As if Utah Volleyball sweeping No 19 USC on Friday wasn't enough to make their weekend special. Sweeping No 15 UCLA in the same weekend? Remarkable. The Utes came into this weekend, what seems like every week in the Pac 12, facing ranked teams. Friday's victory may have helped propel Utah to their second three-set sweep in three days, this time against UCLA.
"We just picked up two wins this weekend over two great teams," said Utah head coach Beth Launiere. "I think we are a good team and we have been saying that all along. It definitely helped to get back home and get rested up. We had our fans behind us and we had a good week of practice as well. When you have these things in place, good things happen."
The Utes and the Bruins had a back and forth battle in the first set. Neither team dominating, until Utah went on a 5-1 run toward the end of the set, putting the Utes up 23-19 before finishing off UCLA 25-23.
The second set a 3-0 run saw the Utes up 12-9, but the Bruins had plans to take the set with a 6-1 run of their own. Utah battled back to even the set a 19-19. A back and forth battle, in which Senior Shelby Dalton, who was a force at the net all night, recorded a kill toward the end of the set, helping Utah to the 25-23 set win.
The Utes began the third set up 4-2, and the Bruins answered evening up the match at 5-5. After both teams traded points, UCLA went on a roll with 6 straight, and pushed their lead up to 11-8. Utah battled back, and found themselves on to 17-13 after a pair of great blocks. Utah never relinquished that lead, and took the third set 25-22, and swept the Bruins, and swept both LA schools on the weekend.
A couple freshman came up big for the Utah with Eliza Katoa with 11 and Adora Anae with 9 kills in the match. Freshman Carley Trueman had 7 kills and had .500 hitting. The Utes had total of 45 kills in the match. The Bruins were led by Senior Karsta Lowe who finished the match with 17 of the UCLA's 44 kills.
The Utes will hope to carry this momentum into this week's matches against Washington State and Washington. The Utes start on Thursday, Nov. 13, with a home match against Washington State. The match will be aired live on the Pac-12 Networks with a first serve set for 8 p.m. MT inside the Huntsman Center.