BELMONT, N.C. -- A pair of in-season tournaments and 12 home matches highlight the 2018 Belmont Abbey women's volleyball schedule, head coach Toni Elyea announced today. The campaign, which features 32 matches overall, includes several theme nights at the Wheeler Center.
"We are excited about the upcoming season," Elyea said. "Our program is continually improving and with a strong group of returners and eager first-years, we expect more of the same. We face off against top NCAA contenders at the beginning of our schedule and that should prepare us for a tough conference season."
The season begins on August 28 with a tri-match against Wingate and Winston-Salem State in Wingate, N.C. before back-to-back weekend tournaments -- the SAC Regional Crossover co-hosted by Lincoln Memorial and Tusculum and the Union University Volleyball Classic in Jackson, Tenn.
After three more matches on the road including the Conference Carolinas opener at Lees-McRae on Sept. 15, the Crusaders make their home debut against defending champion Barton on Sept. 21.
Three home weekends in October will feature tri-matches with North Greenville and Chowan visiting Belmont on Oct. 6, following by King and Augusta on Oct. 13. The run concludes with Converse and Piedmont International playing at the Wheeler Center on Oct. 20. The night before has been selected as Senior Night with Limestone as the opponent.
Belmont Abbey's promotional calendar also includes Hawaiian Day (Mount Olive on Oct. 22), Blackout Night (Southern Wesleyan on Oct. 5) and a Red White and Blue Night (Oct. 23 vs. Lees-McRae).
The Conference Carolinas Tournament begins on Nov. 6 with quarterfinal matches taking place at higher seeds followed by the semifinals and finals Nov. 10-11 at top remaining seed.
The Crusaders returns the conference Libero of the Year in Sarah Kenney and have three all-conference selections -- Kenney, Mackenzie Chrapliwy and Cassidy Bonito -- back from last year's conference runner-up finish.