NCAA volleyball: Belmont wins, big numbers in the Valley, all the recaps, AVCA polls

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NCAA women's men's volleyball 3/2/2021-Akeela Jefferson-South Dakota State volleyball
Akeela Jefferson of South Dakota State hits against South Dakota/Dave Eggen photo

Monday was full of interesting results and big-time performances in NCAA Division I women’s volleyball.

In the Ohio Valley, where things are tight at the top, Belmont got its first victory and Murray State’s Jayla Holcombe had 26 kills in a win over UT Martin.

Brooklyn Cink and Amelia Flynn combined for 49 kills in Missouri State’s Missouri Valley Conference win over Evansville, whose Melanie Feliciano and Alondra Vazquez combined for 48 kills. Also in the Valley, Hayley Bush (no, not the one who plays for Purdue) had 30 kills in Drake’s loss to Valpo, which got 26 kills from Jillie Grant. 

Tuesday’s schedule is light, but if you want to watch a match, we’ve got the links in the VolleyballMag.com TV & Streaming Listings.

AVCA women — The top six teams stayed the same in the AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 Women’s Poll: Wisconsin (idle), Texas (which finally played this spring), Kentucky (idle), Nebraska (idle), Minnesota (idle), and Baylor (also back in action).

Washington, which beat Utah twice, moved up two spots to No. 7. Florida (idle) stayed at No. 8, and Utah dropped two spots to No. 9. Penn State (idle) stayed at No. 10. 

UCLA moved up three spots to No. 12. BYU dropped three spots to No. 15. Pepperdine, which split two matches with BYU and lost at Baylor, is in at No. 25 and Missouri dropped out.

Hawai’i, not playing this season, no longer received votes on two or more ballots.

Click here for the complete AVCA women’s poll.

AVCA men — Hawai’i moved up a spot to No. 1 in the AVCA Division I-II Men’s Coaches Poll, while BYU, which took a loss, dropped to No. 2. Pepperdine moved up three spots to third, UC Santa Barbara, which hasn’t played this season, dropped a spot to fourth, and Lewis fell two spots to No. 5. Grand Canyon, the team that beat BYU, moved up three spots to No. 6, and at No. 7 McKendree (8-0) is assumedly the highest it’s ever been.

Click here for the complete AVCA men’s poll.

BIG SKY — Northern Colorado (9-3) hit .316 and swept at Idaho State (4-8, 2-8). Taylor Muff led with 13 kills as she hit .323 and had an assist, five digs, and two blocks, one solo … Northern Arizona (8-2) swept visiting Southern Utah (4-7. 4-6) for its fourth win in a row. Taylor Jacobsen and Lyla Hollis had 13 kills apiece. Jacobsen hit .385 and had an assist, a block, and eight digs. Hollis had one error in 20 attacks to hit .600 and had an ace, two blocks, and eight digs. SUU’s Stacey Hone had 11 kills, an ace, and three blocks, one solo … Idaho (5-5, 4-4) hit .323 and won in four at Montana (2-10). Kennedy Warren led with 18 kills, hitting .429, and had an assist, nine digs, and eight blocks, one solo. Allison Munday had 15 kills with one error in 30 swings, an assist, four blocks, and three digs. Nicole Ball had 10 kills with no errors in 17 attacks, an assist, and six blocks, one solo, and Bea Whitling had four kills and nine blocks, one solo.  Amethyst Harper led Montana with 13 kills, an assist, a block, and 1 dig.

CONFERENCE USA — Rice (9-3, 8-0) hit .376 and stayed unbeaten in league play with a sweep UTSA (3-9, 1-5). Nicole Lennon led a balanced attack with 11 kills as she hit .348 and had an assist, two aces, nine digs, and six blocks, two solo … 

Paige Briggs had 21 kills and 17 digs as Western Kentucky improved to 11-0, the best start in program history, 6-0 in the conference, with a four-set win at Marshall (5-3, 3-3). Lauren Matthews had 13 kills, three digs and two blocks, one solo. Marshall’s Macy McElhaney had 11 kills, three blocks, and two digs … 

Old Dominion (6-4. 4-2) beat visiting Florida Atlantic (1-6 1-4). Hailey Duncan had 12 kills and five blocks, one solo. Ashley Peroe had 11 kills, an ace, a block, and 13 digs, and Alessia Sgherza had 10 kills, three blocks, and 12 digs. Camryn Vogler and Scherine Dahoue had 12 kills each for FAU … Charlotte (7-4 5-3) hit .410 and beat visiting Middle Tennessee (1-6, 1-4) in four. Sydney Rowan led with 14 kills as she hit .406 and had two assists, an ace, eight digs, and two blocks, one solo. Amani McArthur had 11 kills with one error in 15 attacks and six blocks, two solo. Kayla Henley had 14 kills for MTSU as she hit .500 and had an assist, four digs, and four blocks, two solo … And UTEP (5-4, 4-2) won in five at North Texas (5-7, 2-4) as six players had nine or more kills. Cheyenne Jones led with 17 as she hit .364. Paulina Perez Rosas had 16, hit .324, and had two aces, 10 digs, and two blocks, one solo. Rhett Robinson led UNT with 24 kills, three blocks, and five digs.

HORIZON — UIC (8-0) stayed a game back in the loss column behind idle Wright State with a four-set win over visiting Oakland (5-4). Paola Santiago had 19 kills, an assist, a block, and 19 digs, and Martina Delucchi had 15 kills, an assist, two blocks, and nine digs. Oakland’s Jamie Walling had 18 kills as she hit .44 and had three blocks and three digs. Lindsay Wightman had 27 digs and two assists … Northern Kentucky (4-3, 3-3) swept at Youngstown State (2-4). Anna Brinkmann led with nine kills, an ace, nine digs, and a block … Purdue Fort Wayne (8-3) won in four at Green Bay (3-8) as Katie Crowe and Madelyn Wurster had 13 kills apiece. Wurster hit .407 and had four blocks, one solo, and Crow had 16 digs, two aces, and a block. Green Bay’s Alexandra Zakutney had 20 kills, two aces, and 13 digs … Cleveland State (6-5) swept visiting Robert Morris (0-9). Peyton Bloomer had 13 kills, hit .393, and had a dig and a block. Emily DeGeorge added 12 with no errors in 31 attacks and she had an assist, two aces, 14 digs, and a block.

MISSOURI VALLEY — Brooklyn Cink had 25 kills and Amelia Flynn 24 as first-place Missouri State (11-2, 7-1) beat visiting Evansville (3-9, 2-8) in five. Cink’s total was a career high as she had six errors in 66 attacks to hit .288 and added an ace, a block, and 12 digs. Flynn hit .291 and had an ace and 21 digs. Melanie Feliciano had 25 kills for Evansville, hitting .368, and she had 12 digs. Vazquez had 23 kills, three assists, two aces, and 10 digs. Rachel Basinski had 31 digs and six assists … 

Hayley Bush had 30 kills for Drake (6-5, 4-4), but the Bulldogs lost in five to visiting Valparaiso (6-6, 5-5). Valpo’s Jillie Grant had 26 kills, four assists, and 21 digs. Haley Hart had 16 kills, three digs, and three blocks, two solo. Peyton McCarthy had 14 kills, hit .333, and had an ace, six digs, and three blocks, one solo. Victoria Buhlman had five kills, 57 assists, an ace, a block, and 26 digs. Bella Ravotto had 38 digs and nine assists. Drake’s Bush hit .303 after having seven errors in 76 attacks. She had six digs and two blocks, one solo. Emily Plock had 10 kills, an ace, 22 digs, and five blocks, two solo. Jada Willis had 10 kills, two assists, 20 digs, and four blocks, one solo. And Kylee Macke had 33 digs, two assists, and three aces … 

Bradley (7-3) won its sixth in a row, beating visiting Southern Illinois (2-10, 1-9) in four. Hannah Thompson led with 17 kills, four assists, an ace, and 11 digs. Karagan Coggin and Raeann Bergman had 12 kills each. SIU’s Tatum Tornatta had 13 kills and hit .323 and Taylor Morgan had 11 kills and hit .450 and she had 10 digs … UNI (6-7, 6-4) beat visiting Indiana State (4-7, 4-6) in four. Emily Holterhaus led with 17 kills, hitting .318, and she had two assists, an ace, two solo blocks, and 12 digs. Carly Spies had 10 kills and hit .381 and had three blocks, one solo, and Kaylissa Arndorfer had 10 kills, two assists, an ace, four blocks, and six digs … Illinois State at Loyola was postponed.

OHIO VALLEY — Jacksonville State and Morehead State won again to stay atop the standings at 8-0. 

Lena Kindermann, a junior from Germany, had 20 kills, hit .471, and had an assist, a block, and two digs as Jacksonville State beat visiting Tennessee Tech (4-4) in four. Kylie Milton had 15 kills, hit .400, and had nine digs. Madeline Furtado had 12 kills for Tennessee Tech … 

Morehead State hit .382 and swept visiting Tennesse State (0-8). Olivia Lohmeier led with 15 kills as she hit .464 after having two errors in 28 swings to go with three aces, two blocks, and a dig …  

Taylor Floyd went off for Belmont (1-8, 1-7) with 24 kills as the Bruins got their first spring victory, winning in five at Eastern Kentucky (2-6). Floyd had just one error in 37 attacks to hit .622 and had four blocks and five digs. Halee Van Poppel had 18 kills, two assists, threee aces, a block, and 16 digs, and Rachel McBride had 30 digs and eight assists. Molly Michalak had 18 kills and 17 digs for EKU. Jovana Bulatovic had 15 kills, an assist, three digs, and two blocks, one solo … 

Freshman Jayla Holcombe had a career-high 26 kills and hit .444 as Murray State (4-4) swept visiting UT Martin (5-3). Holcombe added an ace, five digs, and three blocks, two solo. Callie Anderton had a kill, 48 assists, an ace, two blocks, and six digs, and Becca Fernandez had 23 digs and an ace …  

Southeast Missouri (6-2) hit .337 and swept visiting SIUE (4-4) . Laney Malloy had 13 kills, three assists, an ace, a block, and 10 digs … Austin Peay (5-2) hit .409 and won in four at Eastern Illinois (0-7) as five players had 11 or more kills, 16 by Taylor McInerney, who hit .370 and had an assist, a block, and a dig. Laurel Bailey had 17 kills for EIU.

SWAC — Prairie View (7-2. 6-1) won in four at Houston rival Texas Southern (0-3) as Victoria Pearson had 14 kills with one error in 23 attacks, an assist, eight of her team’s 12 aces, two digs, and four blocks, two solo … Grambling (3-3, 2-2) swept visiting Southern (2-4) as Semira Fields had 11 kills, a solo block, and eight digs, and Gillian Jones had 10 kills with one error in 32 attack, a block, and two digs.

SOCON — Mercer (8-5, 8-2) won in four at Chattanooga (5-7, 3-7) to pull into a tie, albeit one game back in the loss column, for first with idle Samford (7-1). Mercer’s Jaida Howell had 12 kills and five blocks, one solo … 

Wofford (7-2) kept pace with a four-set win over visiting The Citadel (3-10, 2-8) despite 20 kills by The Citadel’s Sharlissa de Jesus, who had an ace, 13 digs, and four blocks, two solo. Wofford’s Meghan Yaffa had 12 kills, two assists, a solo block, and 14 digs, and Sarah Barham had 12 kills, hit .370, and had a dig and six blocks, four solo … UNCG (2-8) won in four at Furman (3-5) and check out this scoreline: 27-25, 25-20, 16-25, 32-30. The Spartans faced four set points in the fourth before finally winning. Five UNCG players had eight or more kills, 12 each by Maria Esch and Hannah Knier, who hit .429 and had six blocks, one solo. Jenna Wiggs had 25 digs, three assists, and a ace … Merry Gebel had 23 kills as Western Carolina (5-6, 5-4) beat visiting ETSU (4-4) in four. Gebel hit .311 and had an ace, 14 digs, and two blocks, one solo. Julia Gardon had 14 kills, two assists, an ace, a block, and 18 digs. Four ETSU players had 10 or more kills, 14 by Sara Esposito, who had two aces, three blocks, and eight digs. 

SUMMIT — South Dakota (8-4, 7-1) swept at South Dakota State (2-9, 2-8) as Elizabeth Juhnke got back in the lineup after a match off and led with 12 kills. She had one error in 29 attacks, an assist, two blocks, and 11 digs … Kansas City (9-1) stayed top the standings with a sweep at North Dakota (2-8. 2-6) as Melanie Brecka had 16 kills, hit .375, and had two aces and 11 digs … Omaha (8-7, 7-3) swept at Western Illinois (0-11) as Sadie Limback had 13 kills and three blocks … And Denver (7-1) won in four at Oral Roberts (2-8, 2-6) behind 14 kills by Lydia Bartalo, who had an assist, two aces, and five digs. 

WAC — Tarleton (8-7, 4-5) swept at Chicago State (0-3) as Lauren Kersey had 17 kills with two errors in 30 attacks, a block, and nine digs … UTRGV (1-8, 1-6) got its first win of the spring, a sweep of visiting California Baptist (1-8, 1-6) . Victoire Nama had 13 kills, hit .323, and had two assists, an ace, two blocks, and 10 digs. Mackenzie Coates had six kills, hit .556, and had 34 assists, an ace, three blocks, and 11 digs. Cali Hoye had 13 kills and 12 digs for California Baptist … Dixie State (6-6, 5-6) beat visiting Utah Valley (7-3, 7-2) in five as six players had seven or more kills, led by Chayse Daugherty, who had 14. Megan Treanor had 10 kills, 23 assists, a block, and 16 digs. Kazna Tanuvasa had 17 kills for UVU and an assist, two blocks, and nine digs. Seren Jardine had 37 digs and six assists … Seattle at NM State was postponed.

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