Utah Volleyball has Tough Weekend in Washington


Julia Chuang

The University of Utah women’s volleyball team takes on the USC Trojans at the Jon. M. Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, on Oct. 28 2022. (Photo by Julia Chuang | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Max Lepore, Sports Writer


The University of Utah volleyball team competed in their second to last set of matches of the regular season this past weekend. They traveled up to Washington to face Pac-12 rivals No. 25 Washington State and No. 21 Washington on Friday and Sunday, respectively. Here’s how the Utes competed against the Pacific Northwest rivals:


To open up their first set against the Cougars, the Utes found themselves down 13-7 early. Utah was able to piece together a 6-1 run and tightened the lead to just 14-13 midway through the set. The Cougars countered the Utes run with a 4-1 run of their own, building their lead to 18-14. The teams went back and forth, but ultimately the Utes could not overcome the deficit and lost the first set 25-20.

The Utes found themselves down 10-4 to Washington State early in the second set. The two teams were able to go back and forth throughout the set, with both teams putting together 3-0 runs. However, the early deficit for the Utes was too much to overcome, and they struggled to score late in the set, leading to a Cougar 25-12 win, giving them a 2-0 lead in the set.

Facing elimination, the Utes found themselves down 11-8 early in the third set. They managed to put together a 3-1 run to tighten the Washington State lead to just 12-11, and they maintained the close score throughout the rest of the set. Later on, the Utes found themselves down just 19-17. However, Utah finally broke down and the Cougars put together a 6-1 run to close both the set and the match, winning 25-18 and 3-0 respectively. KJ Burgess and Madelyn Robinson both had strong sets, but it was not enough to beat the nationally-ranked Washington State Cougars.


Coming off a tough night against the Cougars, the Utes faced another difficult matchup, having to face the No. 21 Washington Huskies. 

Utah found themselves down 9-2 early to start off their first set against the Huskies. The Utes responded well, cutting the lead to 13-10 after an 8-4 run. However, Washington went on a couple of runs and was able to eventually push their lead over Utah to 20-13. Lauren Jardine scored a point for the Utes with a kill, but a 5-1 run from the Huskies eventually gave them the 25-15 victory.

The second set was close to start, with a Husky 3-0 run giving them a 13-9 lead over the Utes midway through the set. Allie Olsen was able to earn a kill, but the Huskies responded with a 4-1 run, setting a pace that would eventually give them a 21-13 lead. Utah managed a 4-1 run to tighten the match, but the Huskies managed a 3-1 run to put the Utes out in the second set, giving them a 25-17 victory and a 2-0 set lead.

Facing back-to-back sweeps, the Utes found themselves down again in the third set, with an 11-5 Washington lead. Utah was able to put together a 5-2 run to tighten the lead, but a 5-0 response from Washington gave them a commanding 17-9 lead. The Utes did not give up, with Emily Smith and Burgess helping cut the lead to 22-19 late in the set, forcing Washington into a timeout. The two teams went back and forth, until Washington saw its lead cut to 24-22. However, they managed to put together one final point before Utah could muster anything else, and they won the set and the match with a final score of 25-22 and 3-0, respectively.

The Utes will have one last chance to rebound in the regular season, as they will play Arizona State and Colorado over Thanksgiving week on Wednesday and Friday, respectively. The Utes have had many highs and lows this season, and they will look to finish off the regular season on a strong note over this upcoming weekend.


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