by staff–4 Nov ’16
Both Laura Beach and Kayla Slofkiss recorded double-digit kills to help lift the University of Wyoming Cowgirl volleyball team to a 3-1 (25-18, 25-16, 19-25, 25-13) win over New Mexico on Thursday night in the UniWyo Sports Complex. The victory was the fourth-straight for Wyoming (16-9, 9-3 MW) over the Lobos.
“New Mexico has a lot of fire power and our defense was great for three sets,” UW head coach Chad Callihan said. “During that third set New Mexico was able to get anything they wanted and they were taking advantage of it. We needed to bring that defensive intensity back during the fourth set. Although New Mexico created a little rhythm, our girls did a nice job of responding and closing out the match.”
Slofkiss recorded her fourth double-double of the season with 14 kills and 13 digs against UNM (14-13, 4-8 MW). She was joined by fellow senior Courtney Chacon who had her seventh double-double of the year with a match-high 43 assists to go along with 14 digs. Beach brought home a match-best 15 kills on 20 swings, to hit for a .700 clip against New Mexico. She also recorded three blocks on Thursday as Slofkiss tied her season-high with six.
Freshman Madi Fields had a season-high 20 digs for the Brown and Gold. She also had four assists and led both squads with four service aces. Freshman Tara Traphagan recorded a career-best nine kills for UW and also had two blocks, while sophomore Reed Copeland smashed home six kills in addition to five total blocks for Wyoming.
Sophomore Emily Lewis had five kills and three digs for the Cowgirls. Additionally, redshirt freshman Bayly Poor added three kills and one dig while celebrating her birthday against New Mexico.
Set 1: After trading points, a Chacon service ace moved UW’s early lead to three, 7-4. UW utilized an 11-5 run to break out to an 18-9 advantage. With a 20-14 lead, Wyoming called timeout after two straight kills from the Lobos. UNM claimed two points after that timeout, but the Cowgirls rallied to take the first set, 25-18. Beach and Slofkiss each recorded four kills in the opening set. Chacon dished out ten assists as Fields had seven digs.
Set 2: Much like the first set, Wyoming held leads of seven and nine at different points in the second stanza. New Mexico showed its fight to keep things close early but when tied at five, the Lobos committed two attacking errors to give Wyoming a 7-5 lead. The Cowgirls ran with it and caused New Mexico to call a timeout with a 16-9 lead. Behind two kills from Beach and one from Slofkiss, UW took a late lead of 23-14 before a kill from Lewis and another attacking error from UNM gave UW the set, 25-16. Beach sailed home five kills in the second set, while Chacon had 11 assists.
Set 3: New Mexico hit .696 to take the third set from Wyoming. After the Lobos took the first point, UW was never able to take a lead during the set despite four ties. The Lobos recorded 17 kills compared to Wyoming’s 12 in the third. Beach had half of UW’s 12 kills during the frame while Chacon once again had 11 digs.
Set 4: Copeland, Slofkiss and Traphagan led the Brown and Gold with four kills each during the fourth and final set. The Cowgirls fired early and often to open with a 4-0 advantage. Leads of 12-5 and 20-9 proved too much for New Mexico as Wyoming closed out the match on a 10-5 run. A fourth set score of 25-13 gave UW its tenth win at home this season.
The Cowgirls will return to action on Saturday, as they host UNLV for a 1 p.m. MT match in the UniWyo Sports Complex.