The Truman State University volleyball team is headed to the NCAA Div. II tournament for the 14th time in school history, as the Bulldogs earned the No. 8 seed in the Midwest region and will begin play on Thursday, Dec. 5 in Allendale, Mich. Truman, who finished the regular season with a 23-11 overall record and a runner-up finish in the Great Lakes Valley Conference tournament, will take on the Midwest's No. 1 seed and weekend host Grand Valley (Mich.) State.
The Lakers carry a 29-3 record into the national tournament and won the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championship on Sunday in five sets against Ashland (Ohio). Match time for the contest has not yet been set. Four programs from each the GLVC and GLIAC were selected for the eight-team Midwest regional, with all four matchups pitting the conferences against each other.
In addition to the Truman/GVSU showdown, No. 2 Ferris (Mich.) State will battle No. 7 Lewis; No. 3 Northwood (Mich.) faces No. 6 Indianapolis, and No. 4 Ashland battles No. 5 Southern Indiana in first-round contests. Head coach Ben Briney's Bulldog squad advances to the NCAA tournament for the fourth time during his five seasons at the helm.
Truman will be making its 14th appearance in the national tournament, having amassed a 23-13 overall record in the postseason.
The Bulldogs look to snap a four-match losing streak in tournament contests dating back to the 2008 national quarterfinals. This will be the second time the Bulldogs and Lakers meet this season, with GVSU having earned a 3-1 victory on Oct. 25 in Aurora, Ill., as part of the GLVC/GLIAC crossover tournament.
Truman and Grand Valley have met once before in postseason play, with the Bulldogs downing the Lakers 3-1 in a 2002 national semifinal match in Canyon, Texas.
Courtesy Truman State University