Johannah Bangert tries to wrap up
Nov. 26, 2008
Champaign, Ill. -
NCAA Tournament Information
The NCAA Selection Show is scheduled for Sunday between 9-9:30 pm CT on ESPN News
The first and second rounds are played on campus sites and will determined by the NCAA Selection Committee.
Ranked 15th in the Bison/AVCA Coaches Poll and sixth in the RPI, Illinois has a good chance to host first and second rounds. Those dates would be Friday and Saturday, Dec. 5-6.
Regional and Final Four Sites are predetermined. This year's Regionals will be held at Colorado State University, Penn State University, the University of Texas and the University of Washington on Dec. 12-13. The Final Four is at the Qwest Center in Omaha, Neb., on Dec. 18-20.
Illinois NCAA Tournament history
Illinois will be seeking its first NCAA berth since 2004. The Illini have made the post-season five times in the last 10 seasons (1998, 1999, 2001, 2003 & 2004) and advanced to the Sweet 16 in 1998 and 2003.
Illinois has advanced to the NCAA 16 times in the past 23 seasons, reaching the Sweet 16 nine times and the Final Four in 1987 and 1988. Don Hardin was an assistant coach during the run in `87.
Notes on match-up with Badgers
Illinois defeated Wisconsin in three sets on Oct. 19. That marked the first win for the Illini over the Badgers since 2004.
Laura DeBruler had 11 kills in the first set as the Illini won it 27-25.
Illinois has not won at the Wisconsin Fieldhouse since 1995.
Wisconsin is fighting for its tournament lives this weekend. The Badgers were ranked 45th in the last RPI and are now 7-11 in the conference and 17-13 overall. No Big Ten teams has received a berth in the NCAA Tournament with a 7-13 record, a few have at 8-12.
Notes on the Northwestern match
Illinois will be seeking to avenge a five-set loss to Northwestern on Oct. 17. In that match the teams combined for 63 hitting errors. Laura DeBruler had 26 kills and 16 digs to pace the Illini.
Ironically, it was after that loss the Illinois started its charge up the Big Ten standings. The Illini won their next six matches and have been victorious in nine of the the 11 matches since then.
Illinois leads the series 42-24. The road team has dominated the series of late with the Wildcats winners in their last four trips to Huff Hall and the Illini winners of four of their last five in Evanston.
DeBruler, Bangert on verge of Big Ten statistical titles
With just two matches to play, Laura DeBruler and Johannah Bangert have substantial leads in kills and blocks per set, respectively, in the Big Ten. DeBruler enters the week will 4.70 kills per set in conference play, leading second place Erica Short, who is at 4.34. DeBruler also leads the league at 5.14 points per set, bettering Short (4.94) by .20. Bangert, meanwhile leads all Big Ten players with 1.71 blocks per set, leading second-place Christa Harmotto (1.61) by .10.
DeBruler is trying to repeat her conference leadership in kills while no Illinois player has led the league in blocks since Denise Fracaro in 1984.
Illinois players have not won multiple categories since 1998 when Melissa Beitz led the league in assists and Tracey Marshall led the conference in digs.