NCAA volleyball: BYU men beat UCSB, SDSU hires a coach while Penn loses one

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NCAA mens volleyball 2/1/2020-Emmanuel volleyball-Don Thompson
Emmanuel's Don Thompson hits against Limestone/Andrea Friddle photo

Unbeaten and second-ranked BYU (featured here Friday) won the NCAA men’s volleyball match of the night when the Cougars beat previously unbeaten No. 3 UC Santa Barbara in four sets. 

Also Friday, USC snapped a six-match losing streak, Ball State upset No. 7 Penn State, and Don Thompson had 33 kills as Emmanuel won for the first time this season.

On the women’s side, San Diego State hired a head coach, while Penn now has an opening.

The news and recaps follow, but first a look at Saturday’s men’s schedule.

Three more MPSF-Big West matches highlight the Saturday slate as UCSB is back at BYU, UC Irvine is at USC, and UCLA plays at Long Beach State. 

There is an MPSF match as both teams open league play when Stanford plays at Grand Canyon.

Also in the Big West CSUN is home for the EIVA’s Princeton.

There are three more MIVA-EIVA matches when Ohio State goes to Penn State, Ball State plays plays Saint Francis (PA) and Lewis plays George Mason. 

Also in the MIVA Loyola plays Barton of Conference Carolinas, while three others play independents when McKendree faces Tusculum, Quincy faces St. Xavier, and Lindenwood faces Urbana.

There is a Conference Carolinas match when Belmont Abbey plays Lees-McRae, while Erskine plays Webber International.

To watch any match that is being streamed or broadcast, go to the VolleyballMag.com TV listings.

Coaching carousel: San Diego State didn’t go far to get its new head coach.

Brent Hilliard, who has been an assistant for 19 years at the University of San Diego, takes over a team that finished 15-14 last season, 8-10 in the Mountain West. The Aztecs, coached the past 11 years by Deitre Collins-Parker, haven’t been to the NCAA Tournament since 2012. 

Hilliard played at Long Beach State where in 1992 he was named the national player of the year. He played on the USA team that won Olympic bronze in 1992. He’s also coached girls club for Wave …

Just two days earlier Penn assistant coach Christina Kremer left the Ivy League school to take the head-coaching job at Gardner-Webb. Now Penn head coach Ian Braddack has resigned after two seasons when the Quakers finished 17-29 overall, 7-19 in the Ivy …

New Ohio State coach Jen Flynn Oldenburg added former Virginia Tech head coach Jill Wilson to her staff …

Head-coaching openings remain at at least 10 Division I schools, including USC of the Pac-12 and NC State of the ACC, which announced it was making a change on December 20. Among the other openings are Bucknell, Fairleigh Dickinson, Merrimack, Northeastern, Portland State, Radford, Seattle, and UNCW. 

MPSF vs. Big West: Gabi Garcia Fernandez had 18 kills with no errors in 34 attacks and the Cougars are 9-0 after beating UCSB (6-1) 25-16, 21-25, 25-21, 25-17. The same teams play again in Provo 6 p.m. Mountain Saturday. 

Fernandez hit .529 and added an assist, three aces, 10 digs and four blocks. Davide Gardini had 12 kills, an assist, an ace, nine digs and four blocks. Zach Eschenberg had eight kills and seven digs and Wil Stanley had three kills in six attempts, 42 assists and eight digs. 

“This was an exciting match to be part of,” said BYU coach Shawn Olmstead, whose team hit .402 and had seven aces and 12 errors.

“They were really aggressive, and I like how we responded. Our ball control is continuing to get better and better, so we’re building on those things. They had us on our heels for a lot of that match, so I’m proud of the guys and how they responded.”

UCSB’s Randy DeWeese had 15 kills, two assists, three aces, five digs and two blocks, one solo. Keenan Sanders had 10 kills with no errors in 14 attacks and hit .714. Roy McFarland and Brandon Hicks had nine kills each. The Gauchos hit .272 and had six aces and 19 errors …

Both team are 2-6 after USC won at CSUN 25-20, 20-25, 20-25, 25-21, 18-16.

USC, which hit .387 and had six aces and 18 errors, had seven players with six or more kills. Billy Fauntleroy led with 16 as he hit .407 and had an ace, a block and four digs. Adam Flood had 12 kills with no errors in 23 swings and hit .522 to go with three assists, an ace, a block and nine digs. Vecas Lewin had 11 kills with no errors in 18 attacks and hit .611, Brandon Browning had 10 kills and hit .438, and Sam Lewis had eight kills in 13 errorless swings to go with four blocks, one solo. Chris Hall had two kills, 61 assists, two blocks and five digs. 

Maciej Ptaszynski had 18 kills and hit .394 for CSUN and had an assist, an ace, two blocks and four digs. Griffin Walters had 15 kills, Kyle Hobus 13 and Daniel Wetter 12. CSUN hit .360 and had six aces and 15 errors … 

Concordia (4-3), tied for No. 13 in the AVCA Poll, won at UC San Diego (7-3) as Raymond Barsemian and Jordan Hoppe had 11 kills each in the 25-21, 19-25, 25-16, 25-19 victory. Noah Lassandro had nine kills in 10 errorless swings. CUI hit .304 and had eight aces and 18 errors.

UCSD hit .181 and had two aces and 13 errors. Kyle McCauley led with 19 kills, two assists, seven digs and four blocks, one solo. Wyatt Harrison had 10 kills, two assists and eight digs.

MIVA vs. EIVA: Ball State not only won at Penn State, but swept the Nittany Lions 30-28, 25-19, 25-20 to leave both teams at 4-3. Ball State, which hit .273 and had four aces and 13 errors, got 11 kills from Kaleb Jenness and 10 from Matt Szews, who had two aces, two digs and four blocks, one solo. Brett Wildman had 10 kills for Penn State, which had won four matches in a row … 

Ohio State (7-1) won 25-16, 25-23, 27-25 at Saint Francis (2-5) behind 12 kills from Reese Devilbiss, who hit .688 after having one error in 16 attacks. Martin Lallemand had eight kills, two assists, four digs and a solo block, and Michael Wright had no kills, but three digs and six blocks, one solo. Michael Fisher had 15 kills to lead Saint Francis, which hit .148 and had two aces and 19 errors …

No. 12 George Mason (4-3) swept visiting Loyola (3-6) 25-15, 25-20, 25-19. Brad Creamer had 12 kills and hit .400 for Mason, which hit .329 as a team and had four aces and 10 errors. Creamer had an ace, three blocks and eight digs. Richie Hoff had nine kills, a block and six digs. Jack Reese had seven kills with no errors in nine swings and had an assist, two digs and six blocks, two solo. 

“Really happy with the way our boys executed the game tonight,” Mason coach Jay Hosack said.

“More importantly, we played phenomenal block and defense tonight and I thought our transition game stepped up a couple of notches. We were struggling with that early in the year and we worked on it really hard throughout the week and we are starting to see some fruits of our labor.”

Around the nation: Harvard (4-2) won an EIVA-opening match over Sacred Heart (3-1) as Campbell Schoenfield had 16 kills in the 28-26, 24-26, 25-23, 25-18 road victory. Schoenfeld added five digs and four blocks. Eric Li had 15 kills, 11 digs and a block. The Crimson hit .232 and had seven aces and 18 errors. SHU’s Rob Chatteron had 15 kills and hit .522 and added an ace, a dig and five blocks, two solo. Connor Mahony had 12 kills, 11 digs and two blocks. Their team hit .152 and had four aces and 14 errors …

Another EIVA team, Charleston (1-8), lost in four to Queens (4-4)

Three other MIVA teams were in action as Lindenwood (4-4) swept Tusculum (2-6) and McKendree (5-4) did the same to Urbana (0-9) and No. 6 Lewis (6-3) swept Barton of Conference Carolinas (3-1).

Ryan Coenen led Lewis with 12 kills and hit .632 after having no errors in 19 attacks. He had six of his team’s 13 aces and three digs. Lewis hit .532  and had 23 errors in the 25-18, 25-13, 25-22 victory. Barton hit .180 and had four aces and 11 errors …

There were three Conference Carolinas league matches as Emmanuel (1-6, 1-3) broke through for the first time this year as the Lions beat Limestone (4-1, 1-1) in five, King (4-5, 2-0) swept Lees-McRae (0-5, 0-1) and North Greenville (4-2, 2-0) won at Erskine (2-5, 0-4) in four.

Emmanuel’s Don Thompson got his 33 kills in 74 swings as he hit .338 and had three aces, 13 digs and four blocks, two solo. Teammate Aleksa Lakic had 11 kills, two aces, eight digs and three blocks, one solo. Limestone’s Vicente Mardones had 21 kills, nine digs and a block, and Francisco Salinger Cenzual had 18 kills, hit .485, and had 13 digs … 

Diego Marcano had 11 kills and Sean Kohlhase 10 for King … Brandon Baker had 15 kills for North Greenville and hit had four aces, two digs and three blocks, two solo … 

Also, Belmont Abbey (2-6) was swept by Lincoln Memorial (5-3) as the Railsplitters hit .553, second best in program history. 

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