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FAMU VOLLEYBALL TO OPEN NCAA TOURNEY SATURDAY AT FSU

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Nov. 29) - The Florida A&M University Women’s
Volleyball team will open its’ quest for a national championship this
coming Saturday, December 5, in the opening round of the 2009 NCAA
Division I Women's Volleyball Championship at Florida State
University’s Tully Gymnasium.
FAMU (17-9), champions of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC)
will be the number two seed in the Tallahassee subregional, and will
face Jacksonville (Ala.) State University (26-7), winners of the Ohio
Valley Conference.
The number two seeding is the highest tournament seed ever for the Lady
Rattlers under the mercurial Tony Trifonov, who has led FAMU to 270
match victories (270-110) and a scintillating 122-3 MEAC mark since
1997.
Host Florida State (28-2), the subregional’s top seed, will host
Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) champion Alabama A&M University
(18-10), in the other opening round bout on Saturday.
Match times will be announced on Monday.
Lady Rattler NCAA History
FAMU, which has won nine straight MEAC titles (2001-09) and 10 of the
last 11 championships, will be making their ninth straight NCAA
appearance this week, and their 10th appearance in the last 11 seasons.
It will be only the second time in their postseason history that they
have played an opening round match in Tallahassee, having hosted a
subregional in 2004 in Gaither Gymnasium, which featured the University
of Florida, Jacksonville (Fla.) University and eventual national
champion, Stanford University.
In 2003, FAMU scored its’ lone opening round match victory, defeating
Winthrop (S.C.) University, 3-1 at Georgia Tech in the Atlanta, Georgia
subregional.
FAMU’s previous nine (9) NCAA appearances took them to Long Beach,
California (1999), Gainesville, Florida (2001), Minneapolis, Minnesota
(2002), Atlanta, Georgia (2003), Tallahassee (2004) and Gainesville,
Florida (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008).
2009 NCAA Tournament Overview
The winner of the Tallahassee subregional will face the winner of the
Lexington, Kentucky subregional in the Sweet 16 (regional semifinals)
in Minneapolis, Minnesota on Friday, December 11.
All four regional final contests on Saturday, December 12 will be
televised live nationally via ESPNU, beginning at 4 p.m. with the
Gainesville regional.
The 2009 NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Final Four will be held in
the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa, Florida, beginning with the national
semifinal matches on Thursday, December 17, followed by the title bout
on Saturday, December 19.
All three of the Final Four contests will be televised live nationally
by ESPN 2 and ESPN 360.com
The top 16 teams were seeded nationally and placed within four regions.
The teams tabbed as the top four seeds were No. 1 Pennsylvania State
University; No. 2 University of Texas at Austin; No. 3 Florida State
University; and No. 4 Stanford University.
The established bracketing principles of non-conference first- and
second-round matchups were followed and team pairings were determined
by geographical proximity.
The Pacific-10 Conference led all conferences with eight teams
selected. The Big Ten Conference and the Big 12 Conference garnered six
teams each in the field while the Atlantic Coast Conference has five
teams in the tournament. Two teams, Penn State and Stanford have earned
bids to all 29 championships. Five teams are making their initial
appearances in the tournament: U.S. Military Academy, Indiana
University-Purdue University, Fort Wayne, Niagara University,
University of Northern Colorado and Texas Christian University.
In the 28-year history of the championship, 10 schools have been
crowned champion, nine of which are in this year's bracket, including
two-time defending champion Penn State.
Additional past winners making the field are Stanford (1992, 94, 96,
97, 2001, 04), University of Hawaii, Manoa (1982, 83, 87), Long Beach
State University (1989, 93, 98), University of California, Los Angeles
(1984, 90, 91), University of Nebraska, Lincoln (1995, 2000, and 06),
University of Southern California (1981, 2002, 03), Penn State (1999,
2007), Texas (1988) and University of Washington (2005).
First- and second-round matches will be played at 16 campus sites.

-Portions of this article appear courtesy of NCAA.com.


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