GAME PREVIEW: NCAA Volleyball - Regional Semifinals
TAMPA, Fla. – The Florida Gulf Coast University volleyball team faces Florida Southern College in an NCAA Division II South Region semifinal today at 5 p.m. The Eagles are seeded third while the Mocs are the second seed. In other semi-final action, top-seed Tampa hosts against fourth seed and defending national champion Barry at 7:30 p.m.
The Eagles recorded a 3-0 victory over Presbyterian in the first round on Friday. FGCU won by scores of 30-16, 30-18, 30-25 to improve to 26-3 overall. Presbyterian's season finished at 32-5.
FGCU was led by junior middle blocker Ericka Fonseca, who recorded a team high 15 kills and six blocks, while posting a .609 hitting percentage. Senior libero Ingrid Felicio paced the Eagles defense with 11 digs and junior setter Laura Manovill had 23 assists.
Florida Southern began NCAA play with a 3-0 victory over Wingate in the South Regional. The Mocs won by scores of 30-15, 30-16, 30-24 to improve to 33-3 on the season. Wingate finishes its season with a 25-6 record.
Florida Southern was led by Beverly Stasis, who led the Mocs with 10 kills. Danielle Higgenbotham added six blocks as Danielle Durham had 13 digs to lead Florida Southern. Jordan McAfee had 37 assists.
The South Region championship final is scheduled for Sunday, November 20 at 7 p.m. In all, seven eight-team regionals and one seven-team regional will be played at on-campus sites around the country. The regional winners advance to the NCAA Division II championship finals, December 1-3, on the campus of one of the final eight institutions.
Three conference champions – Tampa (Sunshine State), Francis Marion (Peach Belt) and Presbyterian (South Atlantic) received automatic bids in the South. In addition to FGCU, the other at-large selections included Florida Southern, Barry, Rollins and Wingate. The Eagles were the only independent team selected for the tournament.
When: Saturday, November 19 (5 p.m.) at University of Tampa
Where: Tampa, Fla. (Martinez Center)
Radio/Web: Live Web cast: FGCU vs. Florida Southern
Admission: Tickets for the event are $7 for adults and $5 for students and senior citizens. Children under the age of five are admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.
FGCU’s Record: 26-3
Florida Southern Record: 33-3
All-time Series: Florida Southern leads 1-0.
Florida Gulf Coast Notables: FGCU is making its second straight appearance in the NCAA tournament...Last fall the sixth seeded Eagles upset third seeded Tampa in the first round before falling to second seed North Florida in the semifinals...The Eagles have been ranked No. 25 in the past two AVCA Division II national polls...FGCU boasted a 16-match winning streak before falling at Division I North Florida in the regular season finale...Two Eagles earned Daktronics All-South Region honors on Thursday...Sophomore libero Whitney Hendry was named to the first-team while junior middle blocker Ericka Fonseca was a second-team selection...Hendry will now be eligible for the Daktronics Division II All-American team that will be announced in December…The Eagles posted a 6-2 record against NCAA Division II tournament qualifiers this fall, including a 3-1 win at Barry in September, a 3-0 shutout of Francis Marion in the Armstrong Atlantic Pirate Classic in September and a pair of wins over Presbyterian.
Florida Southern Notables: Three Florida Southern volleyball players are members of the 2005 Daktronics All-South Region Team selected by the region's sports information directors...Beverly Stasis and Rachelle Konczal are members of the first-team and Jordan McAfee is a second-team selection...Stasis and Konczal will be on the ballot for the Daktronics Division II All-America Team that will be announced next month...The Moccasins and the Eagles did not meet during the regular season...FSC won a five-game match last season at Jenkins Field House.