Utah State women’s volleyball hit a season-high .336 (57-15-125) at Wyoming on Saturday afternoon en route to a 3-1 (25-22, 25-27, 25-19, 25-15) road victory over the Cowgirls. The Aggies also benefited from a career-high-tying 23 kills by senior outside Lauren Anderson, as USU moved to 14-12 overall and 6-8 in Mountain West play.
In addition to leading the team, Anderson also led all outside hitters, hitting .356 (23-7-45) during the match, and she was joined in double figures by senior outside Rachel Gale-Hammond with 10 kills. Junior setter Kassidy Johnson narrowly missed a double-double after logging 48 assists and nine digs. Junior libero Tasia Taylor led all players on the back row with a match-high 18 digs and was followed by senior opposite Kayla DeCoursey with 10 digs, her second double-digit dig match in the last three contests.
Utah State opened the match with a 3-1 run and continued that lead up to 12-9 until Wyoming came back and tied the set at 12-12. The teams then fought through two more ties at 13-13 and 14-14. USU broke the final deadlock with a three-point run behind a kill by DeCoursey and back-to-back Wyoming errors. The Aggies continued to lead throughout the set and closed out the first frame, 25-22, behind three kills by Anderson.
The second set was tightly contested throughout, as the teams played through seven lead changes and 20 ties, and neither team led by more than two during the frame. Wyoming broke a 22-22 tie late in the set with back-to-back points, taking set point, 24-22. The Aggies fought back and tied the set again at 24-24 behind a kill by Anderson and an attacking error by Wyoming. The Cowgirls answered with a kill, but it was immediately followed by a kill by DeCoursey, tying the set again at 25-25. Wyoming was able to break through and take the set following a USU service error and a Cowgirl kill to tie the match, 1-1, with the 27-25 victory.
Utah State broke a 5-5 tie in the third set with a six-point run, taking an 11-5 lead behind kills by freshman middle Bailey Downing and Gale-Hammond. The Aggies maintained the winning margin throughout the set, and Downing put the finishing touches on the frame with a service ace, giving Utah State the set, 25-19.
Utah State jumped out to a 5-1 lead in the fourth set, capitalizing on four Wyoming errors and a kill by junior middle Lauren O’Brien. The margin grew to six, 8-2, following a block by DeCoursey that led to a Cowgirl timeout. The Aggies continued to lead throughout the set, as Wyoming only came as close as four, 15-11, before a four-point run by Utah State put the visitors up 19-11. USU then wrapped up the set with back-to-back kills from Anderson and DeCoursey, taking the match, 25-15.
Sophomore outside Tara Traphagan led Wyoming offensively with 14 kills, hitting .344 (14-3-32), as the Cowgirls hit .200 (53-24-145) overall. Sophomore libero Madi Fields led the Wyoming back row with 13 digs, and freshman setter Marissa Harmon led the Cowgirls with 46 assists.
Utah State has one more contest remaining on its current three-match road swing, traveling to Boise State to face the Broncos on Tuesday, Nov. 7, at 7:30 p.m.
Kyle Cottam is the Assistant Athletic Director for Media Relations at Utah State University.