No. 4 Cougars to Host NCAA Regional
PROVO, Utah - No. 4 BYU welcomes No. 5 Texas, Florida and Michigan to the Smith Fieldhouse starting Friday, Dec. 7.
The Cougars (29-1) will play Florida (26-6) on Friday at 4:30 p.m. MT on ESPN3 while Texas (22-4) and Michigan (24-9) will face off earlier in the day at 2 p.m. MT on ESPNU. The winners of each match will then compete the following day at 6 p.m. MT on ESPNU.
Last weekend, BYU defeated Stony Brook and rival Utah in the first two rounds of the tourney to advance to the program's seventh-straight Sweet 16.
This year, however, is unique for BYU – the Cougars are hosting an NCAA Regional for the first time since 1986. BYU is 15-0 at home this season and have won 22 straight dating back to last season; in the NCAA Tournament, BYU has won 19-straight matches dating back to 1994 and are 28-6 overall at home.
BYU is No. 1 in the nation in hitting percentage (.319), No. 2 in opponent hitting percentage (.136) and No. 5 in blocks per set (2.94). The Cougars will face a Florida team that ranks No. 9 in opponent hitting percentage (.156), No. 10 in blocks per set (2.84) and No. 24 in hitting percentage (.259).
Ranked No. 1 for 11-straight weeks in the regular season, the Cougars recently swept the AVCA Region awards, with Roni Jones-Perry winning Player of the Year, Heather Gneiting taking Freshman of the Year and Heather Olmstead claiming Coach of the Year. A program-record six players were named All-Region as well.
The winner of Saturday's match will advance to the NCAA Final Four in Minneapolis on Dec. 13 and 15.
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