BYU volleyball: No. 3 BYU finishes regular season in California

By Rachel Hawks

For the Deseret News

Published: Tuesday, April 8 2014 5:20 p.m. MDT

BYU's Taylor Sander spikes the ball past UCSB's Weston Nielsen, Jake Staahl and Jonah Seif during a volleyball match at the Smith Fieldhouse in Provo on Friday, March 28, 2014. BYU won.

Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

No. 3 BYU men’s volleyball finishes the regular season on the road at No. 5 UC Santa Barbara and No. 10 UCLA on Friday and Saturday, respectively. Both matches begin at 7 p.m. PDT.

BYU (18-6, 18-4 MPSF) hosted both opponents two weeks ago, taking down the Gauchos (15-8, 14-8 MPSF) in five sets and the Bruins (16-10, 13-9 MPSF) in four. The Cougars need one more win in conference play to secure the outright Mountain Pacific Sports Federation title.

Senior Taylor Sander leads the Cougars with 4.65 kills per set, good for No. 2 in the nation. Middle blocker Michael Hatch averages 1.42 blocks per set, which is No. 3 in the nation. Helping out are Tyler Heap with 10.78 assists per set and Jaylen Reyes with 1.77 digs per set.

BYU is 34-19 in the overall series against UC Santa Barbara. UCLA leads the series with BYU, 30-26.

Evan Licht averages 3.01 kills per set for the Gauchos. At setter, Jonah Seif averages 10.53 assists per set, while Chad Kingi leads with 2.31 digs per set. Jake Stahl leads in blocks average with 1.28.

On offense, Robart Page leads the Bruins with 3.89 kills per set on a .306 hit clip. Gonzalo Quiroga leads UCLA with .49 aces per set, the fourth most in the nation, and 1.78 digs per set. Setter Steve O’Dell averages 11.21 assists.

Links to live stats are available on the BYU men’s volleyball schedule page. There will be live audio streaming for the UCLA match.

Following the match Saturday, No. 1 seed BYU will host the No. 8 seed (to be determined Saturday) in the quarterfinals of the conference tournament on April 19.

Rachel Hawks is the men's volleyball sports information director for BYU Athletic Communications.

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