GREENWOOD, Ind. - The 2016 HCAC volleyball tournament will be held this week, November 2, 5-6. Wednesday's opening round games will be played on the campus of the high seed, while the semifinals and championship will be played at Hanover College. The Panthers claimed the school's fourth HCAC volleyball crown and earned the right to host the tournament.
Hanover finished the season 24-7 overall and 9-0 in conference play, winning all 10 of their last 10 matches to end the season. Bluffton (21-8, 8-1 HCAC) earned the No. 2 seed in the tournament, finishing a game behind champion Hanover. Hanover and Bluffton earned a first-round bye after earning the top two seeds in the tournament and will play separate semifinal matches Saturday afternoon.
Action will get underway Wednesday evening as Manchester (18-12, 5-4 HCAC) earned the No. 5 seed and will face No. 4 Defiance (10-15, 5-4 HCAC). The Yellow Jackets beat the Spartans 3-2 on October 12 in conference play. Defiance went 5-5 down the stretch, while Manchester finished the season 7-3. The winner will advance on to play Hanover at 2 p.m. Saturday afternoon at Hanover. The Panthers swept Manchester and beat Defiance 3-2 during the regular season.
Transylvania (13-15, 4-5 HCAC), the No. 6 seed in the tourney, will take on No. 3 Rose-Hulman (15-17, 6-3 HCAC) in the second opening round game Wednesday. Back on October 29, Rose-Hulman defeated the Pioneers 3-0 at home. Rose-Hulman went 5-5 in the last 10 matches, while Transylvania finished the season 3-7. Bluffton has the right to play the victor between the Pioneers and Fightin' Engineers Saturday afternoon. The Beavers swept both Rose-Hulman and Transylvania during conference play.
The championship match will be held on Sunday, November 6 at 1 p.m. The tournament champion will earn the HCAC's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III tournament that is slated to begin on Friday, November 11.
First Round - Wednesday, Nov. 2 (at high seed)
Game 1: #6 Transylvania at #3 Rose-Hulman - Rose-Hulman, 3-1
Game 2: #5 Manchester at #4 Defiance - Manchester, 3-1
Semifinals - Saturday, Nov. 5 (at Hanover College)
Game 3: #1 Hanover vs. #5 Manchester - Hanover, 3-1
Game 4: #2 Bluffton vs. #3 Rose-Hulman - Bluffton, 3-2
Championship - Sunday, Nov. 6 (at Hanover College)
#1 Hanover vs. #2 Bluffton - 1 p.m.