Volleyball Releases 2006 Schedule
Aug. 4, 2006
GREENVILLE, N.C.--A pair of tournaments at Minges Coliseum as well as tournaments in Charlottesville, Va., and Charlotte, N.C. highlight the 2006 East Carolina volleyball schedule, which was released Friday.
The Pirates open the season Aug. 25 at home against William & Mary in Minges Coliseum in the 2006 East Carolina Invitational. ECU will face Furman and Virginia Tech in the second day of the tournament. The Pirates will play Wright State, Georgetown and Virginia in the University of Virginia Tournament Sept. 1-2. After a home tilt with intra-state rival UNC Wilmington on Sept. 6, ECU will travel to Charlotte for the UNC Charlotte Invitational, where the team will face North Florida, Charlotte and Penn, Sept. 8-9.
"We are excited about the opponents we are playing in our preseason tournaments to prepare us for Conference USA matches," head coach Coach Rushing said. "We begin the season by hosting a tournament at ECU, where we will be playing Furman, William & Mary, and Virginia Tech. Furman has had some good seasons in the recent past and return all seven starters, while William & Mary is coming off of a real good season last year. We wrap up that tournament playing ACC foe Virginia Tech.
"We will continue to get real good experience as we play in tournaments at Virginia and Charlotte."
ECU will return to Greenville for its second home tournament of the season, the East Carolina Classic Sept. 14-16 where it will face C-USA foe Marshall as well as Wisconsin-Green Bay and Grambling State. Matches against Campbell (Sept. 12) and North Carolina A&T (Sept. 19) round out the Pirates non-conference schedule.
"We host another tournament to end our preseason with Grambling State, Wisconsin-Green Bay, and Marshall," Rushing added. "Marshall is part of our tournament, but that match will count as our first Conference USA ,match. They lost three key people from their championship season last year, but will still be a very tough team to beat. "
The C-USA schedule includes home matches versus Marshall, UTEP, UAB, Memphis, Rice, Houston, Southern Miss and UCF. Road contests for ECU include trips to Tulane, SMU, Tulsa, Southern Miss, UCF, UAB, Memphis and Marshall. The 2006 Conference USA Volleyball Championship will be held in Houston, Texas this year.
"Last year we had nine home matches and 22 on the road," Rushing said. "This coming season we have 16 at home and 14 away so it will be so much easier on us considering travel. It is also great for us because our players love playing in front of a good home crowd. And it is wonderful for all the fans to be able to watch a lot more good college volleyball in person."
East Carolina returns seven letterwinners from its 2005 team that posted a 20-11 overall record and a 9-6 mark in C-USA play.