Seniors Honored as No. 2 BYU Sweeps No. 10 Southern California

4/12/2008

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Provo, Utah - The No. 2 BYU men's volleyball team (23-4, 18-4) clinched a share of the regular-season Mountain Pacific Sports Federation title with a three-set sweep over No. 10 USC (13-15, 10-12) Saturday in the Smith Fieldhouse.

BYU will be the No. 2 seed in the upcoming MPSF tournament because Long Beach State holds the tiebreaker over the Cougars. That means that BYU will host a quarterfinal match next Saturday against the winner of a play-in match between the Nos. 7 and 8 seeds to be held Wednesday.

The team's five seniors were honored after Saturday's match. Jonathan Charette, Brian Congelliere, Russell Holmes, Ivan Perez, and Trent Sorensen all started the match and were significant contributors. Charette led all attackers with 14 kills on the night, and Sorensen led all blockers setting a season-high with 10.

"Things went the way we wanted them to go here tonight," BYU head coach Shawn Patchell said. "Our guys were spot on with their blocking. We're peaking at the right time."

Defense was the story in a 30-22 BYU win in the first set. The Cougars hit only .155 in the set, but held USC to a -.160 attack percentage. The set was won at the net, though, as BYU recorded 6.0 total team blocks in the set including six block assists from Sorensen. The Trojans were also solid at the net with 3.5 total team blocks, but the Cougars never trailed in the set.

The offensive intensity increased in the second set, but BYU tightened its grip on USC and won 30-25. Charette had five kills in the set and Perez had three block assists. Neither team hit well, .206 for the Cougars and .167 for the Trojans, but each team recorded 3.0 total team blocks. BYU's 11 digs in the set allowed the team four more swings than USC in the set as the blue and white recorded 17 kills to the Trojans' 12.

The Cougars lit up their offense in the third set to complete the sweep with a 30-22 win. BYU hit .412 in the set led by Perez's five kills on nine swings. Both teams increased their total team blocks with 4.5 apiece in the set, but USC's .034 was not enough to keep the Trojans in contention.

Tickets for the quarterfinal match of the MPSF tournament in Provo will go on sale Tuesday to Cougar Club members and Thursday to the general public. All purchases can be made through the BYU ticket office.

Article courtesy of BYU athletics.

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