Intra-state clashes headline the final week of non-conference volleyball action
• It is the final week of non-conference play and intrastate rivals take center stage this week as No. 16 UTAH hosts No. 14 BYU on Pac-12 Networks on Thursday, while COLORADO closes out the week at No. 22 Colorado State on Sunday.
• Pac-12 Networks will also televise a Friday evening match from No. 4 STANFORD when the Cardinal host Pacific.
• Stanford remains the Conference’s leader in the AVCA Coaches Poll, holding steady at No. 4. WASHINGTON stays in the top-10, as well, earning a No. 7 national ranking, slightly better than last week’s poll spot. Meanwhile, OREGON improves to No. 11, UCLA is at No. 13, UTAH continues to climb and is at No. 16, while USC nabs the 18th spot in the polling. The Buffs and WASHINGTON STATE are receiving votes.
• Other matches of note are OREGON STATE taking on No. 1 Minnesota at the Boise State Classic; the Huskies and Trojans travel to College Park, Md., for the Maryland Challenge to play Oklahoma and the Terps; and ARIZONA is back in action to host the Wildcat Classic this week after having its trip to Florida last week cancelled due to Hurricane Irma.
• After losing its season opener, CALIFORNIA has reeled off eight wins in a row and is just one victory shy of matching its win total all of last season. The Bears stay close to home as they try for win No. 9 under first-year head coach Matt McShane, hosting local rival Saint Mary’s (Calif.) on Friday, followed by a trip to Pacific on Sunday.
• Utah’s Adora Anae became the 10th player in program history to reach the 1,000-dig mark and the fifth to also reach the 1,000 kills.
• Washington State head coach Jen Greeny is going for her 100th win at WSU when the Cougs travel to the Missouri State Dr. Mary Jo Wynn Invitational this week.
• Five Pac-12 teams are among the top 25 teams in the nation in blocks. WSU leads NCAA Division programs with a blocks average of 3.47 bps, while UW ranks fourth (3.41) and ARIZONA is 10th (3.11).
• Half of the league teams also rank in the top 25 in the country in hitting percentage, led by Colorado which boasts a .308 hitting efficiency and OSU (.307) also appears in the top 10.
• Individually, WSU’s Jocelyn Urias is the Conference’s blocks leader, ranking third in the nation in the category (1.77), followed by a couple of Huskies - Marion Hazelwood (4th, 1.77) and Lauren Sanders (6th, 1.69). Stanford’s Kathryn Plummer is sixth in the nation in kills per set (5.00) and OSU’s Mary-Kate Marshall leads the Conference and is third in points per set (5.71).
• Three of the top-seven assist producers in the league, to-date, are freshmen. ARIZONA STATE’s Shelbie Dobmeier leads the Conference with an average of 12.04. Colorado’s Brynna Deluzio is tied for second with an average of 11.25 and OSU’s Kylee McLaughlin is seventh in the stats rankings, respectively, with an average of 10.17.
• OSU’s Mary-Kate Marshall and Utah’s Adora Anae are among the nation’s active leaders in total kills. Marshall enters the week ranked fourth among the NCAA’s active leaders with 1,486, while Anae is just behind in fifth with 1,474. That also puts them in the top 60 all-time in Pac-12 history in the category.
• Pac-12 teams have routinely posted successful starts to the season and the start to the 2017 campaign is no different. League teams went 28-5 (.875) to open the season. Team have posted a 360-86 cumulative record for the opening weekend since 2002, for an impressive 80.7 winning percentage. Significant wins included the Ducks defeating then-No. 5 Nebraska, followed by a near-victory over then-No. 1 Texas; The Bruins defeated then-No. 20 Hawai’i.
• Washington was picked to win the Pac-12 regular-season crown, as decided on by a vote of the league’s coaches. The Huskies edged out the Cardinal for the top spot in the poll. UW received eight first-place votes and 118 points, while Stanford had three first-place votes and 113 points. The Ducks were picked third (93 points) and Utah placed fourth (88 points), also receiving the final remaining first-place vote. The Huskies have won back-to-back regular-season crowns and three of the last four.
• Seven AVCA All-Americans return from last year, including Pac-12 Player of the Year Courtney Schwan and AVCA National Freshman of the Year Kathryn Plummer. UW has three 2016 All-Americans on its current roster, while Stanford has two. Senior Adora Anae is also back for the Utes this year, as is Ducks junior Lindsey Vander Weide.
• Eight of the 14 players named to the 2016 All-Pac-12 team return for 2017, including UW’s Schwan, who was tabbed the 2016 Pac-12 Player of the Year. Stanford’s Plummer was voted the 2016 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year and looks to build upon an impressive rookie campaign.
• The Pac-12 welcomes four new coaches to the Conference this season. Sanja Tomasevic takes over the helm at ARIZONA STATE; Matt Ulmer roams the sidelines as head coach in Eugene; Matt McShane was promoted to head coach at CALIFORNIA; while Kevin Hambly takes over a Stanford program that is defending its national crown. Half the Pac-12 teams have put new coaches in place over the last two years, three due to retirement of long-time head coaches. Seven in total have coaches that have been at the helm for three years or less in the Pac-12.
• Pac-12 volleyball continues to attract marquee student-athletes. Eight Pac-12 teams landed at least one Volleyball Magazine FAB 50 recruit with UCLA pacing the league with four.
CONFERENCE STANDINGS (Expanded standings)
|Teams||Pac-12 Record||Overall Record|
|Wednesday, Sept. 13||TV/Stream||Time|
|Loyola Marymount at #13 UCLA||P12N||4:30 p.m. PT|
|Thursday, Sept. 14||TV/Stream||Time|
|Oklahoma at #7 WASHINGTON (1)||1 p.m. PT|
|#18 USC at Maryland (1)||4 p.m. PT|
|#14 Brigham Young at #16 UTAH||P12N||6 p.m. PT|
|Friday, Sept. 15|
|WASHINGTON STATE at Tennessee State (5)||9 a.m. PT|
|#1 Minnesota at OREGON STATE (4)||9 a.m. PT|
|William and Mary at ARIZONA (2)||12:30 p.m. PT|
|Oklahoma at #18 USC (1)||1 p.m. PT|
|WASHINGTON STATE at Missouri State (5)||4 p.m. PT|
|#7 WASHINGTON at Maryland (1)||4 p.m. MT|
|#16 UTAH at Utah Valley||4 p.m. PT|
|Lamar at ARIZONA STATE (3)||5 p.m. PT|
|Xavier at COLORADO||6 p.m. PT|
|Idaho State at OREGON STATE (4)||6:30 p.m. PT|
|Pacific at #4 STANFORD||P12N||7 p.m. PT|
|#13 UCLA at Long Beach State||7 p.m. PT|
|Saint Mary's (Calif.) at CALIFORNIA||6 p.m. PT|
|New Mexico State at ARIZONA (2)||7 p.m. PT|
|Saturday, Sept. 16|
|Houston Baptist at ARIZONA STATE||9 a.m. PT|
|Chattanooga at WASHINGTON STATE (5)||9:30 a.m. PT|
|Albany at COLORADO (6)||10 a.m. PT|
|OREGON STATE at Boise State (4)||11 a.m. PT|
|Illinois State at ARIZONA (2)||1 p.m. PT|
|COLORADO at #22 Colorado State (6)||6 p.m. PT|
|#4 STANFORD at Saint Mary's (Calif.)||7 p.m. PT|
|CALIFORNIA at Pacific||7 p.m. PT|
|UT Arlington at ARIZONA STATE (3)||7 p.m. PT|
1 - Maryland Challenge, College Park, Md.; 2 - Wildcat Classic, Tuscon, Ariz.; 3 - UT Arlington Maverick Classic, Arlington, Texas.; 4 - Boise State Classic, Boise, Idaho.; 5 - Missouri St. Dr. Mary Jo Wynn Invitational, Springfield, Mo.; 6 - Colorado State Invitational, Fort Collins, Colo.
2017 PAC-12 VOLLEYBALL PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Offensive: Taylor Agost, Oregon
Defensive: Berkeley Oblad, Utah
Freshman: Mima Mirkovic, California
Offensive: Oluoma Okaro, ASU; Antzela Dempi, CAL; Alexa Smith, COLO; Mary-Kate Marshall, OSU; Kathryn Plummer, STAN; Jordan Dunn, USC; Bailey Choy, UTAH; Marion Hazelwood, OSU; Jocelyn Urias, WSU.
Defensive: Halle Harker, ASU; Jessica Gafney, CAL; Naghede, Abu, COLO; Ronika Stone, ORE; Audrianna Fitzmorris, STAN; Zana Muno, UCLA; Victoria Garrick, USC; Tia Scambray, WASH; Jocelyn Urias, WSU.
Freshman: Griere Hughes, ASU; Brynna Deluzio, COLO; Maddie Goings, OSU; Brooke Botkin, USC, Dani Barton, UTAH.
|Aug. 28||Khalia Lanier, USC||Zana Muno, UCLA||Mac May, UCLA|
|Sept. 4||Mary-Kate Marshall, OSU||Tawnee Luafalemana, Utah||Dani Barton, Utah|
|Sept. 11||Taylor Agost, ORE||Berkeley Oblad, Utah||Mima Mirkovic, CAL|