MPSF Volleyball Results, Feb. 15

Brenden Sander, BYU (Photo courtesy BYU)
Brenden Sander, BYU (Photo courtesy BYU)
Feb. 15, 2018

BYU 3, Grand Canyon 0

Recap by BYU

PHOENIX -- No. 7 BYU men's volleyball beat No. 10 Grand Canyon in straight sets (25-17, 25-20, 25-17) behind 14 kills from Brenden Sander Thursday night at the GCU Arena.

"This was a great win for our guys tonight," BYU head coach Shawn Olmstead said. "Hats off to all the Cougar fans who packed the house and cheered for the team. Brenden played extremely physical to give us a boost."

In addition to Sander's 14 kills, he added a team-high five digs and four blocks while hitting at a season-high .636 clip. Leo Durkin set the team with 26 assists while Price Jarman contributed seven blocks in the win.

Three-straight Jarman blocks helped BYU (9-4, 2-0 MPSF) take a 3-1 lead early in the first set against Grand Canyon (11-4, 1-2 MPSF). A service ace then helped the Lopes even the score at 7-7. The Cougars countered with a 4-0 run, capped off by a Gabi Garcia Fernandez and Jarman block, to go back up 11-7. Three kills from Sander then kept BYU up 17-12, forcing a timeout from Grand Canyon. Two Andrew Lincoln kills pushed the Cougars to set point before one final kill from Sander gave BYU the set 25-17.

Several errors from the Cougars helped the Lopes go up 5-2 to start the second set. Grand Canyon remained ahead 10-7 after a kill, but back-to-back Sander blocks propelled a 5-0 BYU run to give it a 12-10 advantage. Another Cougar run, this time 5-1, made it 18-13. The Lopes then found an offensive rhythm, getting back within one, trailing 21-20. BYU closed out the set scoring the last four-straight points, however, to take the set 25-20.

The Cougars jumped out to a 9-2 lead in the third set after two kills each from Fernandez and Sander. An ace from Storm Fa'agata-Tufuga and kill from Sander extended the advantage to eight at 14-6, but a 4-1 Grand Canyon rally brought it back within five, down 15-10. The teams went back-and-forth from there as a Sander kill made it 22-14. A double-touch call on the Lopes then ended the set in BYU's favor, 25-17.

The Cougars stay on the road next, traveling to Concordia Irvine Saturday, Feb. 17, at 1 p.m. PST. Live stats for the match can be found on the BYU men's volleyball schedule page.

Concordia 3, Stanford 0

Recap by CUI

IRVINE, Calif. - The Concordia men's volleyball team earned their first-ever MPSF conference win on Thursday night in a sweep over Stanford by a score of 25-17, 25-16, 25-23.

It was a Concordia block-party all night long as the Eagles out blocked the Cardinal 12-3, led by Taylor Falduti, who tied his career-high with nine blocks. Not only did Concordia play well on defense in the front row, but they did well in the back row as the reigning MPSF Defensive Player of the Week, Jacob Weiser, had a match-high 10 digs. Darcy Taig went errorless on the night, collecting nine kills on 14 swings and hit .643.

The Eagles came right out of the gates gunning out to a 4-0 lead in the first set. Two kills by Jonathan Predney and multiple Cardinal errors extended the Eagle lead to 10-3. Points from Falduti, Predney and Taig gave Concordia a seven-point lead at 18-11 before teams traded points leading up to the end of the set, which ended with a Cardinal service error.

Stanford took the first two points of the second set, but Concordia responded right away with blocks from Taig and Falduti, while Falduti then teamed up with Barsemian for two more. The Eagles went on a 4-1 run consisting of more Falduti blocks, but the Cardinal responded with three points of their own to come within two at 9-7. Concordia was able to widen their lead to six as Falduti served an ace, making it 18-12 and forcing a Stanford timeout. The Eagles maintained the lead and closed the set with a 3-0 run ending with a solo block on a joust from Chandler Gibb.

The match came down to the wire in an intense third set. Both teams went head-to-head before Concordia jumped out to a 12-8 lead and caused a Stanford timeout. The Cardinal responded with a 5-1 run that contained a play where Weiser had a crowd-pleasing kick save to keep the ball in. Although the Eagles held a three-point lead late in the set, the Cardinal fought their way back to tie the set 23-23, A Stanford service error gave Concordia match point and Falduti ended it with a solo block, giving Concordia the win.

Concordia is 5-5 overall and 1-2 in the MPSF while Stanford is 2-11 overall and 0-2 in the conference. The Eagles will host BYU for the first time on Saturday at 1 PM. This will be the second meeting all-time as Concordia traveled to Provo, Utah last season.