BYU begins postseason at Stanford
PROVO, Utah — BYU men’s volleyball begins postseason play as a five seed at four-seed Stanford in the MPSF quarterfinals this Saturday. If the Cougars win, they advance to the semifinals at Pepperdine on Apr. 18.
BYU (12-11, 6-6 MPSF)
The Cougars are coming off a loss at Grand Canyon last week to close the regular season. Davide Gardini reached a new career high of 26 kills in the match and freshman Brody Earnest put up 57 assists, the most of any BYU player this season.
BYU blocked 12 attack attempts against GCU, marking the sixth time this season the team has had 12-or-more blocks. They currently rank fourth in the nation and first in the MPSF in blocks per set with a 2.53 average.
BYU enters the MPSF tournament as reigning conference champions, having defeated UCLA last year in the championship match. The Cougars have to win three consecutive matches to repeat as the best in the MPSF.
Stanford (15-10, 6-6 MPSF)
The Cardinal closed the regular season with a sweep over Grand Canyon to tie with the Cougars in the MPSF standings. Stanford owns the head-to-head set tiebreaker 5-4 against BYU, thus claiming the four seed.
BYU leads the all-time series over Stanford 37-22 and has 17-12 advantage on the road. The Cardinal was swept in the first round of the past two MPSF tournaments, including a loss to the Cougars in Provo two years ago.
Stanford is second in the MPSF in assists at 12.14 per set, and third in kills at 12.77 per set. Individually, junior middle blocker Kyler Presho leads the conference in hitting percentage at .468, junior setter Paul Bischoff is second in assists at 10.27 per set and sophomore opposite hitter Jaylen Jasper is third in kills with 3.73 per set.
After a road series against UC Irvine, the Cougars (5-1) moved up to No. 11 in this week’s AVCA coaches poll. BYU split…