Around the Mountain West

Nov 032003
Authors: Katrice Thomas

As volleyball inches closer to the end of regular season, the

Rams have set up camp atop of the Mountain. The entire conference

was in action along with the 16th ranked Rams this weekend. Could

San Diego State pull off an upset over CSU, allowing Utah into the

dogfight atop the MWC; would Wyoming pull off the much needed win

to salvage their season; could New Mexico snap an 18-game losing

streak? Answers to those questions and more from around the

Mountain West:

Air Force (13-11, 3-7)

The Falcons couldn’t get into the swing of things this past

weekend. Friday night Air Force dropped three straight to the Utah

Utes (30-24, 30-17, 30-13), and on Saturday dropped three more

against the Cougars of Brigham Young (30-23, 30-11 and 30-21). The

Falcons hit .000 or less in two of the three games against the

Utes. Errors also hurt the Falcons, who had 30 attacking errors in

the three-game match. Against BYU Delavane Diaz led the Falcons

attack with 10 kills.

The Falcons return home on Friday to host San Diego State at 7


BYU (18-6, 8-3)

The Cougars cleaned house over the weekend. They swept New

Mexico (30-24, 30-21, 30-20) and Air Force (30-23, 30-11,


“We played a solid all-around match tonight,” said BYU coach

Karen Lamb. “We did what we needed to do for the sweep.”

Sophomore middle blocker Lexi Brown was the only Cougar in

double-digit kills, as she put down a match-high 14, while hitting

.429 against the Lobos. Brown also led the Cougars against the

Falcons with 11 kills, and hit a season-high .556.

BYU will meet in-state rival Utah this week. The Cougars trail

the second-place Utes by one game in the MWC standings. First serve

is at 7 p.m. at the University of Utah.

New Mexico (3-21, 0-10)

The Lobos still look for a MWC win. They lost to BYU in three

(30-24, 30-21, 30-20) on Friday, and lost at Utah (30-26, 30-24,

30-24) on Nov. 1. Senior Anna Reines was a bright spot for the

Lobos. She reached double-digits in kills for the eighth

consecutive match with 10 kills against BYU and 11 against Utah.

But it wasn’t enough as the Lobos losing streak extended to 18.

UNM hosts UNLV Thursday and San Diego State Saturday. Both

matches begin at 7 p.m.

San Diego State (14-11, 5-5)

San Diego State came within a couple of points of upsetting the

16th-ranked team in the nation, but they fell to Colorado State in

five (30-20, 27-30, 27-30, 30-28, 12-15). After the loss, the

Aztecs hoped to start another winning streak, and started promptly

by avenging a loss in Laramie, Wyo., earlier this season by

defeating Wyoming (30-18, 30-26, 30-26) on Saturday. SDSU was led

by the hitting of Aspen McPartland who finished the night with a

team-high 17 kills. The win solidified the Aztecs’ grip on fourth

place in the conference standings, extending their lead over

fifth-place Air Force by two games.

Next for San Diego State is a visit to rival University of San

Diego on Tuesday.

UNLV (10-13, 3-7)

The volleyball team split their weekend with a victory over

Wyoming (30-21, 30-25, 30-19), and a loss to CSU (32-30, 30-27,

30-26, 30-28). Junior Nicki King became UNLV’s career assists

leader with 2,816 in the 3-0 victory over the Cowgirls. Mari-de

Boyer (1996-98) held the previous career assists record with


Against the Rams, UNLV hit .448 in the match, its best team

attack percentage of the season.

UNLV continues conference play on the road next weekend when

they travel to New Mexico on Thursday.

UTAH (15-7, 9-2)

The Utes continue to prove their worthiness by showing their

opponents no mercy. They handled Air Force in a quick three games

(30-24, 30-17, 30-13).

“We were able to come out and take care of business,” said head

coach Beth Launiere.

And to ensure that the Utes mean business, they came back

Saturday with the same intensity and beat New Mexico in three.

The Utes host in-state rival Brigham Young at 7 p.m. Friday in

Crimson Court. Utah has won six straight against the Cougars,

dating back to the 2001 season.

WYOMING (14-12, 3-8)

Wyoming went on the road with hopes to salvage a bit of their

season, but UNLV was too much for the Cowgirls who lost the match

in three (21-30, 25-30, 19-30). As a team, the Cowgirls hit .216,

but were out-blocked 10-4.

And if one sweep weren’t enough, the Cowgirls gave up another

three games to the Aztecs (18-30, 26-30, 26-30). Junior Sara

Maytorena led the Cowgirls with 12 kills.

Wyoming will be on the road this week as they face the Rams on

Friday at 7 p.m., and then travel to Boise, Idaho, to take on the

Boise State Broncos on Sunday.




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