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Huskers Set to Clash with Longhorns in NCAA Volleyball Championship

Lincoln, NE – December 16, 2023 –

In a titanic matchup that promises to be a historic clash, the top-ranked Nebraska volleyball team is set to face the formidable No. 5 Texas Longhorns in the NCAA Championship this Sunday. The highly-anticipated showdown will take place at 2 p.m. (CT) at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla, and is slated for broadcast on ABC and WatchESPN.

The Road to the Championship

Nebraska’s journey to the NCAA Championship has been nothing short of spectacular. With a 33-1 record, the Huskers have displayed incredible skill and resilience, earning them the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament for the sixth time in the program’s storied history. This year’s remarkable run included capturing the outright Big Ten title with a near-flawless 19-1 league record, marking their first Big Ten title since 2017 and the fourth since joining the conference in 2011.

Defensive Dominance and Offensive Prowess

Known for their formidable defense, the Huskers have led the nation by limiting opponents to a combined .135 hitting percentage. Their offensive efficiency has been equally impressive, with a .278 hitting average ranking them 18th nationally and averaging 14.03 kills per set, placing them 12th in the country.

Historic Team Achievements

This season has been one for the record books for Nebraska volleyball. The team’s 33 wins are the most since the 2006 team’s 33 victories, and their 27-match winning streak to start the season was the best since 2005. The Huskers’ success is a testament to the leadership of Head Coach John Cook, who has guided the team to 35 conference titles during his tenure.

Player Highlights and Awards

  • Merritt Beason: First-team AVCA All-American and the AVCA Region Player of the Year. Beason, a junior opposite hitter, leads the team with an impressive 3.83 kills per set.
  • Lexi Rodriguez: First-team AVCA All-American and two-time Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year.
  • Harper Murray: AVCA Region Freshman of the Year and Big Ten Freshman of the Year.
  • Bergen Reilly: Big Ten Setter of the Year and a key player in the Huskers’ offense.
  • Bekka Allick: Notable for her defensive prowess at the net with back-to-back matches of double-digit blocks.

Scouting the Opponent: Texas

Texas enters the championship match as the defending national champion, boasting a 27-4 record. The Longhorns, led by stars like Madisen Skinner and Asjia O’Neal, have been a force throughout the tournament, setting the stage for a clash of volleyball titans.

Series History

The historical rivalry between Nebraska and Texas adds an extra layer of excitement to the championship match. Nebraska holds a 33-24 all-time record against the Longhorns, with the most recent meeting resulting in a Husker victory during the 2021 Austin Regional Final.

A Record-Breaking Season

Nebraska volleyball has not only dominated on the court but also in the stands. The team set attendance records this year, including the largest crowd for a women’s sporting event in the U.S. during their outdoor match at Memorial Stadium. The Huskers’ total attendance for the 2023 season reached a milestone, becoming the first female sport in NCAA history to draw over 250,000 home fans in a single season.

Looking Ahead

As the Huskers gear up for Sunday’s monumental match, the stage is set for a battle that could etch itself into the annals of college volleyball history. With both teams bringing their best, this championship match is one you won’t want to miss.

Tune in on Sunday at 2 p.m. (CT) to witness the Huskers take on the Longhorns in a fight for the national championship. Go Big Red!

#HuskersVolleyball #NCAAVolleyball #NebraskaVsTexas #NationalChampionship2023 🏐🌽🔴

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