Top 5 college men’s volleyball matches to follow tonight

Some of the biggest non-conference matches during the entire college men’s season will be played tonight.

No. 9 Lewis less than one week after upsetting BYU will now try to beat another MPSF school as it travels out to the a West Coast to play No. 5 Stanford. In addition, the Outrigger Invitational continues with No. 10 Penn State playing Hawai’i in the late-night match.

Check out the top five college men’s volleyball matches to follow tonight.


1. No. 5 Stanford (1-0, 0-0 MPSF) vs. No. 9 Lewis (1-1, 0-0 MIVA)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Palo Alto, Calif.
Follow live: Gametracker, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: It’s early in the college men’s volleyball season, but Stanford and Lewis will play each other in a non-conference match that could have significant NCAA Tournament implications later in the season. Both Stanford and Lewis have aspirations of reaching the newly expanded six-team NCAA Tournament and have already picked up signature non-conference victories so far this season. Stanford in its season opener defeated then-No. 2 UCLA in four games at the UC Santa Barbara Invitational on Saturday. The Cardinal in the victory finished with a .500 attack percentage and had four players with double-digit kills — including Preseason All-American outside attacker Brian Cook who had a match-high 16 kills. Lewis after opening its season with a home loss to then-No. 1 UC Irvine proceeded to upset then-No. 3 BYU in a home non-conference match Saturday. Outside attacker Greg Petty in the two non-conference matches led Lewis with a combined 29 kills.

2. No. 10 Penn State (0-1, 0-0 EIVA) vs. Hawai’i (0-0, 0-0 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Honolulu
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: It doesn’t get much easier for Penn State one day after losing to UCLA in a fifth-game overtime. Penn State following that season opening loss will now play a road match against the tournament-host Hawai’i. Outside attacker Aaron Russell in the loss to UCLA had a team-high 19 kills and two aces. Hawai’i enters the second day of the Outrigger Invitational after sweeping Ohio State on Thursday. The Rainbow Warriors in the victory out-hit the Buckeyes .360 to .296 and outside attacker Brook Sedore finished with a match-high 11 kills.


3. No. 4 UC Irvine (2-1, 0-0 MPSF) vs. No. 7 Pepperdine (0-0, 0-0 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Malibu, Calif.
Follow live: Gametracker, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: Two teams with some of the top middle attackers in the MPSF will go up against each other as UC Irvine travels to Pepperdine in its conference opener. Middle attackers Scott Kevorken and Collin Mehring in UC Irvine’s season opening Midwest road trip last week both led the Anteaters in blocks. Mehring also had a match-high five blocks in a sweep against Ball State to help UC Irvine end the road trip 2-1. Pepperdine finished last season in the nation’s top five in blocks per game average. In addition, middle attacker Parker Kalmbach was among the national leaders with a 1.23 blocks per game average. This will also Pepperdine’s season opener after going 2-2 in exhibition matches against Canadian schools during the last two weeks.

4. No. 6 UCLA (1-1, 0-0 MPSF) vs. Ohio State (0-1, 0-0 MIVA)
Match vitals:
4 p.m. in Honolulu
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets
What to know: UCLA will try to move one step closer to win a fourth consecutive Outrigger Invitational as it plays Ohio State on the second day of the non-conference tournament. Outside attacker Robart Page in the team’s tournament-opener had a match-high 23 to help UCLA rally to beat Penn State in five games on Thursday. In addition, outside attacker Mitch Stahl added 11 kills and a match-high four aces in the victory. Ohio State lost its tournament opener to Hawai’i in three games on Thursday. Despite the loss, setter Christy Blough in his college debut helped guide the Buckeyes’ offense to a .296 attack percentage.

5. BYU (0-2, 0-0 MPSF) vs. Cal State Northridge (2-0, 1-0 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Provo, Utah
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: The beginning of a homestand could not come at a better time for the Cougars. BYU will open its conference season at home against Cal State Northridge after losing both its matches against Loyola and Lewis on a season-opening Mdwest road trip last week. This is second time in the last 10 years that the Cougars have opened a season 0-2. However, BYU coach Chris McGown said in an interview with Off the Block earlier in the week that his team is not panicking about the slow start. Cal State Northridge opened its conference season as it defeated Cal Baptist on Wednesday.

BONUS TOP 5 MATCH TO FOLLOW
Pacific (1-0, 0-0 MPSF) vs. Grand Canyon (0-0, 0-0 MIVA)

Match vitals: 7 p.m. in Stockton, Calif.
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: Few teams had more positive momentum entering the off-season last year than the Antelopes. Grand Canyon will play Pacific in its season opener after ending last year winning its first postseason match and having its first winning record in program history. The team also returns a majority of starters who helped upset Ohio State in the MIVA Tournament. In addition, outside attacker Ben Ponnet was a Preseason All-MIVA selection as Grand Canyon was picked in the conference’s preseason coaches poll to finish in the top four of the MIVA. Pacific is beginning its final season in program history after the school announced in October that it would drop men’s volleyball to finance a new university strategic initiative. The Tigers opened their season last weekend with a victory against Cal State Northridge at the UC Santa Barbara Invitational.