UMES TAKING ON NEBRASKA IN NCAA TOURNAMENT FIRST ROUND
Nov. 25, 2012
PRINCESS ANNE, Md. -- The Hawks will fly to Lincoln to take on the 4-seed Nebraska Cornhuskers on Thursday, November 29th at 8 p.m. ET for the first round of the NCAA Tournament, announced on the ESPNU selection show on Sunday.
The Hawks learned about their first round matchup at the selection show viewing party at Uno's Chicago Grill in Fruitland, surrounded by friends, family, fellow UMES student-athletes, school alumni and university employees.
"We are excited to be representing UMES and the MEAC in our second consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance," says head coach Don Metil, "it is an incredible opportunity to advance our program in the national spotlight as well as in front of one of the most intense home court environments in the United States.
"I am thrilled about how we will be better prepared for this tournament than last, and we will show why we were the MEAC champion," says junior outside hitter Maline Vaitai.
UMES returns to the NCAA Tournament for the second straight season after the most successful year of the program. The Hawks currently sport a 28-5 record, the highest win total in school history, locking down an NCAA berth after winning the MEAC Tournament last weekend capped by a victory over Florida A&M in the final match.
"I'm very excited to be playing against Nebraska for my senior year, I am confident in our abilities to be competitive and we will have a strong match," says senior middle blocker Corey Haynes.
Nebraska earns the 4-seed in the NCAA Tournament after going 23-6 this season and 15-5 in the Big Ten. The Cornhuskers have won five of its last six matches and are led by senior outside hitter Gina Mancuso, who has 377 kills with a .276 hitting percentage, adding 31 aces and 260 digs.
Last season, UMES competed in its first-ever NCAA Tournament, falling to 9-seed UCLA, the eventual national champion, in Los Angeles.
The winner of the first and second round will head to the regional round in Omaha, Nebraska.