Strong play from outside hitters Jake Langlois and Brenden Sander led No. 2 BYU men's volleyball to a second-consecutive sweep (25-20, 25-18, 25-19) over No. 15 Cal Baptist on Saturday night at the Van Dyne Gymnasium.
"It was a good road swing for the guys," BYU head coach Shawn Olmstead said. "We learned some important things that can contribute to our improvement. A handful of players dug deep to play at a high level."
Langlois led the Cougars with 11 kills while tying for team highs in digs (three) and blocks (four). Sander added double-digit kills of his own with 10 while hitting a .500 clip. Leo Durkin set the offense with 27 assists, and Ben Patch had strong play at the service line, collecting a career-high three aces. Additionaly, Michael Hatch went a perfect 4-of-4 on attacks while adding a team-high tying four blocks.
Cal Baptist (8-9, 3-9 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation) got off to a hot 5-1 start in the first set after several BYU (12-2, 8-2 MPSF) miscues. The Cougars then battled back to knot the score up at 8-all following a Lancer attack error. Down 14-11, BYU scored the next four-consecutive points to take its first lead of the night at 15-14 after a Langlois and Price Jarman block. A Sander kill and pair of Cal Baptist errors then helped the Cougars go up by three, 20-17, forcing a Lancer timeout. Sander then closed out the set, 25-20, on a kill.
Durkin started the second set with an ace en route to a five-point 8-3 BYU lead. The Cougars were ahead 11-4 before Cal Baptist used a 4-1 rally to cut its deficit to four, down 12-8. BYU maintained at least a four-point advantage from there as a Jarman kill extended the lead back to five at 19-14. The Cougars cruised to the end of the set, taking it 25-18 after a Lancer service error.
A Patch kill brought BYU out to a closely contested 6-4 lead early in the third set. Another Sander kill then extended the Cougars' advantage to four at 11-7. BYU continued to stay in control of the set with a 17-11 lead after another Jarman kill. A pair of Tim Dobbert kills and a Hatch, Patch and Langlois block kept the Cougar lead at six, 21-16. BYU finished out the set and match, completing the sweep, 25-19, on a Sander kill.
The Cougars return home to the Smith Fieldhouse next, taking on CSUN in a pair of matches beginning Friday, Feb. 26, at 7 p.m. MST. The match will be broadcast live on BYUtv and simulcast on BYU Radio. Links to live stats and a video feed can be found on the BYU men's volleyball schedule page.
Royce Hinton is the men's and women's volleyball sports information director for BYU Athletic Communications.