the winning side Sunday vs. Oklahoma, another team receiving votes. The match will be played at Moby Arena at 1 p.m. MT.