Penn State, Michigan advance to national semis

For a remarkable fifth time in the last six years, the Penn State women’s volleyball team has advanced to the national semifinals. The Nittany Lions dropped Big Ten rival Minnesota, 3-1, in the regional finals Saturday night. Nebraska wasn’t as lucky, though, as it lost its regional final to Oregon, 3-1. Michigan plays Stanford later tonight.

Penn State 3, Minnesota 1: The No. 1 seed Penn State women’s volleyball team (33-2) advanced to the NCAA Women’s Volleyball National Semifinals with a 3-1 (25-19, 19-25, 26-24, 25-20) win against eighth-seeded Minnesota. The Nittany Lions have advanced to the national semifinals five times in the last six seasons.

The Nittany Lions move on to face No. 5 Oregon in Louisville’s KFC Yum! Center on Thursday in the National Semifinals. Penn State is making its 10th trip to the National Semifinals. Penn State also advanced in 1993, 1994, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. The Lions have won five NCAA titles, including four straight from 2007-2010. Read full recap at GoPSUSports.com.

[NCAA.com: View the official interactive bracket]

Michigan 3, Stanford 1: The University of Michigan volleyball team clinched the program’s first NCAA Final Four appearance with a 20-25, 25-20, 25-20, 25-20 upset win over No. 2 Stanford on Saturday night at Haas Pavilion. The triumph marks U-M’s third NCAA Tournament victory over a top-six ranked Cardinal squad in the past four seasons. Michigan will take on Texas in the national semis at 7 p.m. ET Thursday.

Junior and Berkeley Regional MVP Lexi Erwin led Michigan with 23 kills and made it a double-double with 16 digs. She was one of four Wolverines in double figures in terminations. Read full recap at MGoBlue.com.

Oregon 3, Nebraska 1: The fifth-seeded Oregon Ducks advanced to the first NCAA Semifinals in school history, rallying from a slow start to post a 3-1 victory over the fourth-seeded Nebraska volleyball team in front of 9,382 fans at the CenturyLink Center. The Huskers dominated the first set of the regional final in a 25-15 victory, but the Ducks won the next three sets, 25-22, 25-18 and 25-17.

With the win, Oregon (29-4) advanced to face No. 1 Penn State on Thursday at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Ky. The match will start at either 6 or 8 p.m. (Central) and will be televised live on ESPN2. Nebraska fell just short of its 12th NCAA Semifinal appearance, finishing its season with a 26-7 record. Read full recap at Huskers.com.

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sbuel2 on 12/9/2012 @ 6:11am EST Said:

Michigan defeated Stanford 3-1 and will face Texas in the semi-finals.