Baylor volleyball roars into NCAA tourney as No. 5 national seed
All year long, Baylor volleyball has been one of the sport’s best teams — and now, they’re a top national seed as the NCAA Tournament is set to begin on Thursday.
Head coach Ryan McGuyre’s team earned the No. 5 overall seed and the right to play the first and second rounds of the tournament on their home court at the Ferrell Center. Baylor will play Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Thursday, with the winner of that matchup playing the winner of the opening round game between Northern Colorado and Washington State on Friday.
The Bears’ resume coming into the postseason is stout. They played a schedule that McGuyre said before the season even began would be the toughest he’s seen since he came to Baylor, and handled that schedule in a manner emblematic of the program’s sustained excellence. Their 20-5 record marks the sixth straight year the Bears have won at least 20 games, with this year also marking their sixth straight trip to the postseason. They also got it done off the court as well; their 10 Academic All-Big 12 selections matched a program record.
Baylor is led by the Big 12’s leader in kills, senior Yossiana Pressley, and grad transfer Avery Skinner, who played on last year’s national champion at Kentucky. The battle-tested squad also includes reigning Big 12 Libero of the Year Shanel Bramschreiber, setters Hannah Sedwick and Callie Williams (both in the top 10 in the Big 12 in assists), and Kara McGhee, who finished in the top three in the Big 12 in blocks this season.
The Bears are well-prepared for this year’s field; 19 of their 25 matches came against NCAA tournament teams, and they went 14-5 in those contests. Seven of nine Big 12 teams reached the tournament, and Baylor finished second in conference play.
The postseason begins Thursday at 7 p.m. for Baylor, with tickets for their matchup against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi available now.
Sic ’em, Baylor volleyball!