The Sacred Heart University women's volleyball team will take on top-seeded Baylor University in the first round of the 2019 NCAA Tournament. The bracket was unveiled on ESPNU Sunday night. USC and Stephen F. Austin will play in the other first round match in Waco, Texas.
SHU, 20-11, advances to the NCAA Tournament for the third time in program history. SHU took on Nebraska in the 2010 tournament and played Stanford in the 2011 event. The Pioneers won the second set against the Cardinal, for their first NCAA Tournament set victory.
The Pioneers earned the Northeast Conference bid to the NCAA Championship, after sweeping its way to the NEC Tournament title. The Pioneers defeated LIU and CCSU in straight sets, with Sarah Ciszek earning Tournament MVP honors. Makayla Dole, Liisel Nelis, Gianna Scioletti and Emma Smallcomb all earned NEC All-Tournament Team honors as well.
Baylor earned the top-seed after winning the Big 12, posting a 25-1 record. The Bears hit .281 as a team and have recorded 222 blocks on the year. Yossiana Pressley leads the Bears with 458 kills, 5.52 a set. Kara McGhee has recorded 111 blocks to lead the team
SHU has won 20 matches for the fifth time in program history and for the first since 2016. The Pioneers reached the plateau for the first time in 2009 and set the program-record for wins, with 29, in 2010 on the way to the program's first NCAA Tournament victory.