Fins Ready for No. 5 Florida in NCAA First Round

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – For the first time since 2004, the Jacksonville University volleyball team is going dancing. It was announced during the live selection show on ESPNU Sunday night that the Fins will face No. 5 seed Florida in the first round of the 2013 NCAA Tournament. The Gators (27-3) are hosting the first and second rounds in the Stephen C. O’Connell Center Thursday and Friday, Dec. 5-6.

Florida State (24-7) and Georgia Southern (28-5) will kick-off the first match at 5 p.m. on Thursday before the Dolphins (30-3) and Gators collide at 7 p.m. The winners of each match will advance to the second round on Friday at 7 p.m.

The victor will earn a berth in the Champaign, Ill., regional, which will take place Dec. 13-14 at the State Farm Center.

“We are feeling confident about entering this tournament,” said second-year Head Coach Michelle Collier. “Making it to the NCAA tournament was our ultimate goal and we accomplished that. So now it's really just about leaving it all out there, pushing ourselves as far as we can, and seeing where that takes us.

“We are looking forward the opportunity to play a great team like Florida,” Collier continued. “We know they are going to be the biggest challenge we have faced all year, but we are excited to come out and give it our best shot.”

The last meeting between JU and Florida was on Sept. 7, 2012. The Fins were swept in Gainesville by then-ranked No. 15 Florida.

The NCAA First and Second rounds will be streamed live and for FREE on GatorVision.tv. Along with free video, each match will have live stats via GameTracker. All information for the 2013 NCAA Volleyball Gainesville Sub-Regional can be found here.

NCAA Notes:

- In 2004, Jacksonville competed in its first NCAA Tournament under former Head Coach Kevin Paul since the program moved to the Division I level in 1985

- The Fins competed in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at host Florida A&M against eventual national champion, No. 6 Stanford, and were swept

- They finished their 2004 season 15-14 overall, 8-2 in the A-Sun, tied for second in the conference and won JU’s first A-Sun Tournament Championship

Season Notes:

- As of Dec. 2, Jacksonville is ranked 89th in the nation of 332 ranked schools

- They are also in the top 50 in the country in five of seven categories: sixth in aces per set (1.76), seventh in match W-L percentage (.909), 32nd in hitting percentage (.257), 35th in kills per set (13.98) and 42nd in assists per set (12.95)

- The Fins are currently riding a 10-match win streak, tying their earlier 10-match win streak from Sept. 27 to Oct. 25

- 30 wins is the program’s best since tying the 1982 team’s record

- Three losses is the fewest in the program’s 41-year history

- JU's 16 A-Sun wins was the most since joining the conference in 1998