For the third consecutive season, the Wesleyan volleyball team (19-3, 9-1 NESCAC) secured the No. 2 seed in the NESCAC Tournament and will play seventh-seeded Bates (16-9, 4-6 NESCAC) in a rematch of last year's quarterfinals. The match is scheduled for Friday, November 8 at 5 p.m. Tufts earned the top seed and will host the three-day tournament with the championship scheduled for Sunday, November 10 at 12 p.m.
The Cardinals' nine conference wins tie a program record that was set in 2001 and matched again in 2018, while the team's 19-3 overall mark matches its best start since '01. Wesleyan is making its fourth straight trip to the NESCAC Tournament and its 15th overall. The Cardinals are 8-14 in postseason play and 4-2 under fifth-year Head Coach Ben Somera, which includes the program's first-ever championship title (2017).
Bates is makings its 12th overall trip to the conference tournament and is 8-11 overall. Bates won the first four NESCAC Championships from 1990-1993, but has not won since. The four conference titles are third-most in the league.
Wesleyan has won three-straight against the Bobcats including a 3-1 win on the road this fall and a 3-0 victory in the NESCAC Quarterfinals a year ago. Last season's matchup was the first between Wesleyan and Bates in postseason play since 2002 and fourth overall. They are 2-2 against each other in the NESCAC Championships while the Bobcats hold a 29-15 lead in the all-time series.
AT A GLANCE: WESLEYAN
- The Cardinals claimed the No. 3 spot in the most recent New England regional rankings, which were released on October 29.
- As a team, they lead the NESCAC in digs per set (20.13), rank second in kills (13.44) and assists (12.47) per set, and are third in points per set (16.9).
- Wesleyan has four All-Americans on its squad; Phia Bellizzi, Nicole Hilton, Stasie Litinsky, and Kaira Muraoka-Robertson.
- Bellizzi, the team's libero, ranks 11th in the country and first in the NESCAC in digs per set (6.18) while also leading the league in total digs (457).
- Muraoka-Robertson is averaging a conference-best 8.81 assists per set while also recording 3.13 digs per set.
- Mia Hogan and Hilton rank sixth and eighth in the conference in kills per set, respectively, averaging 3.07 and 2.96. Hilton is also second in points (3.8) and fourth in blocks (0.91) per set, while her .341 hitting percentage is sixth-best.
- Wesleyan is 3-0 in neutral site contests this season.
2019 NESCAC WOMEN'S VOLLEYBALL CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE
Friday, November 8 – Sunday, November 10
hosted by Tufts
Quarterfinals - Friday, November 8
No. 8 Hamilton at No. 1 Tufts – 5 p.m. (Court 1) l Video
No. 7 Bates vs. No. 2 Wesleyan – 5 p.m. (Court 2) l Video
No. 6 Williams vs. No. 3 Bowdoin – 7:30 p.m. (Court 1) l Video
No. 5 Middlebury vs. No. 4 Amherst – 7:30 p.m. (Court 2) l Video
Semifinals - Saturday, November 9
Winner of 4/5 vs. Winner of 1/8 - 1 p.m. l Video
Winner of 3/6 vs. Winner of 2/7 - 3:30 p.m. l Video
Championship - Sunday, November 10
Semifinal Winners - 12 p.m. l Video