Washington Volleyball Announces 2003 Schedule
Aug. 13, 2003
SEATTLE -- The Washington volleyball team opens its 2003 slate with nine pre-conference matches over a three week stretch before making its Pacific-10 debut in Seattle in mid-September. The Huskies, who posted a 20-win record last year and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament, will have their hands full with a conference schedule that includes defending national champion USC. All totaled, Washington has 13 matches on tap against teams that are currently ranked in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) preseason top-25 poll.
The Huskies make their season debut in Madison, Wis., on Aug. 29-30, with three matches in the Badger Invitational. Washington opens with UMKC before facing New Hampshire and No. 17 Wisconsin. UW then travels to Indiana in another four-team tournament, Sept. 5-6, to play Middle Tennessee State, Ohio, and host IPFW. The Dawgs continue their pre-conference tour with a single match at Idaho State on Sept. 10, and an Idaho Tournament that includes the host Vandals and Northern Arizona on Sept. 12-13.
'We will be tested early by Wisconsin,' said McLaughlin. 'We intend to train at a high level in August and make progress in our pre-conference matches to make any necessary adjustments before the Pac-10 season.'
After three weeks on the road, Washington makes its first appearance at home in the Bank of America Arena on Sept. 18-19, when it kicks off the Pac-10 schedule against Arizona State and No. 10 Arizona. The Pac-10 slate is expected to be as tough as ever as eight of its members competed in the NCAA Tournament last season. The Huskies will play their final regular season match at home against Utah Valley State on Nov. 26 as they gear up for the postseason.
'From top to bottom the Pac-10 is tough,' said McLaughlin. 'We've got to come into each night prepared to battle. We also have to be prepared to face a conference team in the NCAA Tournament. With eight of the Pac-10's teams making the tournament and four of those advancing to the final eight, the proof is in the pudding. The Pac-10 season will be a challenge.'
Washington returns 12 letterwinners and four starters from last year's squad that posted a 20-11 record and a 9-9 mark in the Pac-10 for a fifth-place finish.