Volleyball unveils another loaded schedule
By HEATHER KENNEDY
GREELEY -- Northern Colorado Volleyball has brought in to Butler-Hancock Sports Pavilion some of the top teams in the country the past several seasons, and that trend will continue in 2013 with matches scheduled against Baylor from the Big 12 (Aug. 31) and Texas A&M from the SEC (Sept. 22).
Bears coach Lyndsey Oates unveiled her 2013 slate Tuesday, and it includes 13 home matches and top-notch road contests against Creighton (Sept. 6), Pac-12 Cal (Sept. 7), and SEC Arkansas (Sept. 14).
Northern Colorado's season will begin Aug. 30 when it hosts Cal Poly at 7 p.m. in a combination format event with Colorado State, and then the Bears will follow up with their match against Baylor. Northern Colorado will then play at Colorado State on Sept. 3 before traveling to play in Creighton's Bluejay Invitational (Sept. 6 to 7) and in Tulsa's Golden Hurricane Classic (Sept. 13 to 14).
In all, the Bears will face six teams that advanced to last year's NCAA Tournament (Arkansas, Cal, Colorado State, Creighton, Texas A&M and Tulsa).
"We are pleased with how the schedule worked out this fall," Oates said. "It will be difficult enough to challenge us and prepare us for another run at the NCAA Tournament, while allowing some success to build confidence after losing several veteran players.
"We are excited to host Cal Poly, Baylor and Texas A&M on our home court. We have had some excellent matches in the last two years similar to these (Georgia in 2011 and Oklahoma in 2012) that have been great for fans."
The Bears' defense of their 2012 Big Sky Conference Championship title begins Sept. 20 at Montana, and their first home conference match will come Sept. 26 against Idaho State. Northern Colorado is hoping to win the conference tournament and advance to the NCAA Tournament for the fourth time in five seasons.
"We expect the conference to be tough again this year, and every match will count," Oates said. "We would love to bring the Big Sky Championship back to Greeley next year (2014) by winning the regular season this year."
The Bears return six letterwinners from last year's squad that went 24-11 and won the Big Sky Conference Championship to advance to the NCAA Tournament in Eugene, Ore.
2013 NORTHERN COLORADO VOLLEYBALL SEASON TICKETS ARE NOW AVAILABLE
Don't miss out on great Northern Colorado Volleyball action this fall by getting your season tickets now and avoiding the rush on match night.
Adult season tickets are $90, while faculty/staff and senior tickets are $55, and youth tickets are $25. Fans can also purchase a Family Pack, which includes two adult and three youth tickets for just $150.
Several courtside tables are also available for $400 for the season and include seating for four with food and beverages included.
For more ticket information call the Northern Colorado Ticket Office at 970-351-4849 or visit www.unco.edu/tickets/