Just one ranked team played Thursday when No. 20 Colorado State beat Air Force in the Mountain West.
On the same day in which Sacramento State was featured on this site, the Hornets sustained their first Big Sky defeat, losing in five — 16-14 in the fifth — at Northern Arizona.
The recaps follow, but first a look at Friday’s schedule when the top-two teams not only in the West Coast Conference but the VolleyballMag.com Mid-Major Poll square off.
The showdown looms large in the WCC, when No. 8 BYU plays host to No. 18 San Diego.
BYU is 21-1 overall, losing only to Baylor in Hawai’i in five, and is 10-0 in the WCC, which includes a four-set win at San Diego on September 30. The Cougars have won 13 in a row.
USD (16-4, 9-1) has won six in a row. In the NCAA RPI, BYU is 17th, while USD is No. 22.
Three’s also a big one in the Big West, when No. 23 Cal Poly (20-2, 10-0 Big West) plays host to Hawai’i (15-6, 9-1). In their first matchup, Cal Poly rallied from 0-2 to win in five in Honolulu on October 7, the first time the Mustangs beat Hawai’i since 2006.
In the Big Ten, there are four matches, headlined by No. 7 Nebraska (16-4, 9-1) at No. 10 Michigan State (15-4, 8-2). Nebraska won the first meeting in Lincoln in four on October 4. Also in the B1G, No. 17 Purdue goes to Ohio State, Iowa is at Michigan and Indiana is at Maryland.
The ACC has six matches and things are tight at the top.
Two teams are tied for the lead. NC State (14-7, 9-1) goes to Miami (12-4, 6-4) and Pittsburgh (16-5, 9-1) plays third-place Louisville (15-6, 9-2). Also, North Carolina goes to Florida State in a rare meeting when neither team is either in first or challenging for the lead, Duke is at Georgia Tech, Wake Forest plays at Clemson and Virginia Tech is at Syracuse.
Both SEC ranked teams play Friday.
Sixth-ranked and league-leader Kentucky goes to third-place LSU, while No. 4 Florida plays host to South Carolina. Also, Tennessee goes to Texas A&M and Alabama plays at Mississippi State.
In the Pac-12, the only matchup featuring two of the league’s six ranked teams has No. 19 USC at No. 14 Washington. Second-ranked Stanford, which holds a three-game lead in the loss column over second-place Utah, plays at winless Arizona State. No. 12 Utah goes to Oregon State, No. 13 UCLA plays at Washington State, No. 15 Oregon plays host to Colorado and Cal goes to Arizona.
The Big 12 is idle but other ranked teams are in action. No. 16 Creighton has a Big East match at Providence on Friday and then plays the Friars again on Saturday. No. 21 Wichita State goes to Central Florida in the American Athletic Conference, while No. 25 Northern Iowa goes to Illinois State in a Missouri Valley matchup.
Remember that VolleyballMag.com has all the TV and streaming listings every day for every match that is being shown.
Colorado State sweeps again: The Rams are 22-2, 12-0 in the Mountain West after beating Air Force for the 48th time in a row. Air Force (10-15, 3-8) hasn’t beaten CSU since 1995.
Colorado State, which won for the 12th time in a row, scored a MW sweep for the ninth time this season. Jasmine Hanna led with 12 kills and hit .365. Both Kirstie Hillyer, who hit .538 and five blocks — one solo — and Breana Runnels had eight kills each.
“You see a lot of people through their careers and get to their senior year and have transformational years. I think that is happening with Jasmine,” CSU coach Tom Hilbert said. “She is playing great, night in and night out. She is in great shape and she’s never been tired. This is what senior year should be like. She worked very hard in the off-season and its showing.”
Air Force got 11 kills from Denise Ssozi, who had seven digs.
NAU stuns Sacramento State in Big Sky: The Lumberjacks prevailed 27-29, 25-14, 25-21, 20-25, 16-14 behind a huge night for Kaylie Jorgenson. She had 26 kills in 85 swings and 20 digs. Abby Akin had 16 kills and hit .615 to go with three digs and two blocks, one solo. Jordan Anderson had five aces to go with a match-high 28 digs.
It left Sacramento State 19-8 overall, 10-1 in the Big Sky, while NAU improved to 10-12, 6-5 with its third win in a row, all since losing to Sacramento State.
“We respect Sac State for sure. They’re mature and they play the game the right way,” said NAU coach Ken Murphy, whose team lost at Sacramento in four earlier this season.
“We didn’t think of ourselves as underdogs though and we knew were going to battle. We believe in ourselves and we know we’ve got a lot of good things on our side and tonight we played the way we wanted to.”
Shannon Boyle led the Hornets with 20 kills and 20 digs, but hit .096. Mikaela Nocetti added 16 kills and 18 digs and Lana Brown and Sarah Davis had eight kills each. Brown hit .500 and had four blocks, one solo. Sacramento State still holds a one-game lead over Portland State in the Big Sky South.
Portland State won at Southern Utah 25-18, 25-22, 25-12 to improve to 18-5, 9-2, as Caitlin Bettenay had 21 kills, an ace, eight digs and three blocks. Katy Wilson had 10 kills, hit .429 and had five blocks, one solo.
North Dakota (24-4, 9-2) has a two-game lead in the North after beating visiting Montana 25-15, 22-25, 26-24, 25-19. Jordan Vail had 11 kills and six blocks, one solo, and Faith Dooley had 10 kills and hit .429 to go with six digs and seven blocks, one solo.
TCU beats WVU, UVa tops BC: TCU (10-11 overall, 2-7) got a much-needed Big 12 victory by taking down visiting West Virginia 21-25, 25-18, 25-21, 25-21. The Horned Frogs had lost five in a row.
Abigail Buckingham had 18 kills and hit .500 while getting four blocks, one solo. Ashleigh Martin had 14 kills, two aces, 12 digs and three blocks, while Anna Walsh had 12 kills, an ace, two digs and five blocks.
“We had a pretty rough first round of conference play and I don’t think anyone on our team or staff expected that,” TCU coach Jill Kramer said. “The cool thing about this week is that we had an extra day since we typically play on Wednesday and we got to play on Thursday. We had some time to reflect a little bit and then really hit the refresh and restart button.
“Our team has put a lot of effort into make sure we learned from the first round and all the different things we could do better going into the second round. I really want to commend our team on that. I was just telling them in the locker room that regardless of what the outcome would have been tonight, the way we played the game was much different and I thought it was a great team effort.”
West Virginia, which dropped to 14-8, 3-6, got nine kills each from Payton Caffrey and Natania Levak, who had four blocks. Mia Swanegan had six kills and seven blocks, one solo.
Around the nation: There was an upset in the Southland, as Northwestern State (13-13, 8-3) tightened things up by beating Sam Houston State (13-10, 9-1) in four. At the same time, Stephen F. Austin (22-5, 10-1) was winning in four at New Orleans, leaving SFA atop the league a game ahead of SHSU. Central Arkansas, which swept Abilene Christian on Thursday, is right behind at 9-2, while Northwestern State is tied with Houston Baptist …
In the Sun Belt West Division, it was a big night for former Volleyball Baton Rouge players.
First-place Texas State (18-7, 9-1) swept Louisiana-Monroe as junior middle Madison Daigle had eight kills, hit .583 to go with three aces, four block and four digs.
Second-place Louisiana (16-9, 9-2) swept Texas-Arlington as junior Hanna Rovira had seven kills, hit .500 and had seven blocks, three solo to go with four digs. Junior libero Sydney Davis had a match-high 12 digs.
Texas State plays at Louisiana on Saturday …
SMU is 15-7, 9-2 in the AAC after beating Cincinnati 25-19, 15-25, 25-9, 25-22, hoping to keep pace with Wichita State. Lauren Mills had 18 kills and 15 digs and Katie Hegarty had 14 kills and seven blocks …
Bowling Green beat Miami 22-25, 25-17, 26-24, 25-21 to break a tie and stand alone atop the Mid-American Conference. The Falcons, who beat Miami for the first time in four years, are 13-9 overall, 9-2 MAC and lead both the East Division and league overall, while Miami is 16-8, 8-3. Nicole Slimko and Isabel Kovacic led with 14 kills each.
Western Michigan leads the MAC West Division at 7-4.