INDIANAPOLIS – The Gallaudet University women’s volleyball team is making a return trip to the NCAA tournament and will travel to Newport News, Va., for the second year in a row to play in the 2011 NCAA Division III tournament on Friday, November 11. The Bison drew a familiar foe in Salisbury University, a former rival in the Capital Athletic Conference (CAC), in their first round match at Christopher Newport University. The Bison were one of the 64 teams that made the field as announced by the selection committee on Monday. The game time for Friday will be announced later today.
Gallaudet (28-7) earned an automatic bid into the NCAA tournament after the Bison defeated Penn St.-Berks, 3-2 on Saturday, in the North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) championship on the road. The Bison will make their second straight NCAA tournament appearance and eighth overall. The Bison are 3-7 all-time in the NCAA tournament. This is Gallaudet’s fourth appearance in the NCAA tournament under the guidance of Head Coach Lynn Ray Boren, now in his seventh season.
Salisbury (31-3), ranked No. 3 in the Mid-Atlantic region, won the CAC title with a 3-0 win over Stevenson University, ranked fourth in the Mid-Atlantic region, last Saturday at home. Salisbury is making its seventh NCAA tournament appearance, its first since 2009, where the Sea Gulls are 3-6 in tournament play. Gallaudet and Salisbury are two of the 42 conference champions that were awarded automatic bids into the 2011 championship field.
The Sea Gulls hold a 27-26 lead in the all-time series with Gallaudet dating back to 1981. Salisbury has won the past five meetings, four by shutout, most recently last year on September 18 in Salisbury, Md. Gallaudet last defeated Salisbury, 3-2, on October 18, 2007, on the road.
The winner of the Gallaudet-Salisbury game will face the winner between Maryville (Tenn.) College (26-7) and the host Captains of Christopher Newport University (33-4). CNU, ranked No. 7 in the nation and third in the South region, won the USA South Athletic Conference championship for a fifth time in a row. The Captains are one of the eight regional hosts. CNU is making its fifth straight appearance in the NCAA tournament and ninth overall. Maryville won the Great South Athletic Conference championship and will make its 10th NCAA tournament appearance in program history.
The rest of the CNU regional consist of Randolph-Macon (23-5) going up against Johns Hopkins University (25-4) and Emory (34-4) playing The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey (25-8). Randolph-Macon, the three-time reigning Old Dominion Athletic Conference champions, will face Johns Hopkins, the Centennial Conference champs, in the first round. The Yellow Jackets are making their third appearance in the NCAA tournament while the Blue Jays are making their first-ever appearance. Emory, the No. 2 ranked team in the country and top team in the South region, received a Pool C berth and is making its 17th appearance (16 straight) in the NCAA tournament where they are 27-16. Emory won the 2008 national championship and were the national runner-up last season. Richard Stockton captured its fourth straight New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) title and is making its fourth consecutive appearance in the NCAA tournament and seventh in program history.
Of the seven teams that were in the 2010 NCAA regional at CNU four return in Gallaudet, Randolph-Macon, Richard Stockton and the host Captains.
The CNU regional will be held from November 11-13. The winner of the regional will advance to the women's volleyball championship finals hosted by Washington University in St. Louis, Mo., on November 18-20.
2011 NCAA Division III Women's Volleyball Championship