State Colleges

NNU volleyball headed to NCAA Division II Tournament

Northwest Nazarene earned a berth to the NCAA Division II Tournament for the second time in three seasons and third time overall.

“We have worked hard this year to get better and have come a long ways,” coach Doug English said. “We are grateful for the opportunity to continue our journey as a group and hope to play volleyball for as long as we can.”

The Crusaders (20-7, 13-7 GNAC) will head to Anchorage, Alaska, for the NCAA West Regional on Dec. 1-3, facing a familiar foe in GNAC rival Simon Fraser in the quarterfinals. The Crusaders, the fifth seed, and the No. 4 Clan (21-7) play at 7 p.m. MT Dec. 1.

The winner advances to face either host and top-seeded Alaska Anchorage (29-2) or eighth-seeded Chico State (23-7) at 9:30 p.m. MT Friday.

The Region final is set for 9 p.m. MT Saturday.

Other regional matchups include: No. 6 seed Cal Baptist (20-8) versus No. 3 seed Western Washington (21-7), and No. 7 seed Central Washington (17-11) versus No. 2 seed Cal State San Bernardino (24-4).

The Crusaders and Clan have met twice this season, with Simon Fraser winning both matches in straight sets. SFU beat NNU 25-21, 25-18, 25-15 in Burnaby, B.C., on Oct. 7, then topped the Crusaders 27-25, 25-22, 25-23 at the Johnson Sports Center on the NNU campus Nov. 5.