The coaches are back together — George Mason’s Jay Hosack, Dan Friend of Lewis, and Pepperdine’s David Hunt — as the five conferences decided their automatic bids for winning their respective league tournaments.
We also talk about the best performances of the past week and what’s ahead as the NCAA field gets set.
MPSF — The seven teams are in Provo, Utah, where host and top-seeded BYU awaits to play in Friday’s semifinals. But first on Thursday, No. 7-seeded Concordia plays No. 2 UCLA at 2 p.m. Mountain, followed by fifth-seeded USC vs. No. 4 Grand Canyon and No. 5 Stanford against second-seeded Pepperdine.
BIG WEST — It’s tough to go there as a tourist, but the league’s volleyball teams are at Hawai’i, where the unbeaten Rainbow Warriors are the top seed. On Thursday, third-seeded Long Beach State plays No 6 UC Irvine at 7:30 p.m. Pacific, followed by No. 4 UC San Diego vs. fifth-seeded CSUN. The winners move on to play Friday against second-seeded UC Santa Barbara and Hawai’i.
MIVA — The championship match features top-seeded Lewis playing host to Chicago rival and second-seeded Loyola on Saturday.
EIVA — Semifinal action at Penn State starts at 4:30 p.m. Eastern when third-seeded George Mason plays second-seeded NJIT, followed by fourth-seeded Saint Francis vs. the top-seeded Nittany Lions. The championship is Saturday.
CONFERENCE CAROLINAS — Belmont Abbey beat Mount Olive last week and won the tournament and the league’s automatic bid.