CMS Volleyball Faces Top-Seed Wisconsin-Oshkosh in NCAA Quarterfinals Wednesday at Roberts Pavilion
CLAREMONT, Calif. - The Claremont-Mudd-Scripps women's volleyball team will serve as the host for the NCAA Division III Championships next week, opening play on Wednesday, Nov. 29 at 7 p.m. in the fourth quarterfinal match against top-seeded Wisconsin-Oshkosh.
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The winner of the CMS vs. Wisconsin-Oshkosh match will advance to play the winner between Hope and Johns Hopkins on Thursday night at 7:30 p.m. After a day off, the two semifinal winners will meet for the national championship on Saturday, Dec. 2 at 4 p.m.
CMS earned the right to host the 2023 NCAA Championships three years ago through a bid process. The Athenas have known for the past three years that they would have the chance to play for a title on its home floor this season if they could advance, and accomplished that mission by earning the SCIAC's automatic bid with a conference title and then winning the regionals last weekend at MIT. CMS swept all three of its matches convincingly at regionals over UMass-Dartmouth, Salisbury and MIT with only one set closer than 25-20 (a 25-22 win over Salisbury in the second set).
Georgia McGovern, who ranks second on the CMS single-season assist list with 1105 heading into nationals, was named the Most Outstanding Player of both the SCIAC Tournament and the NCAA Regionals. She was joined on the All-NCAA Regional team by Jenna Holmes, who hit .478 over the three matches (39-6-69) and libero Dede Carranza, who tallied 41 digs.
Wisconsin-Oshkosh (37-1) is ranked No. 2 in the nation by the AVCA, behind only defending national champion in Juniata, but the Titans earned the top seed at nationals after the eight regional champions were re-seeded. CMS will be the No. 8 seed, coming into nationals with a 25-5 record. This year's nationals field is so loaded (all eight teams are ranked in the top 11 nationally), that the gaudy 25-5 record for the Athenas is actually the highest loss total of any of the eight teams.
Juniata earned the No. 2 seed with its 32-0 record and will face No. 7 Trinity (Texas) on Wednesday at 2 p.m. in rematch of last year's national finals, which Juniata won in four sets. Trinity came to CMS for the regionals last year and outlasted the Athenas in five sets (16-14 in the fifth), which was the only defeat for CMS after coming into the match with a 30-0 record.
The quarterfinal round will get started with No. 3 NYU facing No. 6 University of Northwestern. NYU competed at Roberts Pavilion last year at the Pacific Coast Classic (CMS won the head-to-head battle 3-0, winning the third set 29-27). Northwestern got through to nationals this year by fighting off seven match points to come back and defeat Wisconsin-Whitewater in five sets at its regional final at Cornell College in Iowa.
CMS will be trying for its second national championship in program history, after taking the 2017 title. The Athenas are making their fourth appearance at nationals, reaching the quarterfinals in 2014 and the semifinals in 2021, in addition to their national title. The 1993 team also advanced to the NCAA Quarterfinals, but nationals were only a four-team event in that era and the Athenas fell in the regional finals to UC San Diego.
Wisconsin-Oshkosh also visited Roberts Pavilion two years ago to compete in the 2021 Pacific Coast Classic, with CMS winning the head-to-head battle 26-24, 19-25, 25-12, 25-20. Most of the CMS core players competed in that match, with Brenna Bell tallying 15 kills, Jenna Holmes adding 10 and Georgia McGovern tallying 32 assists and nine digs. Riley Kindt tied for match-high honors with 16 kills for the Titans, while Kalli Mau had 29 assists and 10 digs.
For complete tournament information, visit the following link: NCAA Championship Home Page