Volleyball Travels to Battle No. 13 Nebraska and Southern Miss
Sep 4, 2013
The powerhouse Nebraska program has been ranked in the top three nationally in attendance for the past decade and takes a 181-match sellout streak dating back to 2001 into the inaugural opening of the Bob Devaney Sports Center Friday night.
"It's mostly about the opportunity to play a great team in Nebraska," Villanova head coach Josh Steinbach said. "We were looking for that, for our young players to have a chance to play in that kind of environment and take a shot at one of the nation's elite teams."
Not only will the Cornhuskers be opening the new facility but they will name the volleyball court after legendary head coach Terry Pettit as well. He is the father of Villanova setter Emma Pettit and was inducted into the AVCA Hall of Fame in 2009 and led the Cornhuskers to a national championship in 1995.
"With Emma's dad being honored and the opening of their facility, it really made it a perfect opportunity for us to travel to Nebraska and be a part of this event," Steinbach added.
Villanova finished 1-2 in its opening weekend at the Golden Grizzlies Invitational with the sole win coming against Oakland in four sets. The Wildcats later took on Central Michigan, but dropped a fifth set heartbreaker in the final match of the tournament.
Nebraska took two out of three in their opening weekend at the Marcia E. Hamilton Classic in St. Louis, Mo. The Cornhuskers shutout Louisiana Monroe and Saint Louis, 3-0, and fell, 3-1, to an Auburn squad that received votes in the AVCA Coaches poll.
Southern Miss Head coach Amanda Berkley's debut at the helm was off to an impressive start after taking over a team that finished with only eight wins a year ago. The Golden Eagles dominated opponents at home with three shutout victories in five days against Jackson State, Troy and New Orleans.
Steinbach will look to become the second coach in Villanova history (Dennis McGinnis) to reach historic win number 100 as the man in charge, after defeating Oakland for his 99th victory last weekend.
Senior captain Mariah Henley is seeking another milestone as well this weekend after climbing into the top-10 with 1,228 career digs versus Oregon State. The libero is currently eighth and in striking distance of Pam Clifford (1,251) and Celine Nguyen (1,254) in the Villanova record book.