April 2, 2013
2013 OHIO VOLLEYBALL SCHEDULE
ATHENS, Ohio - The Ohio University volleyball team announced its 2013 schedule Tuesday, which features seven matches against 2012 NCAA Tournament teams and 13 contests with top-100 RPI squads.
The Bobcats will begin the season with four challenging non-conference tournaments, before opening the 16-game MAC slate in late September.
Five of Ohio's non-conference opponents won at least one game in the 2012 NCAA Tournament, while two foes advanced to the 2012 Final Four.
"We are excited for another tough pre-season and the always challenging MAC season of play," head coach Ryan Theis said. "We have matchups against several Top 25 teams and Top 50 RPI teams on the slate."
Ohio kicks off the 2013 campaign in Eugene, Oregon, where the Bobcats open with a three-match tournament. After starting the season vs. Bryant University on Aug. 30, the Green and White will take on Eastern Washington and No. 2 Oregon on Aug. 31. The Ducks advanced to the NCAA Championship title game last season, where they fell to national champion Texas.
From there, the Bobcats return home to host a two-day tournament in Athens. Ohio will face Cincinnati and North Carolina on Sept. 6 and take on No. 19 Dayton on Sept. 7. Both the Tar Heels and the Flyers advanced to the second round of the 2012 NCAA Tournament.
Ohio will play three matches in Bowling Green, Ky., Sept. 13-14, starting with the UNLV Running Rebels, who finished third in the Mountain West last season. The Bobcats then take on No. 21 Western Kentucky and ACC foe Virginia on Sept. 14. The host Hilltoppers advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament last season.
The Bobcats wrap up non-conference competition with a three-match tournament in Ann Arbor, Mich., Sept. 20-21. Ohio tangles with ACC opponent Maryland and regional rival Marshall, before taking on No. 5 Michigan, which fell to national champion Texas in last season's NCAA national semifinals.
"Our young team gained a lot of experience last year and will have to battle this pre-season to get some wins," Theis said. "We will enjoy and embrace the challenge. " Ohio opens MAC play with a two-match road swing at Buffalo (Sept. 27) and Akron (Sept. 28).
The Bobcats make their home conference debut on Oct. 4 against rival Miami and battle Bowling Green on Oct. 5.
After traveling to Kent State (Oct. 10) and Eastern Michigan (Oct. 12), Ohio returns home for matchups with MAC West foes Toledo (Oct. 18) and Ball State (Oct. 19).
The Bobcats continue play against the MAC West with a two-match road swing against the top two teams from the division last season - Northern Illinois (Oct. 25) and Western Michigan (Oct. 26). Ohio then opens November with East Division contests against Akron (Nov. 1) and Buffalo (Nov. 2) in Athens.
After road tests at Bowling Green and Miami, the Bobcats wrap up the MAC regular season at home vs. Kent State (Nov. 14) and Central Michigan (Nov. 16).
The 2013 MAC Tournament gets underway on Nov. 22 at the SPIRE Sports Complex in Geneva, Ohio. The Bobcats will look to capture their fourth tournament title in the past six years.
Following the MAC Championship, the Bobcats finish the regular season slate with a trip to Richmond, Va., to take on Atlantic 10 power Virginia Commonwealth. The Rams were 25-6 last season and finished third in the A-10 standings.
Ohio has proved to be one of the Midwest's most consistent programs over the better part of a decade, and the Bobcats will look to continue that perennial success this season.
The Green & White have qualified for the NCAA Tournament eight of the past 10 years and have won a first round game on four occasions, including two of the last four seasons. Ohio's best postseason performance came in 2005, when it reached the Sweet 16.
The Bobcats return 11 of 15 student-athletes from a season ago, including four of the five players who saw action in all 110 sets in 2012.
-- GO BOBCATS! --