NCAA: Long Beach-UCI madness, Wisconsin wins big, Purdue bounces back, BYU smashes USD

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Stanford's Inky Ajanaku blocks Washington State's Taylor Mims/Ed Chan, VBshots.com

A day earlier, the Big West announced that Long Beach State and UC Irvine would replay the majority of their September 24 match at UCI— won by Long Beach in five, 15-13 in the fifth — from the point of a second-set protest.

And then Friday night in the Pyramid, UC Irvine beat the Beach in five, winning 15-12 with the last point of the Big West match ending on a red-card to Long Beach coach Brian Gimmillaro. Long Beach State said on its website it is protesting.

Just another night in NCAA volleyball …

In the Big Ten, No. 4 Wisconsin beat No. 10 Penn State in four for its first victory over the Nittany Lions since 2011, while unranked Purdue thumped No. 13 Michigan in four and No. 1 Nebraska swept No. 24 Illinois.

No. 16 BYU overpowered No. 5 San Diego in their West Coast Conference rematch.

In the Pac-12, unranked Arizona won at No. 20 Oregon, No. 17 Stanford swept No. 18 Washington State and No. 21 Utah won at No. 24 USC.

We’ll get to those and all the other Friday results, but first a look at Saturday’s slate, which starts with a big one in the Big 12, No. 2 Texas at No. 6 Kansas.

These two programs will meet for the fourth time when both teams are ranked in the top 10. The Longhorns won the previous meeting in Austin on September 24 (27-25, 25-16, 18-25, 25-19). Other than that match, both teams have gone undefeated in conference play.

Also in the Big 12 Saturday, TCU is at Oklahoma, Texas Tech is at West Virginia and Baylor is at Kansas State.

The Big Ten is busy again, with another showcase match involving No. 10 Penn State at No. 3 Minnesota. The Gophers had an easy sweep of Rutgers on Friday, while Penn State has to bounce back quickly from its loss in Madison.

Purdue gets another shot at moving back into the rankings when No. 15 Michigan State comes to town. Michigan goes to Indiana and Illinois is at Iowa. Nebraska plays host to Northwestern.

In the Pac-12, Utah has to turn around in a hurry at No. 12 UCLA, which is coming off a five-set win Friday over Colorado, while Washington State goes to Cal and Colorado goes to USC.

The only ACC match has Virginia at Clemson, while the SEC has football Saturday off.

No. 14 Hawai’i, which swept UC Riverside on Friday, plays another Big West match at Fullerton.

Among the mid-major matches to watch, the two unbeaten division leaders in the MAC, both 19-4 and 11-0, square off when Northern Illinois goes to Miami, Ohio.

Creighton goes to St. John’s in the Big East; in the Big Sky North Dakota is at Montana State, Northern Arizona is at Portland State and surging Northern Colorado is at Montana; Horizon League action includes Cleveland State entertaining Northern Kentucky; Princeton goes to Harvard in the Ivy League; Fairfield tries to keep dominating the Metro Atlantic when Rider visits; in the Missouri Valley Missouri State entertains Northern Iowa while Wichita State plays host to Drake; and Austin Peay goes to Southeast Missouri in the Ohio Valley.

Red-hot American leads Patriot League action by playing host to Army; Texas State hopes to stay on its Sun Belt roll at Louisiana-Monroe; and Texas A&M Corpus Christi has Incarnate Word at home.

Madness at Long Beach State

The Anteaters trailed 0-2 before rallying to win and then, after they did, stood at the net waiting to shake hands for quite a while as the stunned Beach players simply stood around. The 19-25, 27-29, 25-20, 25-17, 15-12 victory left UCI 10-13, 5-4, while Long Beach fell to 14-8, 8-1.

First some back story. On Thursday, the Big West Conference had this on its website:

Due to a protest upheld by the NCAA, the September 24 Long Beach State at UC Irvine women’s volleyball match has been ruled a no-contest.  The NCAA has ruled that the match is to be replayed from the point of the protest, which occurred in the second set.

The protest was the result of a misapplication of a player substitution rule against UC Irvine.

The rescheduling date for the resumption of the contest has yet to be determined by the two institutions.

That September 24 result is listed on the Long Beach website as “No Contest,” although the final score was 22-25, 25-23, 25-14, 18-25, 15-13.

This is from the Long Beach website account of that match:

Things got really interesting a few points later, as it appeared UCI went up 20-18. However, during another LBSU timeout, it was discovered that Irvine had made an illegal substitution. The score was then changed to 19-19, setting up a race to the finish. The teams tied at every point from 19-23 (resulting in a total of 21 tie scores in a 25-point set) before the Beach pulled away with a crucial 3-0 run to end the set and head to the locker room level at 1-1.

Anyway, back to Friday night at Long Beach, where UCI took a 14-12 lead on a swing by Victoria Dennis that was deep in the Beach court, but in.

Nonetheless, veteran Long Beach coach Brian Gimmillaro became extremely animated. Action was stopped while UCI’s Victoria Dennis waited patiently to serve.

Down ref Donna Hess went to talk to up official Syd Church. Church then called over the two captains while Hess went back and engaged Gimmillaro.

She eventually returned to the stand and then Church gave a red card to Gimmillaro. Later it was explained that since he already had gotten a yellow card in the fifth set, that was an automatic red, UCI got a point and the match ended. UCI rushed the court and then went to the net, where eventually the Long Beach players came to shake hands.

Dennis, who already had an ace in the match, led UCI with 19 kills. Harlee Kekauoha added 13.

Nele Barber led Long Beach with 23 kills and 21 digs, while Anete Brinke had 14 digs and 14 digs.

There were no quotes from either coach in either of the news releases, but if you want to watch the match, here is the link to the full video on the Big West website.

Purdue's Danielle Cuttino attacks against Michigan/Purdue photo
Purdue’s Danielle Cuttino attacks against Michigan/Purdue photo

Big Ten: Big wins for Wisconsin, Purdue

Wisconsin looked as sharp as the Badgers have been in their 25-16, 25-18, 18-25, 25-21 victory that left Nebraska alone at the top of the standings at 10-1 and pulled Wisconsin and Penn State into a tie for second at 9-2.

“We’ve had a couple rough matches over the past few weeks,” said senior middle Haleigh Nelson, whose losses to Penn State include the 2013 NCAA-title match. “When we dipped in that third set and we had a chance to come back in the fourth, we welcome that challenge because we’ve been really trying to work on our grit and our toughness.

“Even though we didn’t have a clean sweep with Penn State, it really showed a lot of our heart that we were in it and overcome that dip because we’ve been really working to face challenges and be strong and confident in challenges. While maybe you can look at it and say we kind of fell off a little bit in the third set, honestly it means a lot more that we were able to take that and respond.”

Wisconsin, 17-3, got a career-high 21 kills from junior outside Lauryn Gillis, who hit .391. Freshman outside Molly Haggerty had 16 kills, Nelson had 13 to go with an ace and five digs.

“Gilly was great,” Sheffield said. “That’s what we saw before her injury. I know she’s been a little bit frustrated with coming back. She was out and as soon as she was cleared to go, we threw her out there into the wolves that is the Big Ten. There can be some hard lessons when you’re not in the gym every single day for an extended period of time, and that’s what you run against.”

Penn State, 17-5, got 19 kills from Simone Lee and 12 from Ali Frantti.

Nebraska won its seventh in a row by beating visiting Illinois 26-24, 25-21, 25-19 to improve to 19-1, 10-1, while Illinois fell to 14-8, 7-4.

Briana Holman had 10 kills and a match-high four blocks for the Huskers, who hit their second-lowest percentage of the season at .186. Kadie Rolfzen had 10 kills and eight digs and Andie Malloy had 10 kills. Mikaela Foecke added eight kills, and Kelly Hunter had 37 assists and eight digs. Justine Wong-Orantes had a match-high 19 digs and now needs just 16 digs to break Kayla Banwarth’s career school record of 1,706.

Naya Crittenden led Illinois with 11 kills.

Purdue desperately needed to turn things around and did so by notching its fourth win of the season over a top-25 team by beating visiting Michigan 25-19, 20-25, 25-15, 25-17. It was also the eight straight time Purdue beat the Wolverines.

Junior Danielle Cuttino paced the Boilermakers with 19 kills, hit . 333, and had five blocks as her team improved to 14-8, 4-7. Sophomore Sherridan Atkinson had 13 kills and senior Faye Adelaja had 12 kills and five blocks.

Michigan, 18-5,  7-4, got 12 kills from Kelly Murphy.

Also in the Big Ten:

Minnesota made short work of Rutgers 25-17, 25-14, 25-15. The Gophers are 16-4, 8-3, while Rutgers is 4-20, 0-11. Paige Tapp and Sarah Willhite had 11 kills each for Minnesota.

Michigan State routed Indiana 25-23, 25-16, 25-22 to improve to 18-5, 7-4, while IU is 14-10, 3-8. Alyssa Garvelink led the Spartans with nine kills and hit .562.

No. 19 Ohio State, which lost at Maryland on Wednesday, beat the Terps back in Columbus 25-19, 25-16, 25-16. Ohio State, 15-9, 5-7, got seven blocks from Taylor Sandbothe, while Audra Appold had 16 kills and 12 digs. Maryland is 10-14, 2-10.

And Iowa beat visiting Northwestern 25-22, 25-18, 16-25, 26-24 to improve to 16-7, 6-5. Northwestern is 8-15, 1-10. Reghan Coyle had a career-high 14 kills for Iowa and hit .409.

Washington setter Haley MacDonald against Stanford on Friday/Ed Chan, VBshots.com
Washington setter Haley MacDonald against Stanford on Friday/Ed Chan, VBshots.com

Pac-12: Stanford, Utah, Arizona all winners

Stanford swept visiting Washington State 25-18, 25-21, 25-21, to improve to 14-6, 8-4 Pac-12, while dropping WSU to 17-6, 7-4.

Plummer led all players with 17 kills, one shy of her career-high, and had seven digs, a solo block and an ace. Ajanaku hit .529 and finished with 10 kills and three blocks. Junior opposite Merete Lutz had nine kills on .368 hitting, while freshman middle blocker Audriana Fitzmorris had seven kills, four blocks and three digs.

We caught up with Stanford coach John Dunning after the match:

And also Inky:

Washington State got 11 kills from Kyra Holt, who hit .053.

Washington stayed atop the league by sweeping Cal 25-18, 25-23, 25-19. The Huskies are 19-3, 9-3, while Cal is 8-13, 2-9. Courtney Schwan led with 11 kills, while Kara Bajema had eight kills and hit .583 and Tia Scambray had nine kills and hit .364.

Utah won for the fifth time on the road this season against a ranked team as it beat USC 30-32, 25-10, 25-20, 28-26.

Junior Adora Anae guided Utah to just its second win over USC on the road with a match-high 25 kills, while also matching a career-high with 25 digs. For Utah, it was the program’s first win over the Trojans on the road since joining the Pac-12 and it marked the first win at the Galen Center since 1986.

The Utes are 16-6, 7-4, while USC is 14-8, 6-5.

Khalia Lanier led USC with 18 kills.

Across town, UCLA held off Colorado 25-16, 25-16, 19-25, 19-25, 15-9.

UCLA, 17-4, 8-3, got a season-best 18 kills from Jordan Anderson and 16 kills from Jennie Frager, who hit .517. She also had eight blocks. Torrey Van Winden had 13 kills, 16 digs and five blocks.

Alexa Smith led Colorado, 12-9, 4-7, with 18 kills and 16 digs. Stephanie Shadley had 15 kills and 19 digs.

Arizona (14-9, 6-5) came up big by winning at Oregon (14-6, 7-4) 27-25, 17-25, 21-25, 25-13, 15-11.

“Terrific win for the team,” Arizona coach Dave Rubio said. “Great effort by everyone on the squad. We really had to dig deep to win the match, it was a much needed win.”

Kendra Dahlke, who did not play the first time these teams met this season in Tucson, a four-set Oregon win, led all scorers with 22 kills on .383 hitting. The sophomore added nine digs and four blocks. Kalei Mau added 16 kills.

Taylor Agost, Jolie Rasmussen and Lindsey Vander Weide had 13 kills apiece for Oregon.

And Arizona State (9-14, 2-9)  won at Oregon State (8-14, 1-10) 25-14, 22-25, 13-25, 21-25.

ACC: UNC, Florida State win, Notre Dame upset

No. 8 North Carolina won at Virginia Tech 25-21, 22-25, 25-21, 25-17 to maintain first in the ACC at 19-2, 11-0 ACC. Taylor Treacy led with 18 kills. VT is 8-14, 3-8.

No. 11 Florida State gave up a set to Louisville but came away with a 23-25, 25-18, 29-27, 25-10 victory to improve to 17-3, 10-1. The struggling Cardinals are 7-14, 2-9. Milica Kubura led the Seminoles with 14 kills.

Miami went to South Bend and shocked the Irish, edging Notre Dame 25-22, 25-22, 21-25, 22-25, 15-11.

The Hurricanes, 10-13, 4-7, got a big match from Olga Strantzali, who finished with a career-high 28 kills, adding 17 digs.

Notre Dame, 18-5, 9-2, fell a game behind FSU as ACC assist leader Caroline Holt sat out with an injury. Sydney Kuhn led the Irish with a career-high 19 kills. She added seven digs, three aces and one block to her line.

Georgia Tech won its ninth in a row by getting its 11th sweep of the season, 25-19, 25-20, 25-21 over Virginia. The Yellow Jackets, 19-5, 10-2, Gabriela Stavnetchei led the Jackets with 14 kills and added 10 digs. Teegan Van Gunst added 13 kills. Virginia is 4-19, 1-10.

Also, Syracuse beat visiting Wake Forest in five, Pittsburgh did the same to NC State and Duke beat Boston College in four to improve to 15-6 and keep pace near the top at 9-2.

SEC: Florida back tied for the lead

The Gators beat Ole Miss 25-22, 25-23, 27-25 to improve to 19-2, 9-1 and get into a tie for first in the league. Ole Miss is 13-10, 2-8.

Rhamat Alhassan had 14 kills, hit .545 and had five blocks. Alex Holston added 12 kills and two blocks, while Carli Snyder had nine kills and 12 digs.

Also in the SEC, Tennessee went to Alabama and came away with a sweep and South Carolina beat visiting LSU in four.

BYU big against USD

Senior middle blocker Amy Boswell had 14 kills and four blocks as BYU exacted some revenge for an earlier defeat to the Toreros with a 25-16, 25-22, 27-25 victory.

“I’m super happy with the way we played,” said BYU coach Heather Olmstead, whose team improved to 20-3, 9-2 in the West Coast Conference. “Our assistant coaches did a great job in preparing the team this week. I think it was one of our better performances this year. San Diego’s a really good team. I think it was a total team effort, and I’m happy with tonight.”

McKenna Miller added 13 kills.

Visiting San Diego, 19-3, 10-1, saw an 18-match winning streak snapped. Lisa Kramer and Kaity Edwards led the Toreros with 11 kills apiece.

Hawai’i, WKU win

The No. 14 Rainbow Wahine are 16-7, 8-1 in the Big West after beating UC Riverside 25-10, 25-18, 25-22. McKenna Granato led with 12 kills while Nikki Taylor added 11 and four blocks.

No. 23 WKU improved to 23-2, 10-0 in Conference USA by beating Marshall 25-20, 25-13, 25-18. Rachel Anderson led with 17 kills and hit .571, while Alyssa Cavanaugh added 12 kills.

Dayton wins, Valley tightens up

Dayton improved to 24-1, 10-0 in the Atlantic 10 by sweeping Saint Louis … In the Missouri Valley, Missouri State won its ninth in a row by sweeping Drake behind 20 kills from Lily Johnson, while Wichita State got knocked off by UNI in three creating quite the logjam at the top of the standings: Missouri State is 9-2, Northern Iowa 9-3 and Wichita is 8-4 …

Howard improved to 9-0 in the MEAC with a sweep of Norfolk State … Colgate is 9-2 in the Patriot after beating Navy in five .. Marquette is 19-5, 9-3 in the Big East after sweeping Villanova

In the Atlantic Sun, Kennesaw State is 8-1 after NJIT in four, while Lipscomb (7-2) had to go five to win at South Carolina Upstate …

SMU is 10-1 in the American Athletic as the Mustangs (17-6) beat Houston in three … Northeastern got to 9-3 in the Colonial by beating Charleston in four …

Denver won a big one in the Summit League to improve to 17-6, 9-2 by beating IPFW in four, while South Dakota improved to 20-4 and stayed atop the league by sweeping Omaha …

Murray State improved to 10-1 in the Ohio Valley by sweeping Southeast Missouri, while Austin Peay kept pace by beating Tennessee Martin to move to 9-2 …

Cleveland State is 19-4, 10-1 in the Horizon after sweeping Valparaiso … Coastal Carolina is 18-4, 9-1 in the Sun Belt after sweeping South Alabama and stayed with Texas State, which is 17-9, 10-1 after rallying from 0-2 to beat Louisiana-Lafayette in five.

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