Top 5 college men’s volleyball matches to follow tonight

It’s the final day of the regular season and there is still plenty on the line.

No. 9 UCLA and No. 10 Hawai’i will both play in must-win matches as they try to clinch the final berth in the MPSF Tournament. In addition, three teams still have a shot at the No. 5 seed for the upcoming MPSF Tournament.

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


1. No. 3 BYU (18-7, 18-5 MPSF) vs. No. 9 UCLA (17-10, 14-9 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. Saturday in Los Angeles
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-matches tweets
What to know: Everything is on the line for the Bruins in their season finale. UCLA faces a virtual must-win situation to avoid missing the MPSF Tournament for the first time in its program history as it plays host to first-place BYU. The Bruins enter the weekend tied for fifth place in the conference, but a loss could drop the team into ninth place and out of the eight-team MPSF Tournament. After climbing to No. 1 in the national coaches poll in early February, UCLA has gone 4-6 in the final two months of the regular season. However, the team picked up back-to-back victories in its last two matches, including a five-game upset victory against No. 7 Long Beach State last week. This match will also feature the top servers in the conference and potential front-runners for the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Server of the Year. UCLA outside attacker Gonzalo Quiroga leads the conference with 49 aces and a 0.49 aces per game average, while BYU outside attacker Taylor Sander is second in the MPSF with a 0.42 aces per game average. BYU despite three consecutive road losses has already clinched the No. 1 seed and home-court advantage throughout the upcoming MPSF Tournament.

2. No. 4 Pepperdine (17-6, 17-6 MPSF) vs. No. 10 Hawai’i (16-10, 13-10 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Malibu, Calif.
Follow live: Gametracker, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: The postseason hopes for Hawai’i come down to its ability to win on the road — a task that has haunted the Rainbow Warriors all season. Hawai’i enters the final day of the regular season needing to beat Pepperdine and UCLA to lose to BYU in order to clinch a berth in the MPSF Tournament for the second consecutive year. The Rainbow Warriors were swept in their series opener against the Waves on Friday to drop to 4-7 on the road this season. In addition, Hawai’i has not defeated a top-10 ranked team on the road this entire season. Pepperdine in the series opener held Hawai’i to a .165 attack percentage. The Waves also enter this regular season finale with a chance to lock-up the No. 2 seed for the upcoming MPSF Tournament if it beats the Rainbow Warriors.


3. No. 7 Long Beach State (17-9, 14-9 MPSF) vs. Cal State Northridge (10-16, 9-14 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Northridge, Calif.
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: Long Beach State has already clinched a playoff spot, but its regular season finale against Cal State Northridge will go a long way to determining its seed for the upcoming MPSF Tournament. The 49ers are in a three-way tie for fifth-place in the MPSF standings and their conference tournament seed based on tonight’s results can fluctuate anywhere between the No. 5 seed to the No. 8 seed. This will also be the second meeting between Long Beach State and Cal State Northridge in the last three days. The 49ers at home swept the Mastodons on Thursday. All-American outside attacker Taylor Crabb playing his senior finished with a match-high 17 kills against Cal State Northridge.

4. No. 5 UC Irvine (17-10, 14-9 MPSF) vs. Pacific (3-23, 2-21 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Irvine, Calif.
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: Regardless of the match’s outcome, this is the end for Pacific’s men’s volleyball program. Pacific will play the final match in its program history as it closes out its regular season against UC Irvine. The university announced in the off-season that Pacific would disband its men’s volleyball at the end of the season because of budgetary reasons and to finance a new schoolwide financial initiative. This decision marked an end the program after almost 30 years and made Pacific the first NCAA Division I-II school to eliminate its men’s volleyball team since Mercyhurst in 2008. UC Irvine enters its final home match of the season having clinched a postseason berth and trying to lock-up the No. 5 seed for the upcoming MPSF Tournament.

5. Lewis (20-6, 10-3 MIVA) vs. Grand Canyon (13-17, 2-11 MIVA)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Romeoville, Ill.
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: Grand Canyon and Lewis don’t have anything to gain from their regular season finale except for a possible mental edge one week before the teams meet again in the conference tournament. Lewis with its series opener victory against Grand Canyon on Friday clinched the No. 2 seed for the upcoming MIVA Tournament. In addition, the Flyers will play host to the No. 7 seed Antelopes in the conference tournament quarterfinals next week. Beyond the conference tournament, this regular season match could have significant NCAA Tournament implications. Lewis and Stanford are currently battling for the final at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament, according to the latest Off the Block bracketology projections. Grand Canyon has played both teams this season, and one of the criteria the NCAA Tournament selection committee uses is record against common opponents.