Utah Volleyball Splits Series in Washington


The University of Utah Volleyball team plays against Arizona State University in the Huntsman Center, University of Utah Campus, Salt Lake City, UT on Friday, November 1st, 2019. (Photo by Mark Draper | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Mallory Arnold , Sports Writer

The No. 15 University of Utah volleyball team was in Washington this weekend, where they took on No. 22 Washington State and No. 13 Washington. The team was able to pull off the win against the Cougars but lost in a hard five-set battle to the Huskies. This brings their season record to 19-8, 11-5 Pac-12. 

Last weekend the Utes were in Southern California, where they played USC and UCLA. They went five sets with the Trojans and four with the Bruins but came out victorious in both matches. 

For their first match, the Utes headed to Pullman to take on the Cougars on Friday, Nov. 15. Earlier in the season, Washington State took the five-set battle with the Utes, where Dani Drews had a whopping 31 kills. This time around, the Utes were able to pull off the win and stay hot on the road. In the first set, Utah was behind 13-18 but went on a 5-0 run with 4 blocks to tie it up at 18 and then take the set 27-25.

In the second set, the Utes went a 3-0 run early to take the lead 7-3, and Utah remained hot to take the second 25-15. When the third set came around, the Utes took the lead early again at 7-2, but the Cougars were able to answer back, tying it up at 22 and taking the set 23-25. For the fourth and final set, the Utes led the whole time, going up 15-8 and winning the match 25-19. This is Utah’s fifth win in a row and third on the road. 

Drews led the team again with 22 kills, 5 blocks and 10 digs. Zoe Weatherington tabbed 11 kills, Kenzie Koerber had 9 and Berkeley Oblad wasn’t far behind with 8. Oblad also had 5 blocks and Koerber got 3. Brianna Doehrmann led the defense with 20 digs — she is 19 digs away from the second most in program history. The Utes had a .246 hitting percentage in the match. 

Next Utah went up to Seattle to take on the Huskies in their Sunday afternoon match. When Washington came to Salt Lake, the Utes were able to take the match from the strong team in four sets.

For the first set in Sunday’s match, the Utes and Huskies were even until Washington went on 4-0 run to lead 9-13 and take the first set 18-25. In the second set the Huskies led but Utah fought back to take the lead at 16-13 then later take set two 25-20. The Utes stayed dominant in the third to take it 25-18. The Huskies got hot in fourth, leading 5-12 and taking it 14-25. For the fifth and final set, it was a point-for-point battle where the Utes went on a 3-0 run to take the lead 12-8, but the Huskies answered back tying it up at 14-14. The Huskies kept tying it up, eventually taking set five 19-21. 

Oblad reached a career milestone in the game, totaling 13 kills and hitting her 1,000th career kill. She became the sixth player in program history to have 400 career blocks and 1,000 kills. Drews had 19 kills and Doehrmann tabbed 18 digs to tie her for second in program history for digs. 

The Utes will be back home in the Jon. M Huntsman Center to take on the strong northern California teams in No. 4 Stanford and No. 20 Cal. The first game will be Friday at 7 p.m. and the following on Sunday at 12 p.m. Both will be broadcasted on the Pac-12 Networks.


[email protected]