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FGCU volleyball looks to win first conference tournament title

Photo courtesy of Linwood Ferguson
The wait is over, and now, FGCU volleyball can look forward to its 2016 season. With the season right around the corner, FGCU volleyball head coach Matt Botsford released the 2016 schedule on Tuesday, July 12.
The Eagles are returning four starters from a team that won 20 plus games in 2015 and, along with those starters, five more letter winners with hopes of taking their fourth Atlantic Sun regular-season title in 10 years.

Their schedule includes four NCAA Tournament teams, five RPI top 100 programs and one ranked team from 2015. FGCU will play 15 matches at Alico Arena, six within the first three weeks of the season.

“Our home schedule will be extremely competitive, highlighted by the participation of Indiana University in our third weekend event,” Botsford said. “Having a Big Ten team on our home court will be a great treat for Southwest Florida volleyball enthusiasts.”
The Eagles face a tough start to the season with meetings from three of the four NCAA Tournament teams on the schedule, starting Aug. 26 against Big East Villanova.

The following day in Athens, Ohio, FGCU faces a pair of defending conference champions, Western Kentucky, the No. 20 team in the nation in 2015, and Ohio.
“We knew we wanted to challenge ourselves early this year in preparation for the A-Sun; this schedule will accomplish that,” Botsford said. “We kick things off in Ohio, going up against a strong group of NCAA qualifiers, and I’m excited to be tested right from the jump.”
Returning home for six matches, the Eagles play a pair of tournaments, starting Sept. 2 against Delaware, New Orleans the next day and closing the day out with VCU on Sept. 3. One week later, FGCU hosts South Alabama, Marist and Indiana to end the home stand.
Continuing their busy schedule traveling back and forth along the East Coast, the Eagles embark on a challenging season, as they return with a team that is stronger than ever.
“We have made great strides over the past two seasons,” Botsford said. “And, I am anticipating that trend to continue, as we battle for a conference championship.”

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To access the complete 2016 schedule, fans can go online to FGCU Athletics, selecting Menu, Sports and All Schedules before choosing 2016 Volleyball.

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