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Beverly Oden

NCAA Men: Big Win Sends BYU to Top Spot

By January 23, 2013

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There's a new top dog in men's volleyball this week. The BYU Cougars rose to the top after beating No. 1 UCI 3-1 in Provo last weekend in front of a crowd of over 5,000 fans. Outside Hitter Taylor Sander was named AVCA Player of the Week for his performance in that game. Sander led the Cougars with 16 kills and also contributed eight digs and three blocks.

UCI managed to win only the third set in the match and had a rough week overall. The Anteaters also lost a five-setter to No. 13 Cal Baptist, who is proving to be a real threat this year. The loss is the third in a row for UCI which falls two spots to No. 3 in this week's poll.

There are no more undefeated teams in the top 15 as the last team with a goose egg in the loss column lost twice last week. Stanford came down to So Cal and lost 0-3 at USC and 1-3 at Pepperdine. After the win, the Waves rose two spots to No. 2 in the poll. Stanford was tied for fourth with UCLA this week, but those two team met up in Palo Alto last night and Stanford won the match 3-1.

Each of USC's big wins this season have been coupled with unexpected losses, so the Trojans fell a spot to No. 8 after beating Stanford and then losing in four to No. 14 Pacific. They did the same thing last week when they beat UCI in three but lost to UC San Diego 3-0. USC is off this week so hopefully they can use the time to figure out how to find some consistency.

More great match-ups are on the docket this week as UCI heads to Northridge and Long Beach State to try and halt their losing streak and Pepperdine will be in Hawaii for two matches this weekend. Here are the rest of your matches to watch.

Matches to Watch:

Wednesday, January 23rd
No. 3 UCI @ No. 9 CSUN

Friday, January 25th
No. 2 Pepperdine @ Hawaii
No. 7 Long Beach State @ No. 3 UCI
No. 9 CSUN @ No. 12 UCSD
No. 10 UCSB @ No. 14 Pacific

Saturday, January 26th
No. 10 UCSB @ No. 4 Stanford
No. 7 Long Beach State @ No. 12 UCSD

Sunday, January 27th
No. 2 Pepperdine @ Hawaii
No. 4 UCLA @ No. 14 Pacific


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