Four NCAA round-of-16 berths up for grabs, top seeds get under way, NIVC update

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Wisconsin's Tionna Williams, left, and Grace Loberg put up the block against Green Bay's Alexandra Zakutney/Greg Anderson for UW Athletic Communications

Three of Thursday’s eight NCAA Tournament opening-round matches went to five sets.

And the excitement meant an early exit for 13th-seeded UCF, upset by Florida Gulf Coast; a big comeback for Baylor after being down 0-2 to Hawai’i; and a huge victory for Pepperdine over Northern Iowa. The other winners were Florida, Texas State, Texas, Wisconsin and Oregon.

Accordingly, four spots in the round of 16 will be at stake on Friday night as the rest of the field gets under way.

That would include the top four seeds — Stanford, Minnesota, Illinois, and BYU — as the field of 64 will be more than cut in half.

Thursday’s recaps follow, plus results from the first round of play in the NIVC — where Bradley’s Erica Haslag had 29 kills in a victory over Bowling Green — but first a complete list of Friday’s schedule. 

All the broadcast and streaming links can be found at VolleyballMag.com’s daily TV listings.

NCAA second round
At UCF
Florida (25-6), vs FGCU (27-6) 7 p.m.
At Texas
Texas State (27-6) vs. Texas (21-4), 9 p.m.
At Wisconsin
Pepperdine (22-8) vs. Wisconsin (23-6), 8 p.m.
At Oregon
Baylor (20-8) vs. Oregon (21-10), 10 p.m.
NCAA first round
At Pittsburgh
Michigan (22-9) vs. Navy (23-8), 4 p.m.
Pittsburgh (29-1) vs Iona (20-7), 7 p.m.
At Creighton
Saint Mary’s (19-9) vs. Washington (18-12), 4:30 p.m.
Creighton (28-4) vs. South Dakota (21-9), 7 p.m.
At Kentucky
Purdue (23-8) vs. East Tennessee State (28-6), 5 p.m.
Kentucky (24-4) vs. Murray State (22-9), 7:30 p.m.
At Penn State
Syracuse (18-8) vs. Yale (19-4), 5 p.m.
Penn State (23-7) vs. Howard (20-10), 7:30 p.m.
At Nebraska
Arizona (22-10) vs. Missouri (23-7), 5:30 p.m.
Nebraska (24-6) vs. Hofstra (25-7), 8 p.m.
At Marquette
Cincinnati (25-7) vs. Illinois State (25-7), 5:30 p.m.,
Marquette (26-6) vs. High Point (21-9), 8 p.m.
At Minnesota
South Carolina (19-9) vs. Colorado (18-13), 5:30 p.m.
Minnesota (25-3) vs. Bryant (22-12), 8 p.m.
At Illinois
Louisville (21-8) vs. Dayton (23-7), 5:30 p.m.
Illinois (28-3) vs. Eastern Michigan (21-13), 8 p.m.
At BYU
Utah (18-13) vs. Denver (27-2), 6 p.m
BYU (27-1) vs. Stony Brook (21-8), 9 p.m
At Washington State
Tennessee (25-5) vs. Colorado State (23-7), 7 p.m.
Washington State (21-9) vs. Northern Arizona (26-8), 10 p.m.
At Stanford
Loyola Marymount (20-9) vs. Duke (16-11), 7:30 p.m.
Stanford (28-1) vs. Alabama State (23-17), 10 p.m.
At USC
San Diego (16-12) vs. Cal Poly (25-2), 9 p.m.
USC (21-10) vs. Samford (19-14), 11 p.m.
Florida State’s Tionna Jackson, left, and Taryn Knuth try to stop Florida’s Paige Hammons/FSU photo

At UCF: Florida of the SEC (25-6) blasted Florida State of the ACC (19-10) 25-21, 25-20, 25-13. Paige Hammons led the Gators with 16 kills and one error in 33 attacks to hit .455, and added an ace, three digs and three blocks, one solo. Rachael Kramer, who had nine blocks — one solo — and Thayer Hall — back after missing more than a month with an injury — had nine kills each. Payton Caffrey had 14 kils to lead FSU.

Then the home team, having its best season ever and riding a 24-match winning streak, ran into the FGCU buzzsaw. FGCU (27-6 in turn won its 16th in a row as the ASUN champs ousted UCF (27-4), which dominated the American Athletic Conference.

Cortney VanLiew was big for FGCU, leading with 25 kills in 79 attacks but hit .190, 12 digs, an ace and two blocks. Snowy Burnham had 15 kills and 26 digs. FGCU won despite hitting .177. McKenna Melville capped her magnificent freshman season with 24 kills in 69 attacks. She added 16 digs and three blocks, one solo. 

Florida — which played in the 2017 NCAA championship match — and FGCU — making its first NCAA appearance — did not play this season.

At Texas: Texas State, which got past Rice, will face fifth-seeded Texas, which crushed Stephen F. Austin. Texas won in three when they played in early September.

Texas State (27-6), which won the Sun Belt, had to grind past Conference USA-champion Rice (24-7) 23-25, 25-22, 25-22, 27-25 to get into the second round for the first time in coach Karen Chisum’s 39-year tenure. 

Chyenne Huskey led with 23 kills, an assist, an ace, 12 digs and two blocks, one solo. Amy Pflughaupt had 13 kills and Volleyball Baton Rouge-product Madison Daigle had 11 kills, hitting .474, including the match-ender. She added an ace, three digs and three blocks. And Janell Fitzgerald had 10 kills and four blocks, one solo.

Nicole Lennon led Rice with 19 kills, 12 digs and four blocks, and Anota Adekunle had 15 kills, hit .481, and had 10 blocks, two solo.

Texas (21-4), the Big 12 winner, won its 11th match in a row with a 25-14, 25-17, 25-21 sweep of Southland Conference-champion SFA, which ended its season 32-3 and saw its 29-match winning streak end.

Logan Eggleston led with 14 kills. She had one error in 22 swings and hit .591 and had three digs and a block. Micaya White had 12 kills, an ace, eight digs and two blocks, one solo. Haley Coleman had seven kills for SFA, which hit .063.

At Wisconsin: Pepperdine of the West Coast Conference (22-8) is in the second round for the first time since 2011 with its 25-22, 25-21, 19-25, 20-25, 15-13 win over Northern Iowa (24-10), the Missouri Valley champion. The Waves got 22 kills from Shannon Scully, who had an assist, an ace, 13 digs and three blocks. Hannah Frohling had 16 kills, hitting .300, and added10 digs and a block, Heidi Dyer had 13 kills and Tarah Wylie had 11 and four blocks. Setter Blossom Sato had 57 assists, two aces and 16 digs.

Karlie Taylor led UNI’s balanced attck with 23 kills, 13 digs, an assist and four solo blocks. Piper Thomas and Jaydlin Seehase had 13 kills each, Katie Busswitz had 11 and Inga Rotto 10. Setter Rachel Koop had four kills in six errorless swings, 58 assists, an ace and nine digs to go with a block. 

In the nightcap, the Big Ten’s Wisconsin (23-6) overwhelmed Green Bay of the Horizon League (20-11) in the first and third sets 25-9, 27-25, 25-15. Molly Haggerty led the Badgers with 10 kills, hitting .346, and had 15 digs and an ace. Dana Rettke added nine kills and five blocks, two solo. Tionna Williams had seven kills and five blocks. Alexandra Zakutney led Green Bay, which hit .030, with 13 kills, a dig and three blocks.

This will be the first meeting.

At Oregon: Baylor of the Big 12 (20-8) advanced the hard way, rallying for a 23-25, 23-25, 25-14, 26-24, 16-14 victory over Hawai’i of the Big West (18-9). 

Baylor, into the second round for the third year in a row, will play Oregon of the Pac-12 (21-10), which got past NM State of the WAC (24-8) 25-22, 18-25, 25-21, 25-11.

Baylor hit .152 and Hawai’i 063. Shelly Fanning led Baylor with 18 kills and hit .400 after making two errors in 40 swings. She added an assist, 10 blocks and three digs. Yossiana Pressley had 17 kills but hit .088. She had nine digs and a block. Aniah Philo had 14 kills but hit .080. Philo had 21 digs and four blocks. 

McKenna Granato (.018) and Norene Iosia (.000) had 11 kills each for Hawai’i. 

Oregon got a big boost from an 10-point serving run by Willow Johnson in the fourth set. Johnson finished with six kills, three digs, three blocks and four aces. Lindsey Vander Weide had 18 kills, hit .447 after making one error in 38 attacks, and added three assists, 10 digs, and six blocks, one solo. Oregon hit .315.

NM State’s Julianna Salanoa led with 15 kills, hitting .357. Tatyana Battle had 14 kills, hit .400, and had an assist, three aces, nine digs and a block. Savannah Davison added 11 kills, an assist, an ace, 10 digs and a solo block.

NIVC: There were 16 winners Thursday. The schedule, recaps and boxscores can all be found at NIVC Tournament Central.

Round 1
Radford 3, Appalachian State 1 (23-25, 25-17, 25-20, 25-19)
College of Charleston 3, St. John’s 1 (19-25, 25-20, 26-24, 25-18)
Valparaiso 3, Ball State 1 (25-9, 13-25, 25-23, 25-18)
Portland 3, Northern Colorado 0 (25-19, 25-15, 25-18)
Bradley 3, Bowling Green 2 (26-24, 21-25, 23-25, 25-21, 15-13)
Wichita St. 3, Central Arkansas 2 (20-25, 25-18, 25-13, 23-25, 15-11)
Clemson 3, Alabama A&M 0 (25-9, 25-19, 25-15)
California Baptist 3, Little Rock 2 (17-25, 25-12, 25-17, 20-25, 15-11)
Miami-Ohio 3, Northern Kentucky 0 (25-14, 25-18, 25-22)
Georgia Tech 3, USF 2 (19-25, 14-25, 25-21, 25-17, 15-9)
Iowa State 3, Drake 0 (25-16, 27-25, 25-22)
North Texas 3, Tulsa 1 (13-25, 25-17, 25-23, 25-21)
Fresno St. 3, UC Santa Barbara 2 (25-23, 22-25, 25-16, 26-28, 15-11)
Tulane 3, Arkansas State 2 (23-25, 27-25, 22-25, 25-8, 15-13)
Utah Valley 3, Wyoming 2 (11-25, 28-26, 23-25, 25-22, 21-19)
UNLV 3, UC Irvine 0 (25-19, 25-23, 25-19)
Round 2 (all times Eastern)
Wichita State (14-17) at North Texas (18-16), 6:30 p.m.
Valparaiso (26-10) at Miami-Ohio (23-8), 7 p.m. ET
College of Charleston (22-11) at Georgia Tech (18-14), 7 p.m.
Radford (22-6) at Clemson (18-14), 7 p.m.
​Bradley (24-8) at Iowa State (17-13), 7:30 p.m.
California Baptist (20-10) at Tulane (26-8), 8 p.m.
Portland (19-12) vs. Utah Valley (20-13), 8:30 at Wyoming
Fresno State (21-10) at UNLV (20-11), 10 p.m.

Nights of note include Haslag’s 29 kills for Bradley and in the same match, teammate Yavianliz getting 41 digs in a five-set win, and Bowling Green’s Kallie Seimet, the libero who was the two-time MAC player of the year, had 33 digs … Tabitha Brown and Megan Taflinger had 22 kills each for Wichita State in its five-set win over Central Arkansas … Mariana Brambilla had 22 kills and hit .413 for Georgia Tech in its five-set win over USF.

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