CSU volleyball to open NCAA tournament vs. Purdue

Nov. 25, 2012

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By Craig Buchanan
Athletic Media Relations

FORT COLLINS, Colo. – The Colorado State women’s volleyball team will be competing in its 18th consecutive NCAA tournament, and this year’s road to the Final Four will begin in Tallahassee, Fla. Announced Sunday afternoon on ESPNU, CSU will face the Purdue Boilermakers in the first round of the tournament on Friday.

“They have some very dynamic athletes, and they play in a tough conference,” Head Coach Tom Hilbert said of Purdue. “When you play in the Big Ten, you’re used to battles night in and night out, so they’re going to be very, very ready for the NCAA tournament.”

Completing the other side of CSU’s pod of the regional bracket is Hofstra and No. 9 seed and host Florida State. With a win over Purdue on Friday at 4:30 p.m. ET (2:30 p.m. MT), the Rams will play the winner of the Hofstra-Florida State matchup. That match will be played on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. local time (2:30 p.m. MT).

Purdue (21-10) finished fifth in the Big Ten and is ranked No. 22 in the latest AVCA Coaches Top-25 poll. Florida State (27-3) is ranked No. 12 nationally, while Hofstra (21-13) earned a trip to the NCAA tournament after being crowned Colonial Athletic Association tournament champions on November 18.

CSU earned the Mountain West’s automatic berth after defeating New Mexico Friday night to win its fourth consecutive league title.

“I think it’s a good draw,” Hilbert said. “It’s a hard first-round match, but they’re all good at this point. We’re peaking right now. We’re physically good; we’re healthy. I’ve got an experienced team.”

The Rams have faced off against the Boilermakers just twice in their history, with both matches going into five sets. The Rams defeated Purdue in 1987 in Fort Collins, but lost to the Boilermakers in 2004 when they hosted them in the first round of the NCAA tournament. Colorado State is 1-0 against both Florida State and Hofstra all-time, defeating the Seminoles, 3-1, in the 1988 NCAA tournament to advance to the Sweet 16. The Rams last played Hofstra in 1998.

Overall, CSU is 22-23 in NCAA tournament matches, winning its first-round match each of the last five years, and advancing to the Sweet 16 nine times in the program’s 23 prior trips. CSU’s stretch of 18 consecutive tournament appearances ranks seventh among active streaks nationally.

Ticket information will be available online later this week. Check CSURams.com or with the ticket office at 1-800-491-RAMS for more information. Additional information about how to follow the matches from home will also be available later this week.

Tournament Notes 

  • The Rams have now advanced to 24 NCAA tournaments, including 18 consecutive. Just 10 teams have earned more overall berths than CSU.
  • CSU’s stretch of 18 straight tournament appearances ranks seventh nationally among active streaks. All-time, CSU is 22-23 in the tournament.
  • The Rams are 1-1 all-time against Purdue. Both matches have been played in Fort Collins and went to five sets. The Rams beat the Boilermakers in 1987, but fell to them in the first round of the 2004 NCAA tournament.
  • Overall, the Rams hold a 3-1 record against the three teams in their pod: Florida State, 1-0; Hofstra, 1-0; Purdue, 1-1.
  • CSU has played in Tallahassee just once, defeating Florida State to advance to the Sweet 16 of the 1988 NCAA tournament, 3-1.
  • CSU is 2-2 all-time in NCAA tournament matches played in the state of Florida, including 2-1 in the first round.
  • The Rams are 17-6 in the first round of the NCAA tournament all-time, and has won their first-round match each of the last five seasons.
  • The 2012 senior class, which has amassed 96 total victories in four seasons, is 4-3 in the NCAA tournament, advancing to the Sweet 16 in 2009.
  • Nine of CSU’s 20 opponents from 2012 are represented in the tournament: BYU, New Mexico State, Northern Colorado, Oklahoma, Pepperdine, San Diego State and Tennessee, UCLA and Wichita State. CSU held a 5-5 record against those teams (CSU played San Diego State twice).