UCSB Receives At-Large Berth into NCAA Tournament

Lindsey Ruddins (Photo by Jeff Liang)
Lindsey Ruddins (Photo by Jeff Liang)

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – UC Santa Barbara received an at-large berth into the 2019 NCAA Division I Women's Volleyball Tournament and will head to Austin, Texas, as the committee announced the 64-team field on Sunday evening.

The 29th tournament appearance in program history and first since 2013 will see the Gauchos take on Texas State (24-8) this Thursday, Dec. 5 at 2:30 p.m. PT in Austin, Texas. No. 2 overall seed Texas (21-3) will host the first and second round matches, while taking on Albany (16-10). The winners of the two matches will play each other on Friday, Dec. 6 at 5:00 p.m. PT.

Santa Barbara finished the regular season with a 22-5 overall record, the most wins since 2009, which was also the last time the Gauchos earned an at-large berth into the NCAA Tournament. UCSB placed third in the Big West with a 12-4 conference record, and joined conference champion and No. 12 seed Hawai'i, as well as at-large selection Cal Poly in the field. It was also the first time since 2013 that three teams from the Big West made the tournament. 

It is the second tournament appearance in head coach Nicole Lantagne Welch's seven seasons at the helm.

First and second-round matches will be played Dec. 5-7 at 16 campus sites. Teams winning both matches will continue to regional play Dec. 13-14. Regionals for the NCAA Division I Women's Volleyball Championship will be held at four non-predetermined campus sites, which will be announced on Dec. 8. At each site, four teams will compete in single-elimination regional semifinal competition.

The regional winners will advance to the national semifinals and championship final at the PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh, Pa., on Dec. 19 and 21. The national semifinal matches will broadcast on ESPN and the championship match will broadcast on ESPN2.

Stay tuned for more updates on UCSBGauchos.com and follow the UCSB women's volleyball team on Instagram and Twitter @UCSB_Volleyball.