Marquette Announces 2014 Volleyball Schedule
May 14, 2014
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MILWAUKEE – First-year head coach Ryan Theis has announced the Marquette University women’s volleyball fall schedule for the 2014 campaign.
The Golden Eagles are coming off their second NCAA Championship Second Round appearance in three seasons and return five of six starters, including Meghan Niemann and Autumn Bailey, both AVCA All-America Honorable Mention performers in 2013. MU will look to defend its BIG EAST Conference regular season and tournament championships with its sights set on a fourth-straight trip to the NCAA tournament.
Marquette begins its season on Aug. 30-31 at the Rams Volleyball Classic, hosted by perennial NCAA tournament team Colorado State, in Fort Collins, Colo. The Golden Eagles will face UC-Santa Barbara and Virginia Commonwealth on Saturday and will close out action against the host Rams on Sunday. Colorado State posted the top winning percentage in NCAA Division I last season at .933 (28-2) and was the nation’s last remaining unbeaten team after winning its first 27 matches of the season.
The Golden Eagles will head to American University over the weekend of Sept. 5-6 for matches against the Eagles and Florida State. Both squads made surprising runs to the Sweet 16 in 2013 as American upset 16th-seeded Duke in Durham, N.C., while the Seminoles toppled fifth-seeded Florida before falling to eventual national runner-up Wisconsin in the regional semifinal.
Marquette will host its first home matches of the season when the squad welcomes James Madison, Rice, Green Bay and UT-San Antonio to the Al McGuire Center for the Marquette Invitational on Sept. 12-13. The Golden Eagles will kick things off on Friday, Sept. 12 with James Madison at 11 a.m., followed by a match with Rice at 7 p.m. CT.
Action gets underway an hour later the following day with matches against Green Bay at noon and UTSA at 8 p.m.
After hosting the then-No. 3 Florida Gators last season at the Al McGuire Center, the Golden Eagles travel to the Sunshine State for three matches. MU will face Florida on Friday, Sept. 19 at 6 p.m. CT and Jacksonville on Sunday, Sept. 21 in Gainesville, separated by a Saturday showdown with the University of Central Florida in Orlando.
Theis spent two seasons at Florida (2006-07) as offensive and recruiting coordinator under head coach Mary Wise and helped the Gators compile an overall record of 59-6 and advance to the NCAA regional semifinals.
The Golden Eagles are slated to defend their 2013 BIG EAST Conference regular season title on Friday, Sept. 26 at Providence in the first-ever conference matchup between squads. The Friars have played as a Division I Independent and member of America East since leaving the BIG EAST in 2001 for volleyball, but will make their return in 2014.
After a match at St. John’s on Saturday, Sept. 27, Marquette will host its first conference games of the year on Oct. 3-4 against Georgetown and Creighton, respectively. MU’s BIG EAST home opener will mark just the second home weekend of the year at the Al McGuire Center.
The following week-and-a-half will see the Golden Eagles make a pair of mid-week trips to travel partners Xavier (Wednesday, Oct. 8) and Butler (Wednesday, Oct. 15), separated by a match at DePaul on Saturday, Oct. 11.
Marquette hosts Villanova and Seton Hall on Sept. 17-18 and will travel to Creighton and Georgetown on Oct. 24-26. Halloween Weekend will be spent at the Al McGuire Center with matches against Butler on Halloween and Xavier on All Saints Day.
The Golden Eagles will head to Theis’ alma mater, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, for a Tuesday, Nov. 4 contest at the Klotsche Center. MU swept its crosstown foe 25-15, 25-17, 25-14 last season in the finale of the Marquette Invitational, in which right-side hitter Lindsey Gosh led the Golden Eagles with 13 kills and a career-best six service aces.
Marquette closes out the month of November with home matches against St. John’s, Providence and DePaul on Senior Night (Saturday, Nov. 22) and a road trip to Seton Hall and Villanova (Nov. 14-15).
The 2014 BIG EAST Women’s Volleyball Championship is slated to be held Nov. 28-29 at a site yet to be determined.