College men’s volleyball matches to follow tonight

Photo by Fabiana Huffaker

Check out all the matches to follow today featuring NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball teams and how to follow the matches live.

ConfCarolinas Tournament finals

No. 1 seed Barton (24-4, 14-2 ConfCarolinas) vs. No. 2 seed King (20-9, 14-2 ConfCarolinas)
Match vitals: 6:30 p.m. in Wilson, North Carolina
Follow live: Live stats, Live video
What to know: This is a rematch of last year’s ConfCarolinas Tournament final match where top-seeded King defeated Barton in Bristol to earn a spot in the NCAA Tournament play-in match. Both teams finished the regular season tied for first last year, but the Tornadoes won the tiebreaker. This year, the two teams finished tied for first place again, but the Bulldogs won the tiebreaker and as a result host throughout the tournament. Barton has lost five conference matches in the last three seasons – three of them have come versus King. Barton is 13-2 at home, but a perfect 8-0 at home in conference play. Conversely, King is 7-5 on the road, including a 6-2 mark on the road in conference play. In the match played at Barton during the regular season, the Bulldogs swept the Tornado by ouhitting them .393 to .171. The Mandilaris brothers had as many kills as King did as a team – 24. In the rematch at King, the Tornadoes won in four games by outhitting the Bulldogs, .382 to .244, and outblocking them 10 to 5. Six of the seven players named to the All-ConfCarolinas First Team were from either Barton or King, led by player of the year opposite Angelos Mandilaris of Barton. Mandilaris was a five-time league player of the week this season and currently leads the Bulldogs with 4.35 kills per game and a .356 attack percentage. Barton libero Aleksa Brkovic, who was named the conference’s Elite 23 award winner yesterday, leads the conference with 2.69 digs per game. While Barton leads the conference in all major offensive statistical categories, King has the edge defensively. The Tornadoes lead the conference and ranks second nationally with 2.56 blocks per game. King middle attackers Jon Wheaton and Dalton Johnson both rank in the top seven nationally with 1.230 and 1.194 blocks per game respectively. King ranks No. 5 in the nation with 9.68 digs per game while Barton comes in at No. 18 with 8.71.

EIVA Tournament semifinals

No. 1 seed Princeton (15-12, 13-1 EIVA) vs. No. 4 seed Saint Francis (15-13, 9-5 EIVA)
Match vitals: 8 p.m. on Thursday in Princeton, New Jersey
Follow live: Live stats, In-match Tweets
What to know: Highlighted by Uvaldo Acosta Memorial EIVA Player of the Year Award winner George Huhmann, Princeton garnered five all-EIVA selections – a program-best mark. Princeton coach Sam Shweisky was also named Bob Sweeney EIVA Coach of the Year, his second such honor. Saint Francis outside attacker Michael Fisher made the EIVA First-Team, while setter BJ Blair made the Second-Team. The Tigers and the Red Flash have played 51 matches in their all-time series history, with Princeton winning 37 of those matches. Don’t be fooled by Princeton’s 15-12 overall record, as their non-conference records ranks No. 11 nationally. Princeton leads the EIVA with 1.59 aces per game, led by outside attacker Kendall Ratter’s .447 aces per game. Huhmann leads the Tigers with .838 blocks per game, 3.37 kills per game, and a .348 attack percentage. Saint Francis ranked second in the EIVA at 11.71 kills per game and 11.07 assists per game. Fisher leads the Red Flash with .398 aces per game, 4.27 kills per game, and a .291 attack percentage. Interestingly, Princeton has the second best attack percentage in the EIVA at .284, while Saint Francis leads the EIVA with a .227 opponent attack percentage. In the March 2 match, Saint Francis won the final two games each by a score of 26-24. Red Flash outside attacker led all players with 18 kills on a .517 attack percentage. In the rematch, the Tigers outblocked the Red Flash, 15 to 5, while outhitting them .407 to 226. Individually, Huhmann had 16 kills on a .600 attack percentage en route to being named EIVA Offensive Player of the Week for Week 14.

No. 2 seed George Mason (17-8, 10-4 EIVA) vs. No. 3 Penn State (14-14, 10-4 EIVA)
Match vitals: 5 p.m. on Thursday in Princeton, New Jersey
Follow Live: Live stats, In-match Tweets
Season series: George Mason 2-0 (Both sweeps)
What to know: Penn State outside attacker Henrik Falck Lauten was named the 2019 EIVA Newcomer of the Year and to the EIVA Second-Team on Tuesday. Penn State middle attacker Jason Donorovich was named to the EIVA First-Team, outside attacker Matthew McLaren was named to the EIVA Second-Team, and opposite Brett Wildman garnered Honorable Mention honors. Penn State holds a 106-18 edge over George Mason in the all-time series. Six George Mason players garnered all-EIVA accolades, including libero Will Calaman, outside attacker Sam Greenslade, and opposite Hayden Wagner on the First-Team. George Mason either leads the EIVA or is No. 2 in all major statistical categories, including ranking first in assists per game (11.57), digs per game (9.15), attack percentage (.295), and kills per game (12.42). The Patriots are led by middle attack Jack Reese who leads the team with 1.157 blocks per game and a .407 attack percentage, and Wagner’s 4.31 kills per game (ranking fifth nationally). Donorovich leads Penn State with .355 aces per game, .892 blocks per game, and a .373 attack percentage. In the two regular season matches, George Mason outhit Penn State, .425 to .238.

MPSF Tournament semifinals

No. 1 seed Pepperdine (20-6, 9-3 MPSF) vs. No. 5 seed BYU (13-11, 6-6 MPSF)
Match vitals: 5 p.m. on Thursday in Malibu, California
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets
What to know: Pepperdine is a perfect 12-0 at home this season, while BYU just won their first away match versus a conference foe at Stanford last Saturday in #CincoSets. The teams have played 65 matches against one another, and BYU holds a match edge in the series all time. The Cougars are 11-24 all time in Malibu. The last time the two teams played in a MPSF Tournament match was in the 2008 finals, where the No. 5 seeded Waves defeated the No. 2 seeded Cougars in #CincoSets in Long Beach. The host, Pepperdine, will come into the match rested as they had last weekend off. Both teams will feature star power, as Pepperdine outside attacker David Wieczorek was named back-to-back conference Player of the Year last week, while BYU outside attacker Davide Gardini was named conference Freshman of the Year. Pepperdine opposite Michael Wexter and BYU opposite Gabi Garcia Fernandez were also named to the MPSF First-Team. The Cougars will try to use their block to neutralize the Waves attack, as BYU leads the MPSF with 2.48 blocks per game. On the other side of the net, Pepperdine leads the conference with 12.58 assists per game, 9.22 digs per game, 13.47 kills per game, and a .343 attack percentage. In the Feb. 6 match, the Waves outserved the Cougars, 13 to 3, but the BYU won the rematch on account of their superior block (18 to 7).

No. 2 seed UCLA (19-8, 8-4 MPSF) vs. No. 3 seed USC (17-9, 7-5 MPSF)
Match vitals: 7:30 p.m. on Thursday in Malibu, California
Follow Live: Live stats, In-match tweets
What to know: The ugly incident the followed USC’s April 6 victory is still being talked about in men’s volleyball circles, so there is going to be a lot of intrigue with this already hotly contested rivalry match. USC is 4-1 on neutral courts, while UCLA is 2-0. Both teams lost their only match in Malibu this year. The last time the Trojans and Bruins played an MPSF Tournament match was back in 2011 where USC defeated UCLA in four games. UCLA holds a 97-44 edge in the all-time series. UCLA (19) and USC (4) have combined for 23 of the 47 NCAA Tournament titles. UCLA leads the conference with 1.73 aces per game, led by setter Micah Ma’a’s .634 aces per game. Ma’a also leads the Bruins with 8.14 assists per game and 1.98 digs per game, while also recording the only triple-double in Division I/II this season (at BYU on March 14). UCLA middle attacker Daenen Gyimah joined Ma’a on the MPSF First-Team, while the Trojans were represented by opposite Ryan Moss and outside attacker Jack Wyett on the team. Both teams rank in the lower third of the nation in both blocks per game and digs per game, so it should be an offensive showdown. In the Feb. 24 match, the Bruins overwhelmed the Trojans with a dozen aces, while the Trojans won the rematch on the strength of their block (8 to 3).

Big West Tournament quarterfinals

No. 3 seed UC Irvine (17-10, 4-5 Big West) vs. No. 6 seed UC San Diego (7-19, 0-9 Big West)
Match vitals: 5 p.m. in Manoa, Hawai’i
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets, Live video
What to know: UC Irvine’s up and down season appears to be peaking at the right time. The Anteaters are coming off a home and away sweep of previously No. 3 UC Santa Barbara in which they welcomed back Sophomore outside attacker Joel Schneidmiller from injury, and he responded by collecting 31 total kills in the two matches while hitting over .400 in each match. Schneidmiller has been the key offensive weapon for the Anteaters this season, racking up 3.71 kills per game (third in Big West) and 0.55 aces per game (first in Big West). Senior setter Dante Chakravorti ranks third in the Big West with 9.89 assists per game while leading the Anteaters to the third best attack percentage in the conference at .319. 2019 has been a struggle for UC San Diego as they have yet to crack the win column in Big West play. There is hope on the horizon for the Tritons in the form of Sophomore outside attacker Wyatt Harrison and Freshman setter Blake Crisp. Harrison’s 3.27 kills per set ranks 8th in the conference while Crisp in split playing time collected 6.12 assists per set and made the Big West All-Freshman Team.

No. 4 seed UC Santa Barbara (17-9, 4-5 Big West) vs. No. 5 seed CSUN (13-13, 2-7 Big West)
Match vitals: 7:30 p.m. in Manoa, Hawai’i
Follow Live: Live stats, In-match tweets Live video
What to know: Just over a week ago, UC Santa Barbara was ranked No. 3 in the country and appeared to be a virtual lock for the NCAA Tournament. But after dropping four straight matches (three on the road), the Gauchos enter the Big West Tournament possibly needing two wins to get back into NCAA Tournament consideration. Senior outside attacker Corey Chavers has put together an All-American type year, ranking in the top 20 in the Big West in total kills, kills per game, aces per game, digs per game, and blocks per game. He is joined on the outside by Ryan Wilcox, who just took home the Big West Freshman of the Year award. The Matadors enter the Big West tournament looking to salvage a disappointing season that saw them win only two matches during the regular season of conference play. Despite this, CSUN received a strong senior year from outside attacker Dimitar Kalchev (All Big West First-Team), who ranked in the top five of Big West play in total kills and aces per game. Freshman setter Taylor Ittner handed out 9.76 assists per game and collected 1.60 digs per game while collecting Big West All-Freshman Team honors.

NAIA Men’s Volleyball Championship matches

Pool A matches

St. Andrews (20-6, 0-2 Pool A) vs. Aquinas (25-4, 1-1 Pool A)
Match vitals:
10 a.m. in Des Moines, Iowa
Follow live: Live stats , In-match tweets

Benedictine-Mesa (23-4, 2-0 Pool A) vs. Lourdes (24-4, 1-1 Pool A)
Match vitals:
1 p.m. in Des Moines, Iowa
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets

Pool B matches

St. Xavier (20-9, 0-2 Pool B) vs. Park (20-6, 0-2 Pool B)
Match vitals:
4 p.m. in Des Moines, Iowa
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets

Grand View (20-1, 2-0 Pool B) vs. Missouri Baptist (30-0, 2-0 Pool B)
Match vitals: 7 p.m. in Des Moines, Iowa
Follow live: Live stats, In-match tweets