NCAA volleyball: Georgia upsets UK, Cal Poly sweeps Hawai’i, Penn St. escapes Maryland

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NCAA volleyball 10/12/2019-Montanna Gubrud-Oregon State volleyball-Beaver volleyball
Oregon State's Montanna Gubrud makes a save/Stephen Burns photo

The race for the SEC title just got a lot more interesting on Friday night as Georgia went to Kentucky and handed the Wildcats a massive upset in five and ended No. 12 Kentucky’s conference win streak that dated back to 2017.

Another ranked team went down as No. 19 Hawai’i lost to Cal Poly in straight sets for the first time in program history.

Maryland almost got its first win ever over No. 8 Penn State. Instead, the Terps had to settle for their first two set wins inside Rec Hall, and the Nittany Lions escaped in five sets.

Third-ranked Pitt also got pushed, but only in the first set, by Syracuse before emerging with the sweep, the Panthers’ fourth win in a row.

And Michigan’s four-set victory over Iowa stretches the Wolverines Big Ten record to five wins in a row, a program-best start to the conference season.

More on those matches and more results from around the nation to come, but first a look at Saturday’s schedule.

Three of the power-five conferences are off on Saturday, but there are plenty of good matches to follow, starting with No. 4 Texas (10-2, 4-0) hosting Oklahoma (11-4, 3-1). The Sooners enter the match as major underdogs, especially with Texas slowly reintegrating Brionne Butler into the lineup, but with just one loss in conference, they’re currently the third-ranked team in the Big 12 standings.

Elsewhere in the Big 12, Texas Christian (6-8, 1-3) gets its shot to topple the nation’s top team as it hosts Baylor (14-0, 4-0). Texas Tech (12-6, 2-2) plays Iowa State (11-5, 2-2), and West Virginia (8-8, 0-4) has Kansas State (6-10, 1-3).

In the Big Ten, Indiana (12-6, 1-4) takes on No. 17 Illinois (8-6, 3-2), No. 20 Purdue (10-4, 2-3) goes to Northwestern (9-8, 0-5), Ohio State (9-8, 2-3) has No. 8 Penn State (11-3, 4-1), and Maryland (9-8, 1-4) plays Rutgers (6-10, 0-5).

No. 9 BYU (15-2, 3-0) has Santa Clara (12-6, 2-3) on deck. The Cougars are riding a nine match win streak and have won three in a row by sweeps.

The biggest Big East match of the season, repetition intended, will take place Saturday in Milwaukee as No. 10 Marquette (15-2, 5-0) hosts No. 13 Creighton (12-3, 5-0) in a battle of conference unbeatens.

No. 15 Colorado State (15-1, 5-0) welcomes San Diego State (9-7, 2-3) to Fort Collins and Fresno State (3-2, 10-7) heads to Wyoming (9-7, 4-1), and Boise State (12-4, 4-1) has a road match versus UNLV (7-9, 3-2) in the three best Mountain West matches of the night.

After losing to Cal Poly Friday, Hawaii (13-3, 3-2) has to rebound quickly as the Wahine take on conference-unbeaten UCSB (15-1, 5-0) in Santa Barbara.

Dayton (11-6, 4-0), fresh off a sweep of George Mason Friday, goes to D.C. to play the other George: George Washington (9-8, 3-1).

Northern Colorado (11-6, 5-0) taking on Idaho (8-9, 4-1) headlines the slate of matches in the Big Sky, which also includes Sacramento State (8-10, 3-2) versus Weber State (11-5, 2-3), Montana (2-14, 1-4) versus Northern Arizona (9-8, 2-3), Montana State (8-6, 4-1) versus Southern Utah (10-7, 3-2), and Portland State (7-9, 3-2) versus Idaho State (4-13, 1-4).

Canisius (8-9, 5-0) brings a five-match win streak into Saturday’s meeting with Marist (6-10, 4-2), a match which could have major implications on MAAC standings down the road.

The two undefeated teams in the NEC, Robert Morris (15-3, 5-0) and LIU (5-11, 4-0) play in Moon Township.

Wofford (10-9, 3-2) will look to rebound from a five-set loss to ETSU on Friday night as it travels to Cullowhee North Carolina to play Western Carolina (10-7, 4-0)

The Sun Belt’s star squad Coastal Carolina (14-2, 4-0) plays Arkansas State (11-5, 2-2). Texas State (12-7, 4-1), leader of the West Division, has Georgia Southern (6-9, 1-3) on deck.

There are four matches in the WAC, the biggest of which is Grand Canyon (14-3, 4-1) versus New Mexico State (14-3, 5-0).

Click here for the complete NCAA.com scoreboard and to watch any match that is being broadcast, go to the VolleyballMag.com daily TV and streaming listings.

Georgia beats Kentucky: No. 12 Kentucky (11-5, 4-1) had 10 more total points than Georgia (12-4, 4-1) across five sets, but the Bulldogs were better when it mattered. In the fifth set, Georgia made just two hitting errors for a .429 team average, winning the match 25-23, 23-25, 20-25, 15-25, 15-12.

Kentucky’s Leah Edmond led with 22 kills and Allie Stumler had 16. On the Georgia side, freshman Kacie Evans topped the chart with 15. Bulldog setter Meghan Donovan had six kills to go with her season-high 54 assists, and Sage Naves led with seven blocks.

Both teams liberos, Kendall Glover for Georgia and Gabby Curry for Kentucky (who happens to be from Buford, Georgia), surpassed the 1,000 career digs mark in the match.

Sellout crowd buoys Cal Poly to an upset: The Mott Athletics Center in San Luis Obispo was buzzing Friday night as a sellout crowd watched the Mustangs (13-5, 6-0) sweep Hawai’i (13-3, 3-2) for the first time in program history (25-22, 26-24, 25-15).

Junior outside Maia Dvoracek had 16 kills, hitting .323, and middle Meredith Phillips added four blocks to her eight kills (.429).

Setter Avalon DeNecochea set the Mustangs to a .311 team hitting percentage with 33 assists.

Penn State escapes upset: Penn State (11-3, 4-1) and Maryland’s match in State College showcased both the Nittany Lions’ inconsistencies and vulnerabilities, while also giving a glimpse of Maryland’s capabilities. But in the end all that will be remembered by most is the final result, another win for Penn State (18-25, 25-20, 25-19, 14-25, 15-6), which brings the head-to-head series to 11-0.

Both teams’ top outsides recorded double-doubles with Penn State’s Jonni Parker finishing the match with 13 kills and 11 digs, and Maryland’s Erika Pritchard scoring a match-high 19 kills and scooping 16 digs.

With 21 digs, Penn State libero Kendall White moved into the No. 2 spot on the Nittany Lions’ career digs list, totaling 1,705.

Pitt continues ACC streak: With the sweep of Syracuse (4-8, 1-4), Pitt (16-1, 5-0) has now won 15 of 16 sets in 2019 ACC play. After Syracuse hung in there for most of the first set, the Panthers finished the match dominantly (26-24, 25-15, 25-17) with a very balanced offense that didn’t see a single player on the Pitt side make it to double-digit kills. Syracuse’s Polina Shemanova led the match with 15 kills but made nine errors to hit just .146.

A program-best start for Michigan: The Wolverines (12-3, 5-0) dropped out of the top-25 poll in the third week of September, but with a 27-25, 25-17, 19-25, 25-23 victory over Iowa (7-9, 1-4), their 5-0 Big Ten season start marks a program-best performance.

Sydney Wetterstrom posted a double-double with 16 kills and 11 digs. Cori Crocker had 11 kills with just one error to hit a new personal-best .556. Iowa got 23 digs from libero Halle Johnston.

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Washington middle hitter Lauren Sanders faces the Oregon State double block/Stephen Burns photo

Power-five results: Ohio State (9-8, 2-3) stopped a three-match skid with a sweep of Rutgers 6-10, 0-5) 25-14, 25-23, 25-18. OSU’s Jenaisya Moore was the only play to hit double figures in the kills column as she logged 10 …

Michigan State (11-4, 2-3) took the first set off Nebraska but the Huskers won in four, limiting MSU to a season-low hitting percentage of .038. Nebraska had 14 blocks, led by Callie Schwarzenbach with seven. Jazz Sweet led the offense with 16 kills …

Despite playing what was scheduled as a home match at Stanford due to Northern California power shutoffs, Cal (14-1, 4-1) swept Arizona State (10-6, 2-3) 25-20, 25-20, 25-19. Sophomore Lauren Forte collected a career-high 14 kills, hitting .591 …

Right after the Cal match, Stanford (10-3, 4-1) took the floor at Maples and beat Arizona (11-6, 1-4) in straight sets 25-16, 25-14, 25-16. The Cardinal hit .405, their second-best performance as a team so far this season. Audriana Fitzmorris matched her season high with a .615 hitting percentage on a team-high nine kills. Madeleine Gates had six kills with zero errors, and Morgan Hentz scooped 20 digs. Kathryn Plummer, who had sat out the past few matches due to an undisclosed injury, did not play.

Arizona’s Devyn Cross, who was previously the most efficient hitter in the country, was held to a .111 hitting percentage …

No. 24 Washington State (14-3, 3-2) had 14 blocks in its four-set defeat of Oregon (5-9,1-3) (25-17, 22-25, 25-22, 25-13), holding the Ducks to a .133 hitting efficiency. Willow Johnson (16), Brooke Nuneviller (15), and Ronika Stone (11) all contributed double-digit kills for Oregon, and Nuneviller added 23 digs. WSU’s top hitter Jocelyn Urias had just one error to go with her team-high 14 kills, hitting .464 …

Khalia Lanier had 24 points for USC (9-6, 3-2) as the Trojans (9-6, 3-2) beat Colorado (8-7, 0-5) in four (26-24, 25-20, 23-25, 25-23). With 1,643 kills, Lanier now ranks sixth all-time in the USC career kills list. Middle Jasmine Gross posted eight blocks and hit .455 with 11 kills …

UCLA dropped to 3-2 in the Pac-12 (8-6 overall) with a straight set loss (25-17, 25-16, 28-26) to Utah (12-4, 4-1). The Utes had 10 blocks in the contest, led by Phoebe Grace with eight block assists and a solo. Dani Drews of Utah led all players with 17 kills and setter Saige Ka’aha’aina-Torres racked up 47 assists …

Washington (12-3, 3-2) blanked Oregon State (8-8, 2-3) 25-19, 25-16, 25-16, hitting .429 as a team and out-serving OSU seven to two and out-blocking them 10 to five. Kara Bajema led the attacking contingent with 12 kills …

The SEC slate saw Florida (12-3, 3-1) and Texas A&M (11-4, 3-2) score sweeps over Arkansas (6-10, 0-4) and South Carolina (10-7, 2-3), respectively. Florida setter Marlie Monserez distributed 31 assists in Florida’s 26-24, 25-16, 25-18 win, and Rachael Kramer hit a steaming .750 with seven kills.

South Carolina rallied back in the third set to push the score well past the 25-point mark, but A&M eventually ended it in three (25-15, 25-17, 33-31).

“As you can see, we’re going up against great opponents,” A&M coach Bird Kuhn said. “South Carolina is a fantastic team, so they’re not just going to hand the game over in the third set. They played better and we lost a bit of our ball control in the third.”

A&M’s Hollann Hans hit double-digit kills for the 10th match in a row, finishing with a match-high 18, hitting .486 …

After losing the first and second sets 24-26, LSU (9-6, 3-2) bounced back to defeat Tennessee (8-7, 2-3) in five (24-26, 24-26, 25-22, 25-20, 15-11). LSU outside Taylor Bannister set a new season-high with 24 kills, adding 10 digs. Freshman setter Karli Rose dished out a career-high 55 assists, logging a double-double with 11 digs. Middle Allee Morris, also a freshman, had her own personal best of nine blocks.

Around the nation: The Big East’s two ranked teams got sweeps on Friday night, with No. 13 Creighton (12-3, 5-0) blanking DePaul (9-8, 1-4) (25-18, 25-21, 25-15) and No. 10 Marquette (15-2, 5-0) taking care of business versus Providence (5-13, 0-5) (25-14,25-20,25-18). Creighton and Marquette remain tied for first in the conference standings.

Also in the Big East, Butler (6-11, 3-2) beat St. John’s (11-8, 3-3) in four and Xavier (6-9, 3-2) swept Seton Hall (7-13, 2-4).

Four Pepperdine (9-8, 5-1) players had double-digit kills in a four-set WCC win (25-23, 26-28, 25-22, 25-23) over LMU (10-8, 3-3), led by Rachel Ahrens with 15, hitting .500 …

Duquesne’s (8-10, 2-3) Morgan Kelly and LaSalle’s (7-9, 2-3) Samantha Graver tied for the match high with 19 kills apiece in Duquesne’s come-from-behind five-set win. LaSalle setter Kathryn Wood had 52 assists …

Campbell (9-8, 3-1) overcame a 12-4 blocking disadvantage to defeat USC Upstate (5-11, 1-3) in five sets 8-25, 25-22, 25-20, 24-26, 15-10. Lailah Green led the winning team with 22 kills …

Two players had 20 kills for Northeastern in the Huskies five-set win over UNC Wilmington. Erica Staunton and Evelyn Gonzalez also both hit above .350 with just nine errors between them on a combined 86 attempts …

In the Missouri Valley Conference, UNI (12-8, 6-0) maintained an undefeated conference record, beating Bradley (7-9, 3-2) in four sets (25-18, 22-25, 25-19, 25-18), despite three Bradley players getting 20 or more digs. Also in MVC action, Indiana State got its first conference victory of the season, beating Evansville 25-22, 23-25, 25-21, 25-21. ISU libero Melina Tedro set a single-game record for digs, leading all players with 44 digs.

The MVC also saw Illinois State sweep Drake, Loyola beat Southern Illinois in four, and Valpo dismiss Missouri State in three …

The Horizon League’s Milwaukee (18-1, 5-0) just keeps winning as the Panthers beat Northern Kentucky (10-8, 3-3) in four (25-22, 22-25, 25-21, 25-20). Kleja Cerniauskaite led Milwaukee with 15 kills …

Wofford (10-9, 3-2) libero Emily Durham had 30 digs in a five-set loss (25-27, 25-14, 25-18, 23-25, 17-15) to ETSU (14-3, 5-0). For the Bucs, Olivia Cunningham collected a match-high 22 kills, and Kaela Massey had eight block assists and a solo, while Sara Esposito added seven block assists …

With 15 kills, hitting .433, Jordan Thompson led Cincinnati (13-4, 5-0 to another American Athletic Conference win, this one a sweep of UConn (8-9, 2-3) 25-14, 25-14, 25-20.Led by setter Armania Heckenmueller with four, Cincinnati collected nine aces …

The other undefeated team in the AAC, Houston (11-9, 5-0), beat Wichita State (4-13, 1-4) in four. Four players had 10 or more digs for the Cougars …

It was a rematch of the 2018 America East championship match as Albany (7-9, 3-0) and Stony Brook (6-12, 1-2) faced off Friday. Albany won in five (22-25, 25-19, 22-25, 25-19, 20-18), with 19 kills from Akuabata Okenwa, which put her in the 1,000 career kills club, and 24 digs from libero Charlotte Macken …

Charleston Southern (10-8, 2-2) beat Radford (5-11, 1-3) in five (24-26, 25-22, 25-18, 23-25, 15-8) and each team had a player with more than 20 kills. For CSU, Brooke Monson led the way with 21, adding a season-best 22 digs, while Radford’s Stephanie Neast had 22 kills. CSU setter Emilee Karelse collected 50 assists …

FIU’s (9-6, 2-2) Fiorella Murillo smashed 29 kills in a five-set victory over Charlotte (11-9, 1-3) (25-19, 19-25, 25-21, 26-24, 15-10). Sidney Henderson also topped the 20-kill mark, finishing the match with 21. Setter Abbie Huges had 64 assists. On the other side of the net, Charlotte setter Annika Wetterstrom tallied 47 helpers …

It took five hard-fought sets, but MTSU (7-11, 1-3) got its first CUSA victory of the season, downing Marshall (12-6, 3-2) 26-24, 24-26, 25-20, 19-25, 15-9. Senior Dora Peonia tied her career-high with 23 kills. Taylor Hammill had 51 assists, enough to hit the 2,000 career assists mark. Libero Bri Tankesley set a personal season-high with 26 digs …

UIC (13-6, 2-3) ended Wright State’s (16-2, 5-1) 16-match win streak in dominant fashion, sweeping the Raiders 25-23, 25-23, 25-23. UIC had 12 blocks to Wright State’s six, with Michelle Glover leading the way with six ..

Lafayette (12-8, 1-3) secured its first conference win by beating Patriot League foe Holy Cross in five (18-25, 24-26, 25-21, 25-22, 15-11) …

South Dakota (17-1, 5-1) has now won 14 in a row as it got past North Dakota State in five (20-25, 25-13, 25-17, 15-25, 15-5). Anne Rasmussen collected five aces in the match, three of which came in the critical fifth set …

Finally, Denver had a match scheduled at North Dakota, but the Pioneers’ flight got cancelled due to inclement weather, and the match will be rescheduled.

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