NCAA Tournament Essentials: Missouri vs. Arizona

MU volleyball will head to Lincoln, Nebraska, with four All-SEC players for the NCAA Tournament.
Missouri's Leketor Member-Meneh spikes the ball into two Auburn defenders during the Missouri's eventual four-set win on Friday, Oct. 19, 2018.

Missouri volleyball will take on Arizona in the first round of the NCAA Tournament in Lincoln, Nebraska, on Friday, Nov. 30.

The winner of the clash between MU and No. 23 Arizona (22-10, 11-9 Pac-12) will advance to face the winner of Nebraska and Hofstra in the second round, also in Lincoln, on Dec. 1. No. 6 Nebraska (24-6, 15-5 Big Ten) is the top-seeded team in the group of four on the bracket and is hosting the games.

Missouri (23-7, 13-5 SEC) enters the field ranked No. 24 in the country. This is the Tigers’ fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament berth, and their 15th appearance under coaches Susan and Wayne Kreklow.

Missouri has reached the Sweet Sixteen two straight seasons, last year with wins over Kansas and Wichita State. In 2016, the team lost to No. 2 seed Minnesota, and No. 1 seed Penn State in 2017.

Missouri finished the regular season with a five set victory at LSU on Nov. 21. The victory put the Tigers back in the win column after dropping two straight matches against ranked opponents, to No. 22 Tennessee and No. 11 Kentucky.

Missouri wins SEC postseason awards

The Tigers were awarded a program record five postseason awards from the SEC league office on Sunday.

Four players — senior Alyssa Munlyn and sophomores Kylie Deberg, Dariana Hollingsworth and Leketor Member-Meneh — were named to All-SEC teams. Redshirt freshman Andrea Fuentes was named to the SEC All-Freshman team.

In her final season in the program, Munlyn finished second in the SEC in blocks.

Complimenting the three time All-American, the other four players are underclassmen, an important factor for Kreklow’s program after this was considered to be a rebuilding season at its outset. Missouri introduced seven new players, six of them transfers, to replace the hole created by last season’s sizable graduating class.

Edited by Bennett Durando | bdurando@themaneater.com

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