Top college men’s volleyball matches to follow tonight

It’s the start to the second half of the college men’s volleyball season — when the real March Madness begins.

No. 5 Hawai’i and No. 6 Pepperdine highlight the slate of matches tonight as both teams try to get a signature victory and remain in contention for a conference title. In addition, No. 9 UCLA will look to further solidify its chances at a postseason berth as it plays No. 10 Long Beach State.

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


No. 5 Pepperdine (13-2, 9-2 MPSF) vs. No. 6 Hawai’i (13-3, 10-2 MPSF)
Match vitals: 7 p.m. in Honolulu
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, Radio feed, In-match tweets
What to know: No. 6 Hawai’i is not only back in serious conference championship contention but this weekend will play its biggest home matches in recent history. Hawai’i and No. 5 Pepperdine will open a two-match series with both teams in the top four of the MPSF standings and less than two matches out of first place. Despite missing the postseason two of the last three years, Hawai’i is on a six-match winning streak and attempting to move a step closer to a top-four finish in the MPSF standings and earning a home postseason match for the first time since 2010. Pepperdine has won eight of its last nine matches and leads the nation with a .365 attack percentage. In addition, the Waves swept two-match series against the Rainbow Warriors in the final weekend of the regular season last year to prevent Hawai’i from making the eight-team MPSF Tournament. This match will also feature two of the top opposites in the conference and mid-season front-runners for the Bryan Ivie Award, which is present nation’s best opposite. Pepperdine opposite Parker Kalmbach has a conference-best 4.02 kills per game average and led the Waves in kills during their last five matches. Hawai’i opposite Brook Sedore is fourth in the conference with a 3.63 kills per game average and had at least 20 kills in three matches last month. The Rainbow Warriors are also undefeated at home against the Waves since 2009, including beating Pepperdine in the 2010 MPSF Tournament quarterfinals for the program’s last postseason victory.

No. 9 UCLA (10-6, 6-6 MPSF) vs. No. 10 Long Beach State (9-8, 6-8 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Los Angeles
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, Radio feed, In-match tweets
What to know: No. 9 UCLA will attempt to avenge an early-season loss and move up in the conference standings as it plays host to No. 10 Long Beach State. Despite having a starting lineup primarily comprised of freshmen and sophomores, the Bruins have climbed into a tie for sixth place in the MPSF. In addition, freshman outside attacker J.T. Hatch had a season-high 17 kills in UCLA’s four-game win against No. 14 Cal State Northridge on Tuesday for the team’s fourth win on its last five matches. Coach John Speraw also said in a recent interview with Off the Block that the Bruins’ improved blocking has been one of reasons for their recent success. UCLA is fourth in the MPSF averaging 2.85 blocks per game and entered its match against Cal State Northridge having out-blocked its opponents in the last eight matches. The Bruins out-blocked the 49ers 12.5 to 8 in their previous meeting in February but lost the match in four games. Long Beach State enters this road match in eighth place in the MPSF — the final spot for the upcoming eight-team MPSF Tournament in April. Libero Ryan Windisch also leads the conference with a 2.92 digs per game average but did not play in Long Beach State’s upset victory against No. 8 UC Santa Barbara on Wednesday.


Grand Canyon (8-7, 3-5 MIVA) vs. Barton (8-9, 7-6 CC)
Match vitals:
Noon in Phoenix, Arizona
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets

Barton (8-9, 7-6 CC) vs. Concordia-Irvine
Match vitals:
3 p.m. in Phoenix, Arizona
Follow live: Live stats

Erskine (10-3, 7-1 CC) vs. North Greenville (7-10, 2-7 CC)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Tigerville, South Carolina
Follow live: Live stats, Online video

King (7-5, 6-2 CC) vs. Alderson Broaddus (9-3)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Bristol, Tennessee
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets

Princeton (6-5, 3-1 EIVA) vs. Juniata
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Princeton, New Jersey
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets

No. 13 IPFW (10-5, 4-3 MIVA) vs. Loras
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Fort Wayne, Indiana
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets

Charleston (3-13) vs. Bluefield
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Bluefield, Virginia
Follow live: Online video

No. 3 UC Irvine (17-3, 12-2 MPSF) vs. No. 12 Ball State (9-7, 4-3 MIVA)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Irvine, California
Follow live: Live Stats, Online video, In-match tweets

No. 8 UC Santa Barbara (11-7, 7-7 MPSF) vs. No. 14 Cal State Northridge (5-11, 3-9 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Santa Barbara, California
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets

No. 4 BYU (13-3, 10-2 MPSF) vs. Stanford (6-11, 3-8 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Palo Alto, California
Follow live: Online video, In-match tweets

Cal Baptist (5-12, 1-11 MPSF) vs. UC San Diego (2-15, 0-13 MPSF)
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in San Diego
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets

Grand Canyon (8-7, 3-5 MIVA) vs. Concordia-Irvine
Match vitals:
7 p.m. in Phoenix, Arizona
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets