The weekend can get hectic during the college men’s volleyball season. That’s why Off the Block is providing the top five things to take away from all the NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball matches this weekend.
1. No. 1 vs. No. 2 match set — Both No. 1/1 Long Beach State and No. 2/2 UCLA won their matches this weekend to set up a showdown between the nation’s top-two ranked teams. The 49ers will play host to the Bruins on Saturday to begin a non-conference home-and-home series. Unless there is any changes at the top of the new weekly polls that will be released Monday and Tuesday, this will be the first No. 1 versus No. 2 regular season match-up since Ohio State played UCLA in the opening week of the 2017 season.
2. Long Beach State offense unstoppable — No Long Beach State starter hit less than .400 as the team had a season-high .577 attack percentage in a road sweep against George Mason on Saturday. This extended the 49ers’ streak to five consecutive matches with more than a .400 attack percentage.
3. UCLA pounds Grand Canyon — All-American setter Micah Ma’a led the offense to a season-best .494 attack percentage as No. 2/2 UCLA swept No. 10/10 Grand Canyon to remain undefeated in the MPSF. Opposite Christian Hessenauer in the victory led all players with 14 kills, while middle attacker Daenan Gyimah added nine kills on a .667 attack percentage. Despite the loss, Grand Canyon set a program attendance record at Antelope Gym with 1,524 people.
4. Charleston gets historic win — Three years into its EIVA tenure and Charleston now has a conference win. Charleston upset Princeton in five games on Friday to earn the first conference victory in program history and end its 28-match EIVA losing streak. In addition, middle attacker Eugene Stuart the following day had a team-high 10 kills on a .571 attack percentage, three aces and five blocks as Charleston beat Princeton in three games to complete the two-match series sweep.
5. Sander shines for BYU — BYU All-American outside attacker Brenden Sander finished with both a season-high 23 kills and five aces as No. 7/7 BYU beat No. 14 USC in four games on Saturday. In addition, Sander in the conference opener hit more than .350 for the second consecutive match.