Jackson St wins SWAC by forfeit; Pac12 wins for Utah, Washington

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NCAA volleyball 3/29/2021-Cole Paxson-USC men's volleyball
USC libero Cole Paxson jump sets in front of the three meter line/Ed Chan, VBshot4s.com

Utah made a statement Sunday with a sweep of Washington State, and Stanford pushed Pac-12 leader Washington to five sets but couldn’t quite pull off the upset. 

Stanford’s Caitie Baird and Morehead State’s Olivia Lohmeier had 25 kills, but Jacksonville State’s Lena Kindermann one-upped them with 26 kills.

Jackson State claimed the SWAC crown after Arkansas Pine Bluff was forced to forfeit Sunday’s conference championship match due to COVID protocols, and Wright State and UIC advanced to the final of the Horizon League tournament.

On the men’s side, USC’s Brandon Browning tied a program record with his .917 attack percentage against Stanford

There were plenty of other impressive individual performances and big team outcomes, and the recaps follow but first a look at Monday’s schedule. 

Wright State and UIC will play each other in the Horizon League championship after both teams won in Sunday’s conference semifinals. In the SWAC, Jackson State claimed the conference title after the championship match versus Arkansas Pine Bluff was canceled due to COVID-19 protocols within the UAPB program.

There are just 12 women’s matches Monday. Seven of the 12 are Ohio Valley Conference matches, all rematches of Sunday action with the exception of Austin Peay at UT Martin, for which both matches in the series will be played Monday. Jacksonville State looks to stay undefeated as it takes on conference No. 2 Morehead State for the second day in a row; Eastern Kentucky has Tennessee State; Eastern Illinois plays at Southern Illinois; Southeastern Missouri State hosts Murray State; and Belmont has Tennessee Tech.

The four SoCon matches for Monday, all the second half of double headers which started Sunday, include Chattanooga at ETSU, Western Carolina at UNC Greensboro, Mercer at Furman, and The Citadel at Samford.

West Virginia hosts the CAA’s Delaware, the Mountaineers second-to-last regular season match of the spring season since their Tuesday match versus Towson got canceled. No other Power Five teams play Monday.

NCAA volleyball 3/29/2021-Selina Xu-Stanford volleyball
Stanford’s Selina Xu sets as Washington’s Marin Grote blocks/Stephen Burns photo

PAC-12 — Stanford lost to Washington for the second time on the weekend, but the Cardinal pushed the league-leading Huskies to five sets and extra points (22-25, 25-12, 33-31, 18-25, 16-14) with 25 kills from Caitie Baird, who added two aces, seven blocks (one solo), and 14 digs. Meghan McClure had just nine kills and nine errors to hit .000 but the senior led all Stanford players with 22 digs. Claire Hoffman led the Huskies with a career-high 22 kills, tacking on an ace, an assist, two blocks, and 17 digs, while Lauren Sanders collected 10 blocks, surpassing 500 on her career. Washington’s 98 team digs is a season high … 

Utah swept Washington State on its senior day in Salt Lake City 25-18, 27-25, 25-22, and the Ute seniors put on a good show in their final home match. Dani Drews led the team with 16 kills, while Kenzie Koerber added 15, hitting .462 and tying the team high with nine digs … 

It was also senior night in Westwood where UCLA got a four-set victory over Oregon State. Senior Mac May led the team with 17 kills, while Zoe Fleck recorded 20 digs and a new career-high four aces. Freshman setter Audrey Pak got her first double-double and a new person best with 10 digs. Emily Ryan made zero errors in nine swings, converting on six for a .667 hitting percentage. The team’s nine aces ties its season high. Anastasija Svetnik led OSU with 12 kills, hitting .364, and adding an assist, six blocks (two solo), and a dig … 

After going to five with Arizona State Friday, Colorado got past the Sun Devils in three Sunday, but every set was decided by just two points with extra points needed in two of the three sets. Leah Clayton led CU with nine kills and 12 digs, while ASU’s Megan Beedie set a team high on the other side of the net with eight kills, hitting .429, and adding four blocks, one solo … 

Oregon got its second sweep of the weekend, downing Cal 25-12, 25-19, 25-19. Brooke Nuneviller led the Ducks with 13 kills, adding 12 digs. Bella Bergmark, Makana Meyer, and Katarina Pantovic each recorded seven kills for the Bears, with Bergmark making exactly zero errors on 11 swings to hit .636. 

ACC — Duke lost its second five-set match of the weekend, falling to Syracuse 19-25, 25-18, 25-17, 15-25, 15-12. Syracuse’s Abby Casiano led the match with 14 kills, hitting .414 and adding seven digs. Ella Saada scored a double-double with 10 digs and 10 kills, while libero Lauren Hogan set the match high of 28 digs. Lily Cooper and Moorea Wood each had 10 kills for Duke … 

All three other ACC matches Sunday were decided in straight sets, including Louisville versus NC State. The league No. 1 Cardinals benefitted from 11 kills from Anna Stevenson, who hit .529 and added six blocks, two solo, as they beat the Wolfpack 26-24, 25-22, 25-13. Jade Parchment led the offense on the opposite side of the net with 12 kills … 

In Pitt’s sweep of North Carolina, the Panthers’ 10th victory in a row, Kayla Lund had 10 kills, three blocks, and eight digs. Four Pitt aces and seven team blocks helped hold UNC to a .012 hitting percentage and keep the Tar Heels from scoring more than 15 points in a set … 

Boston College went 2-0 on the weekend, sweeping Virginia Tech Sunday  25-23, 25-20, 25-17. Clare Naughton led with 12 kills, hitting .375, and adding two assists, a block, and 13 digs. BC setters Grace Penn and Sophia Lambros each finished the match with 19 assists, and Lambros added four kills.

HORIZON — Conference tournament No. 1 seed Wright State swept Purdue Fort Wayne 25-14, 25-19, 25-19. With eight team blocks and 74 digs, WSU held Fort Wayne to a .054 hitting percentage. Teddie Sauer led the Raiders with 11 kills and just two errors on 22 swings (.409), adding an assist, an ace, a block, and two digs. Junior libero Jenna Story had a great night, finishing the match with 24 digs, seven assists, and three aces …

UIC went down 0-2 and was trailing Northern Kentucky 18-8 in the fourth set but managed to win the match in five 19-25, 20-25, 25-17, 25-23, 15-9. NKU redshirt sophomore opposite Abby Kanakry led all players with 20 kills, hitting .486, while her teammate Reilly Briggs had 17 kills, two blocks, and three digs. Setter Miranda Wucherer was just two kills away from a triple-double with eight kills, 29 assists, and 11 digs, adding two blocks and two aces. On the winning side, UIC’s 5-9 freshman outside hitter Martina Delucchi led with 18 kills and 18 digs. Paola Santiago also scored a double-double with 17 kills and 20 digs. 

MAAC — Six of seven MAAC matches Sunday went to five sets. Manhattan earned the series sweep of Iona with a pair of five-set victories over Iona. With the wins, the Jaspers finish the regular season tied with Niagara and Rider for third place in the standings. Erin Hoener led Manhattan in both outings, leading all players with 24 kills with just two errors to hit .595 in the first match and following it up with 11 kills in the second … 

Fairfield and Quinnipiac’s two matches also both went to five, but with each team winning one and Fairfield suffering its first loss of the season. One of two wins was enough for Fairfield to lock in the MAAC regular season championship, however, its 19th in 25 seasons. Fairfield’s Emily Schillinger set a new career-high with 18 kills in the first match, while Simone Tyson collected her first double-double with a pair of career highs in 12 kills and 18 digs. Libero Georgia Via had 30 digs. On the Quinnipiac side, Morgan Sherwin set a trio of new season highs with 20 kills, 18 digs, and five blocks. In the second match, sophomore Morgan Doll got her first start as a six-rotation outside and tallied 21 kills and 18 digs, while Luci Albertson set a career-high with 15 kills, hitting .609. Quinnipiac setter Chloe Ka’ahanui also celebrated a new career-high with 44 assists, adding 13 digs … 

Niagara won the first match against Canisius in straight sets, but the visitors won the second meeting in five sets. Jaycie Roberts led Niagara in both matches with 14 kills and 17 digs in the first and 21 kills and 27 digs in the second. Libero Amanda Darling set a new career high with 26 digs in the second match. Hannah Nelson led Canisius in the first outing with 15 kills and 18 digs, scoring 13 kills and 28 digs in the second, but it was Rachel Kinney who led the team with 17 kills in the second. 

MVC — Illinois State won the MVC regular-season crown with a sweep of SIU. The Redbirds finish the regular season with a 11-3 conference record, 13-5 overall. Sarah Kushner led the ISU effort with 14 kills, hitting .379, and adding two aces, a block, and eight digs. Setter Stef Jankiewicz finished the match with 37 assists, two kills, two aces, and eight digs, quarterbacking the team to a .398 attack percentage …

Drake’s 3-1 victory over Loyola Chicago earned it the No. 2 seed in the conference tournament. The Bulldogs ended their regular season on an eight-match win streak. Emily Plock had 22 kills, two aces, and three blocks. Kacie Roberts led all players with eight blocks. LUC’s Sarah Murczek led her team with 14 kills, adding 14 digs and two aces … 

UNI evened up the series with Bradley, claiming victory in Sunday’s matchup 25-19, 15-25, 25-22, 25-15. Emily Holterhaus led the Panthers with 12 kills, adding 19 digs. Only libero Baylee Peterson contributed more defensively, finishing the match with 23 digs. Doga Topcicek starred for Bradley, scoring 13 kills and 21 digs with two aces.

AROUND THE NATION — College of Charleston secured its spot in the CAA postseason with a win in four over Elon. In their final home match in Charleston, seniors Hazel Brown and Logan Manusky stood out with 15 kills and 22 digs, respectively. Brown added 11 digs for the first double-double of her career as a Cougar (Brown transferred from Rhode Island in 2020) and had four blocks. Sophomore Lexi Wierzbicki also had 15 kills, equaling her season high. Elon’s Leah Daniel led the match with 20 kills, adding 10 digs, while libero Jordan Gower set the match high with 23 digs … 

Delaware State concluded the regular season with a five-set comeback against Howard. DSU’s 11-4 record gives the team a win percentage of .733, the program’s best since 1987. Valeria Otero led the attack with 13 kills, adding an ace, a block, and six digs. Setter Jelena Dukic had 30 assists and two kills in two attempts for a 1.000 attack percentage … 

Jacksonville State clinched at least a share of the Ohio Valley Conference regular season championship with a five-set win over Morehead State. Monday’s rematch between the two teams will determine the regular season champ and the host of the conference tournament. Lena Kindermann scored a team-high 26 kills, a new career high for the junior. Freshman Courtney Glotzbach also set a new personal best with 17 kills. Morehead State’s Olivia Lohmeier had 25 kills and 11 digs … 

With 20 kills from Helena Elbaek, American handed Navy its first loss of the season. The senior took a whopping 58 swings in the match, adding 10 digs and two blocks … 

The Citadel defeated Samford in five sets. Mellanie King and Sharlissa de Jesus had 19 kills each, with 12 digs for King and 16 for de Jesus, who also had two aces and three blocks. Setter Amie Green finished the match with 39 assists and 11 digs, with six kills and two blocks. The Citadel has now won four in a row.

NCAA volleyball 3/29/2021-Kevin Lamp-Stanford men's volleyball
Stanford’s Kevin Lamp hits a pipe set/Ed Chan, VBshots.com

MEN — All three men’s matches were decided in straight sets with no upsets. Pepperdine blanked Grand Canyon 29-27, 26-24, 25-18, hitting a season-high .416 as a team, for which plenty of credit goes to setter Bryce Dvorak. The freshman collected 38 assists and three blocks in the match. Senior Spencer Wickens led with 14 kills, hitting .500 and adding eight digs. His classmate Noah Dyer finished with 7 kills and no errors in 10 swings to hit .700. GCU’s Hugo Fischer tied the match high with 14 kills … 

USC’s Brandon Browning tied a school record with his .917 hitting percentage in the Trojans’ sweep of Stanford. The 6-4 junior had 11 kills and no errors in 12 swings. Kupono Browne led Stanford with 10 kills, hitting .529, and adding three digs … 

In McKendree’s 3-0 decision over Purdue Fort Wayne, Patrick Ross had 16 kills and just one error to hit .600, adding three aces, seven blocks, and five digs. Lucas Galifos had 11 blocks for a match- and season-high. Pelegrin Vargas led Fort Wayne with 13 kills, tacking on an ace, three blocks, and seven digs. 

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NCAA volleyball 3/29/2021-Malia Tufuga-Stanford volleyball
Stanford’s Malia Tufuga turns for the ball/Stephen Burns photo

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