Stanford men’s volleyball (3-13, 1-4 MPSF) came out strong, winning the first two sets on Saturday against BYU, to then fall in the last three and be defeated by the No. 6 team in the nation.
The Cardinal faced an extremely tough opponent last Saturday night on the road at Smith Fieldhouse. The team had already lost 1-3 against BYU on the previous Wednesday, so the matchup was harder than ever. Still, the Cardinal went out there with grits and momentum, hoping to overcome one of the highest-ranked teams they’ve played all season. The first set started out in favor of BYU, who quickly took a 12-8 lead, hitting .500 to the Cardinal’s .143. The team managed to keep up with the Cougars, trailing 15-13 and then taking a 17-16 lead with kills by sophomore outside hitter Eric Beatty and freshman outside hitter JP Reilly. Soon, the teams were battling it out with a 23-23 tie; fifth-year senior middle blocker Kevin Rakestraw was able to get the last kill in, winning the set 25-23 for the Cardinal. The first set saw a .387 attack percentage for Stanford.
Stanford started out hot again in the second set, riding on the momentum and quickly gaining a 19-9 lead. The Cougars retaliated with a run of their own, and the lead was cut to 23-20. But the Cardinal held tight, finishing the second set 25-20 with a .350 clip.
BYU was able to get its team back in order, taking the next three sets 25-14, 25-20, 15-12. The third set saw the Cougars render a formerly strong Cardinal incapable of getting far, starting with an 11-4 lead for the home team and ending with a .400 clip for BYU and a -.074 clip for Stanford.
The away team put up a bigger fight in the last two sets, keeping the BYU lead to a minimum, but not managing to get the victory.
Freshman opposite Jaylen Jasper led the Cardinal team with 18 kills and 12 digs, followed by Beatty with 14 kills and four digs and Rakestraw with seven kills. Jasper and Beatty are ranked 22 and 60 in the NCAA, respectively, in attacks per set and 19 and 49, respectively, in kills per set. Rakestraw is ranked 14 in hitting percentage, sporting a .388 clip.
Freshman middle blocker Kyler Presho earned eight kills and two blocks, and Reilly contributed six kills, two digs and two aces.
Junior setter Russell Dervay notched 44 assists and 10 digs, getting his first ever double-double. Dervay currently stands at number 16 in the nation in assists per set. Senior libero Evan Enriques, ranked 22 in the NCAA for digs per set, recorded 11 in Saturday’s match.
The Cardinal’s next match will be against No. 2 UCLA on Thursday at 7 p.m. in Maples Pavilion.
Contact Laura Sussman at laura111 ‘at’ stanford.edu