BEMIDJI, Minn. - Bemidji State University head volleyball coach Laurie Bitter today announced the Beavers’ 2008 volleyball schedule, featuring three preseason tournaments with ten home matches and head-to-head contests with six teams that were ranked in Division II’s top 25 at one time or another last season. Six of the eight opponents in the 2007 North Central Region Tournament, including 2007 NCAA Division II National Champion Concordia-St. Paul, penciled in as BSU opponents.
The 2008 slate gets underway with tournament play on three consecutive weekends. Friday Aug. 29-30 the Beavers break the seal on the campaign as they will play in a tournament in Las Vegas, Nev. BSU will then come back and head to the University of North Dakota for a (Sept. 2) Tuesday match with the Fighting Sioux in Grand Forks, N.D. The following two weekends the Beavers will continue tournament play traveling 90 miles east on highway 2 on Sept. 5-6 for the Golden Eagle Invitational hosted by the University of Minnesota, Crookston. BSU wraps up tournament play on Sept. 12-13 when it visits the beautiful shore of Lake Superior for the UMD Classic Tournament hosted by the University of Minnesota Duluth. Opponents for all three tournaments are to be named at a later date.
The Beavers continue play on the road as they open up their conference schedule versus Minnesota State University-Moorhead on Sept. 19, a team that made a run at the 2007 NSIC tournament championship before falling to Wayne State (Neb.) in the championship match. The following afternoon BSU continues NSIC play by visiting Minnesota, Crookston.
September 23, the Beavers host the Northern State University Wolves in BSU’s 2008 home opener which will see BSU play six of its next eight matches at the BSU Gymnasium. Bemidji State will remain at home on Sept. 26 when it host Winona State University at 7 p.m. followed by a 4 p.m. match with Upper Iowa University on Sept. 27 to round out its first three-match home stand of the season.
With the turn of the calendar to October the Beavers will play four consecutive matches versus teams that ended the 2007 campaign ranked in Division II’s top 25. The Beavers will rekindle a series that has been in limbo since Sept. 11, 2004 with Augustana College on Oct. 3 in Sioux Falls, S.D. A trip to Wayne, Neb. on Oct. 4 will wrap up the short road swing with a match with Wayne State College at 4 p.m.
BSU will begin its second and last three-match home stand of the season as it welcomes the 2007 North Central Conference Champion and North Central Region Runner-Up Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs to the BSU Gymnasium on Tuesday, Oct. 7 followed by a match with the 2007 NCAA Division II National Champion Concordia-St. Paul Golden Bears on Oct. 10. The Beavers wrap up the home stand with a match versus the St. Cloud State University Huskies on Saturday Oct. 11.
The Beavers will embark on its longest conference road swing of the season playing Northern State (Oct. 17), University of Mary (Oct. 18), and Minnesota Duluth (Oct. 25) before wrapping up October at home with a match with Minnesota State University on Oct. 31. This will revisit a series that has been in idle since Aug. 25, 2005.
November will open with BSU hosting Southwest Minnesota State University on Nov. 1 followed by a trip to St. Cloud, Minn., to battle the Huskies from St. Cloud State on Nov. 4. The Beavers will wrap up the home portion of their schedule hosting Augustana and Wayne State (Neb.) on Nov. 7-8.
BSU will finish the regular season with a pair of away matches versus conference opponents. Nov. 14, the Beavers visit Winona State in Winona, Minn. followed by a matinee affair versus Upper Iowa the following day in Fayette, Iowa at 3 p.m.
Bemidji State returns seven players from a team that finished eighth in the NSIC with a record of 10-17 overall and 6-12 versus NSIC opponents. Bitter has also added six new players all of who are incoming freshman for the upcoming season.
Bemidji State, located in Bemidji, Minn., is a member of the NCAA Division II and competes in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference. The BSU volleyball team is coming off a season in which it posted an overall record of 10-17 and finished the NSIC season in eighth place with a mark of 6-12.