Sweep success at home

Saturday the Boise State Broncos (6-4) wrapped up their weekend at the Boise State Invitational Tournament against the University of California, Irvine (4-6).

The final match of the tournament served as the de facto championship as both teams came in undefeated on the weekend.

Boise State got off to a fast start in the first set. After being tied 4-4, the Broncos took hold of the set, even stretching their lead to as much as 10 at one point.  With the crowd clapping and on their feet, the Broncos took the first 25-16.

The second set saw the Broncos have to claw for every point. UC Irvine took the early lead, going up by six at one point in the set. But Boise State would not quit, running off an 8-0 run to take the lead 21-18. The set saw only one lead change, but that was all the Broncos needed as they won the 25-23 to take a 2-0 lead.

Down two sets, UC Irvine would not give up. The third set saw back and forth action between the two teams as they tied 13 times and swapped the lead nine times. UC Irvine had match-point at 24-20. With some help from the bench, the Broncos ran off four consecutive points to get back into the set, but it was not enough as they lost the set 25-27.

“In the time that we’ve been here, we’ve never had this kind of depth,” Head Coach Shawn Garus said.  “I really think that the role players did a great job of keeping us in matches and giving us options to find other ways to get back into games.”

The fourth match was another close set, as neither team could pull away. The Broncos finally won the set (25-21) and the match (3-1) to sweep the Boise State Invitational Tournament.

“I love the feeling of winning,” senior Liz Harden said. “We’ve worked so hard this offseason, the summer and the fall; it finally paid off to get all three wins at home and to win the tournament.”

Sophomore Alyssa Gammel led the team with 20 kills and Harden adding 17 more. Casey Rose had 25 assists on the day while Kersti Whitney tallied 30 digs.
Harden was also named MVP of the tournament with Gammel and Whitney making the
all-tournament team.

The Broncos started the tournament strong on Friday, sweeping Southern Utah in straight sets 26-24, 25-11, 25-14. While the Broncos breezed by in their first match, their second match would test their
mettle.

Facing San Jose State University, the Broncos had to fight all five sets before notching the victory 23-25, 25-19, 25-19, 24-26, 16-14 and go 2-0 in the
tournament.

After starting the season 2-4, the Broncos went 4-0 on their opening home stand, including a 3-0 sweep of Eastern Washington earlier in the week.

“What we really do is focus on the little things to do right. I think that this weekend it definitely showed that we were able to do that and pull out with the win,” Gammel said.

 

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