Wyoming’s Postseason Run Ends in Five Sets with Montana State
* University of Wyoming press release
LARAMIE -- The Wyoming Cowgirl volleyball team’s postseason run ended in heartbreak Wednesday night inside the UniWyo Sports Complex as the Cowgirls dropped a five-set battle with Montana State.
Set scores went 25-22, 22-25, 25-21, 23-25 and 8-15.
Wyoming (22-10) jumped on the Bobcats (24-8) early in the contest, leading by as many as nine in the first set, 22-13. However, MSU showed what type of hard-fought match it was going to be on the night as it battled all the way back to make it 22-20 before the Cowgirls were able to close things out with a Paige Lauterwasser kill. In the second set, Montana State stayed in front of UW for the most part, although things remained close. The Bobcats would close the second on a 4-1 run to even the match up at one set each.
The third and fourth sets went a lot like the second. Wyoming controlled much of a close third set and pushed the Bobcats to the brink of elimination with three consecutive kills to close-out the set. In the fourth, it was MSU’s turn to return the favor as it broke a 23-23 tie late, to score back-to-back kills to force a decisive fifth set.
The fifth, unfortunately for the Cowgirls, was controlled from start-to-finish by the Bobcats.
For the match, MSU hit .294 to Wyoming’s .288. The Bobcats also neutralized a dangerous Cowgirl block and out-blocked UW in the match, 11-8. Montana State also had a 7-4 edge in service aces and committed three fewer (10-7) serving errors.
Five Cowgirls ended the match with double-digit kills. Lauterwasser and Schulz led the Wyoming offense with 16 kills each. Those 16 kills set a new career-high for Lauterwasser for the second consecutive contest. Sarah Holcomb and Corin Carruth ended the night with 13 and 12 kills, respectively and hit an impressive .550 and .333, respectively in the loss. Evelyn Udezue set a career-high with 10 kills and hit .391.
Defensively at the net, Holcomb and Udezue led the Cowgirls with four blocks apiece in the loss. While in the back row, Sierra Grizzle led the way with a career-best 21 digs on the night. Three Cowgirls, Kasia Partyka, Schulz and Smith had 12 digs each. Partyka and Schulz tallied their 12th and ninth double-doubles on the year. Partyka, meanwhile, concludes her special season with a season-high 58 assists. Partyka’s 1,299 assists this season are the seventh-most for a single season in program history.
Overall, Wyoming concludes its first season under Head Coach Kaylee Prigge at 22-10 overall and its first trip to the postseason since 2019. 2019 also marked the last time the Cowgirls eclipsed the 20-win mark in a season. Wyoming finished the season 11-4 at home.