Valparaiso University's volleyball team will begin defense of its Mid-Continent Conference Tournament championship on Friday evening as the Crusaders face IUPUI at 5 p.m. in Tulsa, Okla.
The Crusaders, the tournament's top seed and league's regular season champion with a perfect 14-0 mark in Mid-Con play, defeated the fourth-seeded Jaguars 30-19, 30-17, 30-15 back on October 8 at the Athletics-Recreation Center. Valpo also won at IUPUI on November 6, 26-30, 30-25, 30-27, 30-24.
Valpo enters the tournament 27-4 overall, while IUPUI is 15-16 overall and 9-5 in Mid-Con play.
The second semifinal, beginning at 7:30 p.m., matches second-seeded Oral Roberts (18-13, 10-4 Mid-Con) against the third seed, Western Illinois (9-5, 13-16). Oral Roberts is the tournament host.
The championship match will take place on Saturday afternoon beginning at 2 p.m., with the winner earning the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. Valpo earned its first NCAA bid with a win over Oral Roberts in 2003.