Washington State’s volleyball program is headed to its sixth straight NCAA Tournament the association announced on Sunday afternoon. The Cougars (19-11, 13-7) will be headed to the Waco, Texas regional and will face Northern Colorado (24-6, 13-3) in the first round.
Northern Colorado punched its ticket into the NCAA tournament with a five set victory against Weber State in the Big Sky conference tournament. It’s the sixth conference tournament title in history for the Bears.
As a club, NCU is hitting .228 on the season and has heavily relied on its defense to win matches — opponents are hitting .177. The Bears’ defense has particularly been successful at digs which prevent opponents from scoring. But the blocking leaves much to be desired as Northern Colorado averaged 1.91 blocks per set while the opponents average 2.44 blocks per set.
The big question for Washington State is going to be whether or not Pia Timmer is healthy enough to go. Timmer’s injury against California on Nov. 11th hampered WSU’s offensive attack down the stretch; and the Cougars went 3-3 din her absence (including the Cal match). If she’s healthy enough to play, then the Cougars have the defense and offensive attack to make a deep run in the tournament. But if she’s not, then the defense is going to have to carry the team…which it’s done a magnificent job of so far.
This is the second time that these two programs have met. The first time was back on August 25th, 2007 in Pullman, Wash. and WSU won in four sets.
Date: December 2nd, 2021
Location: Ferrell Center in Waco, Texas
Time: 2:30 PM
The winner of this match will face the victor of the Baylor/ Texas A&M – Corpus Christi (the Islanders) match on December 3rd. Here’s what the bottom left portion of the bracket looks like.