Revenge was the order of the day for the BYU women's volleyball team as the Cougars swept New Mexico in Albuquerque, N.M., on Friday to improve to 17-6 overall and 9-4 in the Mountain West Conference.
The Lobos had taken the last two matches from the Cougars before BYU recorded its 10th sweep of the season.
"I think this was the most impressive road victory of my career in terms of a complete performance," said BYU head coach Jason Watson. "Everything was so good. New Mexico played great, but we were unbelievable."
Junior Rachel Dyer and senior Erica Lott led the way for the Cougars with 12 kills each while senior Chelsea Goodman added 11. Goodman also contributed 11 digs to post her 51st career double-double. In addition to her .625 hitting mark, Dyer posted a team-high eight blocks, helping BYU post 14.5 rejections on the night.
After an early battle in Game 1 resulted in a 7-7 tie, BYU posted a 13-10 lead only to see the Lobos climb back to knot the score again at 14-14. The Cougars managed to stay one step ahead of New Mexico from there until the Lobos took their first lead since 7-6 at 26-25 on a block. However, moments later, BYU regained the advantage thanks to back-to-back Lobo hitting errors. Rachel Dyer put the game away for the Cougars with a kill to get the 30-28 win.
Game 2 was again a tight affair, but BYU maintained a led throughout the contest, going up by as many as six points at 24-18. New Mexico made a late push to get to within one point at 27-26, but Dyer once again willed the Cougars to victory, posting her fifth block and 10th kill to secure the 30-26 win.
BYU led early in Game 3, but New Mexico fought back to take the lead at 13-12. The two teams stayed neck and neck from there until the Cougars began to pull away with back-to-back kills from Ashton Hansen leading to a 25-21 BYU lead.
TCU DEFEATS UTAH, 3-0: At Fort Worth, Texas, despite 14 kills and 14 digs from Kathryn Haynie, the Utah women's volleyball team fell to TCU, 3-0.
Lori Baird had nine kills and two blocks while Kate Robison tallied eight kills and 12 digs for the Utes. Keisha Fisher recorded 26 assists, three kills and six digs. Connie Dangerfield came away with 13 digs.
All three games were close. The first game, which TCU won in extra points, 34-32, saw 15 ties and seven lead changes, with the Utes holding a slim lead through much of the game. Utah had the opportunity to win the match on a 29-26 lead with help from a three-point run that started with a kill from Haynie. However, the Horned Frogs came back to score the next four points with help from kills by Lauren Otto and Christy Hudson, taking a 30-29 lead. The two teams traded points during the next few possessions, tying the game at 32-32. Lemeita Smith's kill and Otto's service ace ended the game.
TCU jumped out quickly in Game 2, taking an 11-3 lead before Utah went on a drive of its own and tied the game at 14-14. The two teams matched each other point for point until the end. Tied 24-24, TCU went on a four-point surge to take control of the match, winning 30-25.
A late run by TCU also hurt Utah in Game 3. Down 25-23, the Horned Frogs went on a 5-1 run to end the match, 30-24.
"We played really hard tonight," head coach Beth Launiere said. "We had a lead most of the way in Game 1 and made some errors late that cost us, and it was difficult to recover from that. We got into a big hole in Game 2 before coming back to tie it. It was a great team effort. We made a lot of great effort plays and just couldn't get it done at the end of the games."