BOULDER, Colo. — For the 20th time in Colorado volleyball history, the Buffs have advanced to the NCAA Tournament.
The NCAA announced Sunday night that CU will head to Baylor University in Waco, Texas to play fifth-seed No. 20 Rice (26-3) in the first round on Thursday, Dec. 1 at 3:30 p.m. MT. The last time the Buffs reached the NCAA tournament was in 2017, when setter Brynna DeLuzio was a freshman.
"We've had great success at Baylor before, so it's exciting to be back," DeLuzio said. "We're all really excited about our seeding and who we're matched up against, so we're ready for Waco."
In 2017, CU was selected to play at Baylor in the first two rounds and made it to the Sweet Sixteen by defeating James Madison in the first round and No. 12 seeded Baylor in the second round.
"Obviously we're excited to be in the tournament, no matter where we ended up," head coach Jesse Mahoney said. "It was a little anxiety inducing as we were selected in the last quadrant. We're happy to play a great first round opponent and will hopefully have an opportunity to play in the second round as well. It'll be a nice bookend for Brynna. The last time she was [in the tournament] was a long six years ago.
In the other first round match-up, No. 17 Baylor (23-6), which earned a four-seed, will host Stephen F. Austin State University (26-4) Thursday night at 6 p.m. MT.
The winners of Thursday's matches will play on Friday for the opportunity to advance to the NCAA Regional competition in Louisville, Ky.
"I'm proud of our team, happy that all their work has paid off, and that we're still playing," Mahoney stated. "There's not a lot of teams that are and we're happy to be one of them."
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