Check out all the matches today involving NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball teams and how to follow them live.
No. 1/1 Ohio State (9-0, 0-0 MIVA) vs. No. 12 Ball State (8-1, 0-0 MIVA)
Match vitals: 7:30 p.m. in Muncie, Indiana
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, In-match tweets
What to know: No. 1/1 Ohio State will return to the site of its last loss before beginning its historic winning streak. The oldest Midwest rivalry in college volleyball will be renewed as Ohio State travels to No. 12 Ball State. The Buckeyes since being upset by the Cardinals last season at Worthen Arena, have won 33 matches to tie the program’s record for consecutive wins, last set in 1969-70. The defending NCAA champions have opened this season losing only a combined three games in the first month of the season, including four-game victories against No. 2/2 UCLA and No. 3/3 Long Beach State. All-American setter Christy Blough is second in the nation averaging 11.30 assists per game and has guided Ohio State’s offense to the third-best attack percentage in the nation at .347. The Buckeyes are the only team in the nation with multiple players in the nation’s top 10 for kills. All-American opposite Miles Johnson leads the MIVA and is third in the nation with a 4.34 kills per game average, while All-American outside attacker Nicolas Szerszen is seventh with a 4.07 kills per game average. In addition, Johnson was named the National Player of the Week after having a season-high 22 kills on a .395 attack percentage in the victory against Long Beach State on Saturday. Ball State enters this conference opener on a six-match winning streak and leads the nation in multiple defensive categories. The Cardinals have a nation-best .168 opponent attack percentage and held both No. 15 George Mason and NJIT to less than a .150 attack percentage in four-game victories last week. In addition, Ball State has a nation-best 2.69 blocks per game average — almost a 0.10 higher average than Ohio State. All-MIVA middle attacker Matt Walsh is second in the nation with a 1.29 blocks per game average, including having at least four blocks in all but two matches this season. Along with his defensive performance, Walsh has a team-best .543 attack percentage and is among the MIVA leaders for middle attackers with a 1.97 kills per game average. Freshman opposite Matt Szews and opposite Brendan Surane also are both in the conference’s top 10 averaging more than 3.25 kills per game.
No. 3/3 Long Beach State (7-2, 3-1 MPSF) vs. No. 9/10 Pepperdine (4-2, 2-1 MPSF)
Match vitals: 7 p.m. in Long Beach, California
Follow live: Live stats, Online video, Radio feed, In-match tweets
What to know: Pepperdine outside attacker David Wieczorek does not have as much hype as Long Beach State All-American outside attacker TJ DeFalco. However, the Pepperdine sophomore is putting up almost the same offensive numbers as the 2016 AVCA Newcomer of the Year in the first month of the season. Wieczorek and DeFalco will go up against each other as No. 3/3 Long Beach State plays host to No. 9/10 Pepperdine. Wieczorek is seventh in the MPSF with a 3.75 kills per game average, including having 17 kills on a .536 attack percentage in a five-game victory versus USC on Saturday. He also is in the top 15 of the MPSF with a .403 attack percentage. In addition, Wieczorek earlier this week was named MPSF Player of the Week and was voted by fans the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Player of the Month. DeFalco is sixth in the MPSF and in the nation’s top 10 averaging 3.97 kills per game. The outside attacker also has more than 20 kills in two of his last four matches and had a team-high 19 kills on a .382 attack percentage in a loss to No. 1/1 Ohio State on Saturday. Along with DeFalco, All-American setter Josh Tuaniga leads the nation with an 11.33 assists per game average. Libero Andrew Sato is in the nation’s top five averaging 2.69 digs per game, including having a season-high 23 digs in a non-conference win versus St. Francis last week. Long Beach State won both regular season matches against Pepperdine last season and swept the Waves in the MPSF Tournament quarterfinals.