UT Volleyball Heads Into NCAA Division II Quarterfinals Tonight

Published: Dec 12, 2013
The Spartans enter the match with a 32-1 overall record while the Golden Bears own a 32-3 tally for its season.
The Spartans enter the match with a 32-1 overall record while the Golden Bears own a 32-3 tally for its season.
The No. 1 ranked University of Tampa volleyball team will play six-time defending national champion and No. 3 ranked Concordia University, St. Paul in the NCAA Division II quarterfinals Thursday at 6 p.m. EST.

The Spartans enter the match with a 32-1 overall record while the Golden Bears own a 32-3 tally for its season.

The two teams have met 10 times with Concordia owning a 7-3 advantage over UT, with five of the contests being postseason matchups in which the Golden Bears own a 4-1 record against Tampa. CU has edged the Spartans twice in the championship match in 2010 (3-1) and again in 2012 (3-2).

The Spartans met Concordia earlier in the season, as the Golden Bears own the only defeat Tampa has had in its 2013 campaign. CU took the match 3-1 on Sept. 14.

Outside hitter Berkley Whaley will look to continue her successful season against the top offense in the country. The sophomore leads the Spartan attack with 405 kills on the season, swinging at a .308 hitting clip. The transfer posted 256 digs, 76 total blocks and a team-leading 50 service aces as the offensive juggernaut looks to compliment a strong Tampa defense.

Tampa owns the third-ranked blocking corps in the country behind junior Meagan Burke and sophomore Jessica Wagner. The middle blocking tandem has amassed 250 blocks with Wagner possessing a team leading 148 this season. The UT squad averages 2.75 blocks per set and will take on a formidable .340 team attack percentage from Concordia.

The Golden Bears will rely on senior Amanda Konetchy, as the setter has kept the Concordia tempo throughout her four years, maintaining a strong offense for head coach Brady Starkey. Senior right side Kayla Koenecke owns the highest hitting percentage in the nation, grounding 425 kills at a .405 clip.

The quarterfinal matchup will take place at the U.S. Cellular Arena under host institution Upper Iowa University. The match will have a live broadcast through the NCAA website at www.ncaa.com.

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