Four NSIC Volleyball Teams Make NCAA Tourney, but Top-Ten Ranked Team Left Out

(NorthernSun.org) – The NSIC will have four teams extend their seasons as Wayne State, Concordia-St. Paul, Minnesota Duluth and St. Cloud State will compete in the NCAA Central Region Tournament. The eight-team region tournament will be held in Wayne, Nebraska on November 18-20. St. Cloud State earned an automatic bid via their NSIC Tournament win, while CSP and UMD and WSC earned at large bids.

CSP has made it into the NCAA Tournament field in all 20 seasons under head coach Brady Starkey and have won 11 Central Region titles during that span. St. Cloud State is making its third straight, and fourth NCAA postseason appearance since 2004 while it’s Wayne State’s 12th NCAA Tournament bid in the program’s history and first since the 2016 season. UMD is making its 23rd NCAA appearance after making the regional 17 of the last 19 seasons.

First Round – Friday, November 18

#1 seed Wayne State (29-2) vs. #8 seed Harding (Ark.) (30-1)

#2 seed Concordia-St. Paul (26-5) vs. #7 seed Nebraska-Kearney (28-5)

#3 seed Minnesota Duluth (26-4) vs. #6 Washburn (24-7)

#4 seed Northwest Missouri State (24-6) vs. #5 St. Cloud State (26-5)

 

Semi Finals – Saturday, November 19

 

Championship Match – Sunday, November 20

The lone GAC team to make the tourney is Harding (8-seed) after winning the conference tourney. SCSU got in via auto-bid after their NSIC Tourney run. Washburn was the other auto-bid recipient after winning the MIAA Tourney. None of those three teams was in the top eight of the final Central Region Rankings. NE-Kearney was ranked 5th in the final rankings & barely got in. SMSU was ranked 6th, Central MO was ranked 7th, and Central OK was 8th, but all were left out. SCSU was 9th and Washburn wasn’t ranked (they dropped out after previous week). Harding sat 10th as the lone GAC team recognized. SMSU was ranked 7th in the nation in last week’s AVCA poll, while Central OK sat 21st. Central MO was receiving votes.