Email This Page
Volleyball Announces 2011 Schedule
Head Coach Ian Blanchard
BALTIMORE—The UMBC volleyball team’s 2011 slate will feature four teams from last year’s NCAA Tournament, including Washington, who advanced to the Elite Eight, head coach Ian Blanchard announced Wednesday.
For the second time in three years, the Retrievers will head out west to compete in five-time national champion and 2010 NCAA Tournament participant Long Beach State’s invitational. UMBC will also battle the Huskies of the newly renamed Pac-12 and Prairie View A&M of the SWAC in the tournament and will face UC Riverside before returning to the east coast.
“We’re really excited to give our girls the challenge of playing some of the best competition in the country,” Blanchard said.
Four local rivals await UMBC the next weekend as the Battle of Baltimore will take place at Towson on Friday, Sept. 3 and Morgan State on Saturday, Sept. 4. Loyola and Coppin State will also face the Retrievers.
After UMBC’s only mid-week home contest of the season against Navy on Sept. 6, the Retrievers will host the third annual Maddie Bingaman Memorial Tournament, this year featuring Fairleigh Dickinson, Norfolk State and Youngstown State.
The Retrievers’ final tune-up before conference play will be at the Penn Invitational, where UMBC will face the defending Ivy League champion Quakers, along with Rhode Island and William and Mary.
“Our non-conference schedule gives us a great opportunity to build confidence and prepare us for America East play,” Blanchard said. “This year in the conference, we should see the most parity in all of my years here at UMBC, so it will be a big challenge.”
UMBC begins America East play with three home games, including Stony Brook on Sept. 23 before battling in rematches of the 2010 America East Championship with Binghamton and Albany on Sept. 30 and Oct. 2, respectively. The Retrievers defeated the Bearcats in the conference semifinal before falling to the Great Danes in the final a year ago.
The Retrievers will face AE associate member Providence on Oct. 14 at 5 p.m. at the RAC as part of the university’s 2011 Homecoming Weekend before concluding their home schedule on Nov. 6 against Hartford.
The Retrievers will be looking to advance to the America East Championships for the fourth consecutive season and the fifth time in the last six campaigns.
For the fourth consecutive year, every Retriever home match will be broadcast live via UMBCRetrievers.tv.