Eight NCAA Teams, Two Top 25 Clubs Highlight 2012 NDSU Volleyball Schedule
Release: June 22, 2012
FARGO, N.D. - Eight matches against NCAA tournament teams including two matches against top-25 opponents highlight the 31-match North Dakota State women's volleyball schedule head coach Kari Thompson announced Friday, June 22.
North Dakota State will play 10 regular-season home matches and will have the opportunity to play in the Summit League tournament on its home floor for the third time in four seasons. The four-team championship is Nov. 16-17 with the winner advancing to the NCAA tournament.
New to the schedule, NDSU has three non-conference matches during the week between the Summit League and NCAA tournaments. The Bison play Nov. 20 at sixth-ranked Pepperdine, a regional finalist last year, and travels to Tulsa to play Nov. 23 against Northwestern State and Tulsa, an NCAA second round team last year.
"Our first goal is to win The Summit League," Thompson said, "but if we have the opportunity to advance, those will be three very competitive matches to get ready for postseason volleyball. It makes sense for us to get out of our gym and be playing while other conferences are still finishing their schedules."
North Dakota State opens with tournaments at Northern Illinois, Northern Colorado and Wisconsin, and has a non-conference match at 15th-ranked Minnesota on Sept. 10. Summit League play begins Sept. 15-16 at Nebraska Omaha and South Dakota State.
The home openers are Sept. 21-22 against Western Illinois and IUPUI, and the Bison have a five-match homestand in October that includes South Dakota and UMKC (Oct. 5-6), North Dakota (Oct. 9), Nebraska Omaha (Oct. 13) and Drake (Oct. 15).
Other home matches are Oct. 26-27 with IPFW and Oakland and Nov. 9 against South Dakota State.
North Dakota State, which was 42nd in last year's final NCAA Rating Percentage Index, will play 12 teams who were in the top 100 in the final RPI. The Bison went 26-9 overall, won The Summit League with a 16-2 record, and advanced to their third NCAA tournament in four seasons.
"I am so proud of our past accomplishments," Thompson said. "We have a motivated and talented group of student-athletes, and this is another challenging schedule that will help us continue to grow the program."