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Michella Chester | NCAA.com | September 29, 2021

Here are 3 must-watch volleyball matchups for Week 6

Must-watch matches in Week 6 of college volleyball

College volleyball has recently been overloaded with upsets and tight matches — and this led to three new teams in this week's Power 10 rankings. 

Wisconsin lost to unranked Maryland, Ohio State was upset by Purdue and Penn State, Washington State upset Washington, and more. This week, we've got some really good ones and have potential for more surprises. Here are my top three matchups to watch in Week 6. 

 No. 5 Wisconsin vs. No. 7 Minnesota | Friday, Oct. 1 at 9 p.m ET on Big Ten Network

Wisconsin vs Minnesota volleyball

This one is by far my favorite of the week. I will be providing live updates and analysis during this match as well on NCAA.com. 

Wisconsin just picked up its first loss of the season to unranked Maryland in five, losing its steady spot at No. 2 and dropping to No. 5. The Badgers were held to a season low .196 hitting despite Dana Rettke putting up 20 kills on .500 hitting. And for one of the best blocking teams, they were out-blocked 15-9. But if you put all of that aside, there is one stat that is huge — the Badgers posted 17 service errors, almost an entire set worth of points, and lost in five. That is extremely uncharacteristic for them. 

So now this is one of the top teams in the nation and they are going to want redemption.

Minnesota on the other hand played Maryland the very next night and handled them swiftly with a clean sweep. The Gophers did exactly the opposite of Wisconsin. They executed their serve and were extremely efficient defensively. Stephanie Samedy, who as we all know has the capability to take over a match, posted just 11 kills and the offense was pretty balanced. Now Wisconsin and Minnesota will face each other. 

The Gophers are on the rise since their three early losses to three top-10 teams. Now they’ve got the Badgers, a top Big Ten opponent to see if the really tough non-conference schedule prepared them for just this. 

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No. 3 Louisville vs. No. 18 Georgia Tech | Sunday, Oct. 3 at 1 p.m. ET on ACCN Extra

Louisville vs Georgia Tech

The Cardinals are currently ranked No. 2 in my Power 10 rankings after I’ve seen them dominate top-ranked opponents this season. But Georgia Tech should be no easy task. The Yellow Jackets are 11-1 on the year and have a big ranked win over Penn State and a loss to a really good UCLA team. The win over Penn State feels even more impressive now that we just watched the Nittany Lions talent on display in a clean sweep over Ohio State. 

The Jackets have two very powerful and efficient hitters in Julia Bergman and Mariana Brambilla who average over four kills per set, but they will be facing one of the toughest blocks in the country. 

The Cardinals are second in the nation in blocks per set, behind Penn State (whom Georgia Tech beat) with 3.23 blocks per set. Amaya Tillman ranks fifth in the nation in that category for the Cards. This Louisville team has got it all though, Anna Debeer and Anna Stevenson offensively, a great setter in Tori Dilfer, Elena Scott in the backcourt, they are the real deal. Now, headed into the ACC they have got a big challenge with Georgia Tech. 

No. 11 Oregon vs. No. 19 Utah | Sunday, Oct. 3 at 2 p.m. ET on Pac-12 Network 

Oregon vs Utah

Here is why I love this matchup — Utah has been hot and cold all season but has some big big upsets over top ranked teams. They’ve got one of the top hitters in the nation in Dani Drews as well, and I love watching them compete in top caliber games. 

Oregon is in the midst of a really impressive season as well. They just broke into my Power 10 rankings but are still right on the outside of the AVCA top 10. They’ve got a win over Penn State and pushed Minnesota to five, but they've had a few close calls with five-set wins over unranked teams. Another ranked win would be just what they need to prove themselves. Brooke Nuneviller leads offensively and is all over the court, but they have a balanced offense as well. 

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