The Boise State women’s volleyball team opened their regular season this past weekend at the sixth annual Northwest Challenge, winning 1-of-3 matches.
Boise State fell 3-0 in straight sets 25-18, 25-16, and 25-16 to the No. 5 ranked Washington Huskies in their first matchup of the tournament.
The Broncos next game would pit them up against the Gonzaga Bulldogs. The women would get their first win of the season in a contest that was full of exciting action, going down to the wire. Boise State would win this game in five sets, 19-25, 25-17, 25-21, 28-30, 15-11.
Boise State’s final game of the Northwest Challenge came against Portland State. The Broncos were unable to carry their momentum into the match against the Vikings as they lost 3-0 in straight sets 15-25, 25-27, 16-25.
“The girls worked hard and battled all weekend, unfortunately we had a couple of injuries that forced us to try some new lineups and that’s just going to take a little time,” Shawn Garus said.
The Broncos found themselves getting off to slow starts in each of their sets against Washington. The Huskies took advantage of that to give themselves comfortable leads in each set.
This forced the Broncos to go on rallies to get themselves back in the games but in the end this proved too much of an obstacle to overcome.
Boise State was led by junior Taylor Murphey who had 10 kills and one block. Senior Sarah Horton added eight kills while sophomore Katelyn Kinghorn had six.
The Broncos once again got off to a slow start and saw Gonzaga pull away midway through the first set to jump into the early lead. However, The Broncos would bounce back in a big way in the second set by going on a 6-0 rally early on, going up by as much as 10 points before finally taking the set.
The next two sets proved to be the most competitive of the match with both teams going back and forth with each other.
In the third set the Broncos would maintain small leads to take the set and go up 2-1 in the contest.
The fourth set saw the Broncos come up with missed opportunities and let the set get away from them. The set saw the Broncos rally back from 21-18 to lead 23-21 but they couldn’t capitalize, losing four match points. That allowed the Bulldogs to take the fourth set and push the match into the fifth and final set.
The fifth set would see the Broncos rebound by controlling the final set on their way to a 3-2 victory over Gonzaga. Boise State was led once again by Murphy who had an all time high of 20 kills to go along with five blocks. Kinghorn had a great game for the Broncos as well by recording her first double-double with 11 kills to 21 digs.
The Vikings got off to a great start and dominated early to take the first set. The Broncos would rebound in the second set to make it competitive, but Portland State proved to be just a little better and that put the women in a 2-0 hole going into the final set.
The Vikings would put the finishing touches on the Broncos in the third set and came away with an impressive sweep.
Kinghorn and Murphy once again led the Broncos, with Kinghorn picking up six kills while Murphy had five.
“We are looking forward to getting back to gym practicing and getting better for next weekend when we head to Chicago for a tounrament,” Garus said.
The Broncos are 1-2 and will head to Chicago next weekend for the Wildcat Challenge, before returning home for the Bronco Classic. on Sep. 12-14.