Kansas State volleyball delivered their highlight performance of the season with a 3-0 sweep of No. 8 BYU Thursday night. The Wildcats shined as outside hitters Aliyah Carter and Aniya Clinton dominated with 31 combined kills, with Carter collecting a double-double.
The match had a back-and-forth start as Carter took control of every net play. K-State finally broke out late with Carter taking the reins and Clinton finishing off the set 25-18 with a kill off Carter’s sole assist.
Set 2 closely followed the play of Set 1. Carter scored two early strong kills for K-State as the two schools fought for the lead. After two straight Clinton kills, BYU responded with a point of their own before quickly allowing another K-State run. The Wildcats broke through with five straight points with setter Izzi Szulczewski serving and Clinton scoring another two kills. In a change of pace, K-State finished the set with middle blocker Kadye Fernholz’s kill across the right corner of the net.
After the 25-16 set victory, the Wildcats found themselves one set away from a 3-0 sweep of a Top 10 program. The Cougars fought back, taking an early lead, but K-State rose to the occasion. Going from down 8-6 to up 14-9, K-State kept a steady lead.
Up 19-16, a crucial point was decided via a challenge that could have taken away a kill Szulczewski scored against BYU’s leader in kills Erin Livingston. The point was awarded to the Wildcats as K-State then held a four-point lead, just needing five more to bring Morgan Family Arena to a blaze.
K-State ended the battle as Clinton stamped the victory with K-State’s last two kills to end the set 25-19.
The Wildcats move onto a 12-8 record and 6-5 in the Big 12. K-State has won 13 of their last 19 sets and rematches BYU at 6:30 p.m. Friday.