The biggest non-conference weekend of the season has passed and left plenty of storylines.
Check out the five things to take away from this weekend’s matches.
1. Loyola dominates AVCA Showcase — Preseason All-American outside attacker Cody Caldwell had a tournament-high 39 combined kills as No. 2 Loyola defeated both No. 6 BYU and No. 10 Stanford at the AVCA Showcase. With these two victories, the defending NCAA champion Ramblers will finish the regular season undefeated against the MPSF in non-conference play.
2. UC Irvine wins Outrigger Invitational — Outside attacker Tamir Hershko had a match-high 17 kills on a .696 attack percentage as No. 8 UC Irvine swept No. 10 Hawai’i on Sunday to win the Outrigger Invitational. UC Irvine in its debut at the non-conference tournament went undefeated and Hershko was named the most valuable player.
3. UC Santa Barbara perfect at home — UC Santa Barbara won all four of its non-conference matches last week, including going undefeated at its home tournament the Asics Invitational with wins against No. 15 IPFW, Princeton and Limestone. In addition, outside attacker Weston Nielsen had a match-high 18 kills in UC Santa Barbara’s four-game victory against IPFW — the only match that the Gauchos did not sweep.
4. UCLA freshmen off to fast start — Both freshmen outside attackers Jake Arnitz and J.T. Hatch had a match-high 18 kills in separate matches as UCLA finished the Asics Invitational undefeated. UCLA also set a program single-match record with 15 aces in its tournament-finale against Limestone.
5. EIVA struggles on West Coast — The EIVA finished the weekend a combined 1-9 against the MPSF in non-conference play. Princeton was the lone EIVA team to win during the weekend as it defeated No. 13 Cal State Northridge in five games.