RCW: Sport Spotlight 4.13 (Volleyball)
— Kansas Volleyball (@KUVolleyball) November 25, 2017
A post shared by Kansas Volleyball (@kuvolleyball) on Nov 25, 2017 at 7:15am PST
This weekend, Kansas volleyball will build upon its program record for consecutive appearances in the NCAA Tournament. The 19th-ranked Jayhawks appear in the 64-team bracket for the sixth-straight season and will face former conference rival Missouri in the first round on Friday in Wichita.
Kansas and Missouri will meet for the 87th time in program history and for the second-straight time during NCAA Tournament play. The last time the former rivals met, Kansas swept Missouri in the second round of the 2015 tourney. It also marks the first time since a 1985 Big Eight Tournament match in Kansas City that KU and Mizzou have played one another at a neutral site.
No. 19 Kansas is the highest-ranked team in the AVCA Coaches Poll among the four teams playing the first and second rounds in Wichita this weekend — KU, Mizzou, Wichita State and Radford. The Jayhawks have been ranked in the top-25 for 45-straight weeks entering postseason play. No. 20 Wichita State has the highest NCAA Tournament seed (No. 16) and is hosting the opening rounds for the first time in program history.
The Jayhawks and Shockers have split the last two series meetings — both NCAA Tournament first-round matches in Lawrence. After an undefeated conference season in the American Athletic Conference, Wichita State enters postseason play on a 20-match winning streak. WSU’s last loss came at the hands of Iowa State on Sept. 17.
Big South champion Radford, hailing from Radford, Virginia, has not met Kansas, Wichita State nor Missouri on the volleyball court in program history.
Much like KU’s magical tourney run to the Final Four in 2015, the overall No. 1 seed is in KU’s region this season as well — Big Ten champion Penn State. In 2015, KU secured a berth in the 2015 Final Four after defeating top-ranked USC in the San Diego Regional Final. The Jayhawks and Nittany Lions feature the nation’s only two players who have earned AVCA All-American First Team honors in both 2015 and 2016 — KU’s Kelsie Payne and Penn State’s Haleigh Washington.
Kansas is 5-2 in its last seven NCAA Tournament matches, and hopes to continue that success Friday evening in Wichita. View KU’s schedule for the latest ticket information and live coverage information throughout the tournament.