Gophers earn bid to NCAA volleyball tournament, will face Utah State

The Minnesota Gophers on Sunday made the field for the 2023 NCAA Division I Volleyball Championships. They will face sixth-seeded Utah State at 4 p.m. Friday in Omaha, Neb.

The Gophers (16-12, 12-8 Big Ten) and Aggies will compete in the first match of the evening, followed by No. 3 Creighton facing Colgate at 6:30 p.m. The winner of each match will advance to the second round at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, also at the home of  Creighton.

Should the Gophers advance out of the first two rounds, they will travel to the Pittsburgh regional from Dec. 7-9. Their portion of the bracket includes No. 2 seed Louisville and No. 4 Washington State.

The Gophers placed fifth in the Big Ten behind only Nebraska (19-1), Wisconsin (17-3), Penn State (15-5) and Purdue (15-5). All four of those teams also made the NCAA field. Nebraska holds the No. 1 overall seed, while Wisconsin (3) will also host one of the four regionals.

Purdue will host in the first two rounds, while No. 5 Penn State travels to No. 4 seeded Kansas.

In all, the Gophers faced 14 teams that made up the field of 64. Along with the five other Big Ten teams Minnesota faced this season, the Gophers also competed against Baylor, Creighton, Florida, Oregon, Stanford, Texas and TCU.

The NCAA championships are Dec. 14-17 at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla.

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