June 8, 2009
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The Notre Dame volleyball team has finalized its schedule for the upcoming 2009 campaign. The slate includes eight NCAA Tournament teams from 2008 including national runner-up Stanford. Three squads (No. 2 Stanford, No. 10 Florida and No. 17 Michigan) ended last season nationally ranked.
“This is a very challenging schedule but we have a strong core returning along with a very talented senior class,” Irish head coach Debbie Brown said. “We want to schedule the best opponents year in, and year out. This will give the program the best opportunity to play at the highest level, and we’re looking forward to accepting the challenges presented to us this season.”
Notre Dame begins the season at home by hosting the Shamrock Invitational from Aug. 28-30. Denver, Stanford and LSU will be the visiting teams.
Xavier will host the Irish along with Tennessee and Michigan one week later (Sept. 4-6) for the Xavier Invitational in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Irish then return home to host the adidas/Notre Dame Invitational while rolling out the carpet for Wisconsin and New Mexico State.
A tri-meet in Tallahassee, Fla., will feature Notre Dame going head-to-head against both Miami (Sept. 19) and Florida State (Sept. 20).
BIG EAST Conference play begins with trips to Connecticut (Sept. 25) and St. John’s (Sept. 27). Notre Dame will stay at home for the next two weeks with matches against Villanova (Oct. 4), Cincinnati (Oct. 10) and Louisville (Oct. 11).
Three road matches at Pittsburgh (Oct. 17), West Virginia (Oct. 18) and DePaul (Oct. 23) come before a home Halloween weekend doubleheader with Seton Hall (Oct. 31) and Rutgers (Nov. 1).
The Irish travel to Marquette (Nov. 6) and Syracuse (Nov. 8) before ending the regular season at home versus Georgetown (Nov. 13) and USF (Nov. 15).
The 2009 BIG EAST Conference Championship will be hosted by Louisville from Nov. 20-22. Trailing the tournament will be a single match at Florida on Nov. 27.
The NCAA Tournament begins Dec. 3 at selected campus sites with the finals set to be played in Tampa, Fla., Dec. 17-19.
Notre Dame will play the bulk of its home matches in the Joyce Center Fieldhouse as construction in the south dome of the Joyce Center continues throughout the fall.
Notre Dame finished the 2008 season with a 17-14 overall record (9-5 BIG EAST) to secure the program’s 18th consecutive winning season. The Irish took home the second-place trophy at the BIG EAST Championship after staging a late-season rally, which led them to the tournament finale.
Six starters return from last year’s team including 14 monogram winners and six seniors.