Boise State women’s volleyball sweeps Utah State in season home openers

After their fall season was postponed, the Boise State Women’s Volleyball team sprung into action with their first match at home against Utah State. The Broncos swept the Aggies in both matches 3-0 on Feb. 12 and Feb. 13. 

In their first match on Feb. 12, outside hitter Lauren Ohlinger had 13 kills to create a new team-high. 

The first two sets were easy wins for the Broncos, 25-15 and 25-19. But in the third set, the team was down 24-19. However, with Ohlinger’s kills, one service ace, seven digs and six block assists the Broncos came back to win 31-29. 

“I think that the team came out stronger in tonight’s match than they did in either of the matches last week,” said Head Coach Shawn Garus. “I think that shows that they had a good week of practice that they worked hard to prepare to be better.”

During this weekend, Garus won his 200th game while at Boise State. He is now the second most winningest coach in Boise State volleyball history. 

The team’s key factor to winning was the Bronco defense with 14 blocks compared to Utah State who had seven. 

Garus said that he enjoyed the feisty battle in the third set. His team remained aggressive and was patient when necessary in order to take the win. 

Middle blocker Jessica Donahue set a season-high in Friday’s match with 11 block assists. 

Broncos in the back end were big contributors to the team’s win. Libero and outside hitter Allison Casillas collected a team-high of 12 digs and had one service ace. While libero and defensive specialists Jordi Holdaway and Jolei Akima had 19 digs combined.

In the setter’s position, Danielle Boss set a team-best of 33 assists. Along with this, she had four kills, six digs and six block assists. 

“I thought there was a big difference from our games last weekend for sure,” Ohlinger said. “We really practice a lot this week on things like tight game situations. I think it really showed in the last set tonight.”

In their second match against the Aggies, the Broncos came out with another sweep. 

Donahue led the team with a team-high in kills and blocks. Similar to Friday’s match, Boise State won the first two sets with ease but battled hard for their third win. 

The team forfeited the first point in each of the two sets, but after a rally, the Broncos stole the lead. 

Akima led the back end with 15 digs to set a team-high while Casillas contributed 11 digs. 

“I was a little disappointed with our play down the stretch, but I’m happy with the overall result,” Garus said. “I think our team will have the chance to learn from how they felt late in the third set, that can help us. I look forward to getting back in the gym and continuing to improve.”

The Broncos will take on the Cowboys from the University of Wyoming at home next week on Feb. 19 and Feb. 20.

[Photo from a women’s volleyball game in the 2019 season]
Photo by Mackenzie Hudson | The Arbiter

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