The Valparaiso University volleyball team is heading to postseason play for the first time since 2005, as it was announced Sunday evening that Valpo has earned a bid to the 2018 National Invitational Volleyball Championship (NIVC). Valpo will travel to Miami (Ohio) and take on Ball State in the opening round of the tournament Thursday afternoon at 4:30 p.m. CT.
"We are very excited to be playing in the postseason - it's been a long time coming," said Valpo head coach Carin Avery. "It's a great step for our program to play in this tournament. Congratulations to our senior class, because all of their hard work and dedication to this program has paid off. I'm so happy they get to experience a postseason."
This marks the program’s seventh postseason appearance all-time. The 1994, 1995 and 1996 Valpo squads appeared in the NCAA Tournament play-in match, while the 2003, 2004 and 2005 teams all earned spots in the NCAA Tournament.
Valpo enters the 32-team NIVC with a 25-10 overall record and posted an 11-7 mark in Missouri Valley Conference play, and came in at 72 in last week’s iteration of the NCAA volleyball RPI. Ball State posted a 22-9 overall record and went 12-4 in the Mid-American Conference, winning the MAC’s West Division. The Cardinals were 110 in last week’s RPI.
The winner of Thursday’s game between Valpo and Ball State will face the winner of the Miami (Ohio)-Northern Kentucky match on Friday evening to advance to the tournament quarterfinals.
The NIVC was revived in 2017 after previously being contested from 1989 through 1995.