Nov. 30, 2008
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - For the fourth time in five years and 10th time in school history, the University of Tennessee volleyball team (22-9) will be participating in the NCAA Tournament. The Lady Volunteers will travel to Clemson, S.C., where they will open the competition against Clemson University (22-9) at Jervey Gym on Fri., Dec. 5. The winner of that match will then take on either Furman (21-13) or 12th-seeded and No. 21 Utah (24-5) the following day for the right to move on to the Seattle Regional.
Times for the matches will be announced on Monday afternoon.
"We are very excited that the selection committee felt that our body of work warranted our selection," UT Head Coach Rob Patrick said. "We are really looking forward to playing close to home. Our fan support has been absolutely terrific this season and they have definitely helped us win a number of matches because of their support on the road.
"We feel like we are playing our best volleyball right now," Patrick said. "Our team has done a great job of creating some momentum going into the tournament by winning 12 of its last 13 matches while playing in a very tough conference. Hopefully, we can carry that momentum over to this weekend."
The Lady Vols' showdown with the Tigers on Friday will mark the sixth meeting between the two schools and the first since the 1988 season when current Clemson Head Coach Jolene Hoover was an assistant under former UT Head Coach Sandy Lynn. Tennessee holds a 4-1 advantage over Clemson in those matches, including four straight victories.
The Lady Vols are one of four teams from the Southeastern Conference in the tournament. Kentucky and Florida will host Michigan and Florida A&M, respectively, while LSU will travel to Los Angeles to take on 14th-seeded UCLA.
The winner of Saturday's match will travel cross-country to compete in the Seattle Regional, set to take place from Dec. 12-13. The regional winners will then advance to the National Semifinals and Final hosted by the University of Nebraska at the Qwest Center in Omaha, Neb., on Dec. 18 and 20, respectively.
The full bracket for the 2008 NCAA Tournament can be found at www.ncaasports.com.