BYU lost by a sweep for the third match in a row as the No. 7 Cougars went to No. 5 Pepperdine on Wednesday night and came up empty again, this time in the MPSF opener for both teams.
Pepperdine (7-2, 1-0) won 25-17, 25-19, 25-18 as David Wieczorek had 12 kills and Michael Wexter 10 and both had five of the Wave’s 13 aces against just eight service errors.
Wieczorek hit .435 and had four digs and three blocks. Wexter hit .368 and had a dig and a block. Their team hit .400. Kaleb Denmark added eight kills, seven digs and an ace and Max Chamberlain, who had one error in eight swings, had six kills to hit .625 to go with three digs, three blocks and a two aces.
BYU (4-3, 0-1), which hit .318, got 13 kills from Gabi Garcia Fernandez. He hit .333 and had one of the Cougars’ three aces against nine errors, three digs and two blocks. Davide Gardini had seven kills with one error in 12 swings to hit .500. He added an assist, three digs and two blocks.
“Pepperdine put good service pressure on us and we couldn’t find a way to slow that down,” BYU coach Shawn Olmstead said. “We allowed them to get in a good rhythm. Our offense became too predictable with our passing which made it a long night for our attackers.”
This may be the first time BYU — which lost twice 3-0 at UC Santa Barbara last week — has ever been swept three times in a row. Quick research showed it hasn’t happened in the past decade.
BYU finished 22-7 last season and also had an early stretch in which it lost three in a row, but only one by sweep. In 2015, BYU had a six-match losing streak but none of those losses were a sweep. BYU lost its last four matches of the 2014 regular season, but only one by sweep.
Thursday’s schedule shows another big MPSF match when No. 9 Stanford goes to No. 4 UCLA.
Hawai’i is making a East Coast swing as the second-ranked Rainbow Warriors of the Big West play at Queens in North Carolina.
The MIVA has one Thursday match when McKendree goes to No. 11 Ball State. The EIVA and Conference Carolinas are off until Friday.