The AVCA Coaches Poll released this afternoon has almost no variation from last week’s rankings. USC and UCLA are now tied for No. 7, which technically bumps Long Beach State down to No. 9 from their No. 8 spot, and UC San Diego and Ohio State flip flopped their No. 13 and 14 places, but that’s it for switches.
Stanford held off NAIA powerhouse Cal Baptist on Saturday, taking the match in just 3 games. Cal Baptist has given losses to UCLA, Long Beach and Pepperdine so far this season, so the Cardinal proved they have what it takes to hold the number one spot for another week.
Incidentally, the last time Stanford was ranked No. 1 this late in the season was 1997, when they went on to win the national championship.
With spring break, finals and/or dead week in effect across many schools, two of the top 5 teams didn’t play last week. No. 2 Pepperdine and No. 3 Cal State Northridge both had the week off.
But No. 4 BYU played No. 7 USC and came out with a 3-game sweep, a loss that may have been a deciding factor in the Trojans being forced to share the No. 7 spot with UCLA this week. No. 5 Hawaii held on through a 5-game marathon to beat No. 9 Long Beach State.
Despite an amazing upset by No. 13 Ohio State, Penn State remained at its No. 6 spot after jumping three positions last week. The win helped Ohio State jump up a position, passing UC San Diego.
We need to hang on for another week of somewhat anticlimactic action as everybody gets back into their schedules after taking time off, but once April starts we’ll have plenty of top-seeded match ups to cover. The playoffs start April 24th, so keep your eye on Volleyball-Life for all the coverage!