SMSU VOLLEYBALL: NCAA Central Region Tournament Central; SMSU prepares to host three-day tournament

MARSHALL – Southwest Minnesota State University will serve as the proud host of the NCAA Division II Central Region Tournament this Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the PE Gym on the campus of SMSU.

The eight-team region tournament will have four quarterfinal matches on Thursday, a pair of semifinal matches on Friday night, with the championship match set for Saturday afternoon.

Ticket prices for the tournament are $8 for adult general admission, $5 for student general admission, while children 5-and-under are free. All tickets will be sold at the door.

For more information, go to official tournament website at SMSUmustangs.com/NCAAVB.

The winner of the tournament will advance to the Division II Elite Eight held on Dec. 7-9 in Pensacola, Florida, on the campus of the University of West Florida.

The tournament begins on Thursday at 12 p.m. with No. 2 seed Concordia-St. Paul facing No. 7 seed Central Oklahoma. At 2:30 p.m., No. 3 seed Nebraska-Kearney will battle No. 6 seed Missouri Western. The 5 p.m. match as No. 4 seed Northern State taking on No. 5 Minnesota Duluth, while the quarterfinals conclude at 7:30 p.m. with No. 1 seed Southwest Minnesota State facing No. 8 seed Arkansas Tech.

Southwest Minnesota State (28-3), ranked No. 2 in the latest AVCA Top 25 poll released on Monday, will be making its 14th straight NCAA tournament appearance and 15th overall in program history. SMSU last hosted the Central Region Tournament in 2010.

2017 NCAA

Division II Central Region Tournament

Quarterfinals – Thursday, November 30

12 p.m. – Quarterfinal 1: No. 7 Central Oklahoma (29-5) vs. No. 2 Concordia St. Paul (28-3).

2:30 p.m. – Quarterfinal 2: No. 6 Missouri Western (24-10) vs. No. 3 Nebraska-Kearney (33-3).

5 p.m. – Quarterfinal 3: No. 5 Minnesota Duluth (24-6) vs. No. 4 Northern State (23-6).

7:30 p.m. – Quarterfinal 4: No. 8 Arkansas Tech (35-0) vs. No. 1 Southwest Minnesota State (28-3).

Semifinals – Friday, December 1

5 p.m. – Semifinal 1: Q1 winner vs. Q2 winner.

7:30 p.m. – Semifinal 2: Q3 winner vs. Q4 winner.

Championship – Saturday, December 2

3 p.m. – Semifinal 1 winner vs. Semifinal 2 winner.

Team Quick Facts

No. 1 Southwest Minnesota State

Head Coach: Terry Culhane, 14th season Record at SMSU: 368-96

2017 Record: 28-3

2017 Conference Record/Finish: 17-3/2nd NSIC

AVCA National Ranking (Nov. 20): No. 2

Years in NCAA Tournament: 15

(2001-04-05-06-07-08-09-10-11-12-13-14-15-16-17)

NCAA Tournament Record: 16-14

NCAA Region Championships: 1

Last NCAA Region Championships: 2014

No. 2 Concordia-St. Paul

Head Coach: Brady Starkey, 15th season Record at CSP: 493-49

2017 Record: 28-3

2017 Conference Record/Finish: 19-1/1st NSIC

AVCA National Ranking (Nov. 20): No. 3

Years in NCAA Tournament: 15

(2003-04-05-06-07-08-09-10-11-12-13-14-15-16-17)

NCAA Tournament Record: 61-6

NCAA Region Championships: 10

Last Region Championship: 2016

NCAA Championships: 8 (2007-08-09-10-11-12-13-16)

No. 3 Nebraska-Kearney

Head Coach: Rick Squiers, 19th season Record at UNK: 604-84

2017 Record: 33-3

2017 Conference Record/Finish: 16-2/1st MIAA

AVCA National Ranking (Nov. 20): No. 6

Years in NCAA Tournament: 22

(1994-95-96-99-2000-01-02-03-04-05-06-07-08-09-10-11-12-13-14-15-16-17)

NCAA Tournament Record: 27-21

NCAA Region Championships: 5

Last Region Championship: 2005

No. 4 Northern State

Head Coach: Brent Aldridge, 7th season Record at NSU: 137-65

2017 Record: 23-6

2017 Conference Record/Finish: 16-4/3rd NSIC

AVCA National Ranking (Nov. 20): No. 11

Years in NCAA Tournament: 2

(2013-17)

NCAA Tournament Record: 0-1

No. 5 Minnesota Duluth

Head Coach: Jim Boos, 16th season Record at UMD: 435-80

2017 Record: 23-5

2017 Conference Record/Finish: 24-6/3rd NSIC

AVCA National Ranking (Nov. 20): No. 7

Years in NCAA Tournament: 20

(1986-87-91-94-98-2002-03-04-05-06-07-08-09-10-11-12-13-14-16-17)

NCAA Tournament Record: 22-19

NCAA Region Championships: 2

Last Region Championship: 2006

No. 6 Missouri Western State

Head Coach: Marian Carbin, 5th season Record at MWSU: 100-58

2017 Record: 24-10

2017 Conference Record/Finish: 16-2/1st MIAA

AVCA National Ranking (Nov. 20): RV

Years in NCAA Tournament: 3

(1995-2000-17)

NCAA Tournament Record: 0-2

No. 7 Central

Oklahoma

Head Coach: Edgar Miraku, 6th season Record at UCO: 155-47

2017 Record: 29-5

2017 Conference Record/Finish: 15-3/3rd MIAA

AVCA National Ranking (Nov. 20): No. 15

Years in NCAA Tournament: 6

(1994, 2002-05-07-15-17)

NCAA Tournament Record: 3-5

No. 8 Arkansas Tech

Head Coach: Kristy Bayer, 14th season Record at ATU: 365-132

2017 Record: 35-0

2017 Conference Record/Finish: 16-0/1st GAC

AVCA National Ranking (Nov. 20): No. 8

Years in NCAA Tournament: 5

(2000-11-13-14-17)

NCAA Tournament Record: 1-4

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