ATTLEBORO, Mass. – The New England Collegiate Conference (NECC) announced on Saturday the pairings for its 2018 women’s volleyball championship tournament with Southern Vermont College taking the No. 3 seed in the playoffs.
The Mountaineers are headed back to the postseason for the second-straight year and look to surpass their semifinal appearance from 2017. Southern Vermont had a 7-2 mark in Conference play this season to rank third in the standings after taking the head-to-head tiebreaker with New England College—which also finished at 7-2.
SVC finished the ’18 campaign with an overall record of 18-6—that being the most wins for the team since 2012 (24-7).
“It feels great to be back in the postseason,” said Southern Vermont second-year head coach Pat Robidoux. “We strive to be a top-four team each year and want to continue to push the level of the program.”
While aiming to win the league title, Robidoux and the Mountaineers are not getting ahead of themselves and know that they need to first take care of business on Tuesday.
“We are just focused on our first-round playoff match at this time,” the SVC head coach said.
Southern Vermont defeated Bay Path 3-0 in the regular season meeting on October 24; that was one of the Mountaineers’ 13 sweeps this season and one of their six NECC sweeps. Adversely, SVC lost 3-0 only once this year when the Mountaineers were swept in a September 14 non-conference match against Trinity College.
Coach Robidoux’s ’17 crew nearly made it to the Conference championship but fell 3-2 to Elms College in the semifinals. He thinks that this year’s team, however, has what it takes to make the difference.
“We have stronger players with the will to win,” Robidoux said of his 2018 squad.
With a Tuesday victory, SVC will take on the winner of No. 2 Elms (8-1) and seventh-seeded Dean College (2-7) on Friday. Dean topped Bay Path during the regular season to win a three-way tie with Mitchell College and Lesley University.
Friday’s other semifinal will see the winner of No. 1 Eastern Nazarene College (8-1) and eighth-seeded Mitchell (2-7) take on the victor of NEC against No. 5 Becker College (5-4). ENC defeated Elms in the regular season to take the tiebreaker with the Blazers while MC downed Lesley to keep the Lynx out of the postseason.
Fridays’ winners are set to line up on Sunday, November 4 at the highest remaining seed for the crown.
Quarterfinals – Tuesday, October 30
Match 1: #8 Mitchell (2-7) at #1 Eastern Nazarene (8-1) - 7:30 p.m.
Match 2: #7 Dean (2-7) at #2 Elms (8-1) – 7 p.m.
Match 3: #6 Bay Path (3-6) at #3 Southern Vermont (7-2) – 7 p.m.
Match 4: #5 Becker (5-4) at #4 New England College (7-2) – 7 p.m.
Semifinals – Friday, November 2 (at higher seed)
Match 5: Match 4 Winner vs. Match 1 Winner – TBD
Match 6: Match 3 Winner vs. Match 2 Winner – TBD
Championship – Sunday, November 4 (at highest remaining seed)
Match 7: Match 5 Winner vs. Match 6 Winner – TBD
– #LetsGoSVC –