No. 9 BYU Sweeps No. 11 Hawai'i
PROVO, Utah - University of Hawai‘i men's volleyball freshman Steven Hunt continued his recent hitting prowess but could not lead his Warriors past ninth-ranked Brigham Young. The Cougars swept the two-match Mountain Pacific Sports Federation series with a 30-23, 30-28, 30-28 victory Friday at Smith Fieldhouse.
The 11th-ranked Warriors (1-6, 0-4 MPSF) dropped their sixth consecutive match and lost to the Cougars for the 17th time in 20 all-time meetings in Provo. BYU has swept the season series with the Warriors at Smith Fieldhouse the last three times.
For the third consecutive match, Hunt led the team in hitting with 15 kills. In his last three matches, the freshman from Toronto has 58 kills and is averaging 5.3 kills per set during that span.
Senior Jim Clar, who started his first match this season, pounded 11 kills, six of which occurred in the first set. Freshman Gus Tuaniga added 10 kills and hit .500 while middle blocker Matt Rawson had a team-high seven blocks.
The match was decided on the service line where the Warriors committed 19 errors, including a crucial one at match point after rallying with five straight points. The Cougars (4-3, 2-0) ripped seven aces compared to one for Hawai‘i.
The Warriors contained BYU's potent offense to .254 hitting. On Thursday, the Cougars hit .480 as a team and their top three kill leaders hit a staggering .438 or better. The Warriors hitting .282 on Friday but middles Rawson and Steven Grgas combined for only seven kills.
Mat Taylor pounded a match-high 19 kills for the Cougars. Andrew Stewart added 11 kills while Kaua‘i High School graduate Futi Tavana had five kills and five blocks.
UH senior Michael China started his first career match at libero for Ric Cervantes and finished with five digs.
Hawai'i returns to the court next week when it hosts Cal State Northridge, Jan. 30 & 31 at the Stan Sheriff Center. First serve for both matches is 7:00 p.m.
Article courtesy of Hawai'i athletics.