Utah volleyball had two outstanding matches this weekend, taking two wins against both Oregon and Oregon State.
“We have been putting in the work,” said head coach Beth Launiere. “We just keep getting better and better because we are putting in the work. We had a good set of practices, and we focused on our offense, put them in some mentally tough situations because it was fall break and we felt like we could challenge them. I thought they really responded and it helped this weekend to be able to handle some of the situations we were in.”
The first match saw the Utes take on the Beavers of Oregon State. The Utes started strong, taking the first two sets 25-18 and 32-30. The Beavers came back, taking control of set three and set four at 25-22 and 25-20. Matched with two set wins, both teams put in as much effort as they could in set five. The Utes stepped up their defensive play with four blocks and libero Brianna Doehrmann had eight of her 22 digs of the night during set five. Utah took the last set 15-13, taking the win.
Sunday afternoon, the Utes finished off the weekend with a four-set victory over No. 14 Oregon. This is the second victory the Utes have had over a ranked team this season.
Utah started off with the lead, taking both the first and second set. During the third set Oregon changed their lineup, which was difficult for Utah to adjust to. The Utes came close to taking set three by spoiling two set points, but Oregon pushed through and took a 26-24 victory in set three.
“After set 3, I was really really mad, so I started to pick up my intensity,” said outside hitter Kenzie Koerber. “I think a lot of us were playing with that fire to win the fourth set and not go to five.”
The Utes came back with the fire that Koerber described in set four, quickly taking a 14-6 lead. Oregon pushed and ended up tying the score at 23, but the Utes finished off with a win of 25-23, taking the victory in four against No. 14 Oregon.