It’s official! The Lady Vols are back in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2012! They’re heading to Pullman WA where they’ll face Colorado State in the first round on
ThursdayFriday — possibly late for us since it will be out on the west coast. If they win that match they’ll face #16 seed Washington State or Northern Arizona. Updates coming…
— The NCAA is listing the time of the match as 7:00pm ET.
— Five SEC teams made the tournament: Tennessee, Kentucky, Florida, Missouri, and South Carolina.
— Check back everyday this week as I’ll be posting match notes each day leading up to the first game!
The SEC announced their annual awards today and three Lady Vols made the cut! Congratualtions to Erica Treiber and Tessa Gribbs who were named to the All-SEC team and Lily Felts who was named to the SEC All-Freshman team. Treiber and Grubbs are the first Tennessee players to make All-SEC since 2012, while Felts is the first on the freshman list since 2016.
The NCAA will officially announce the 64 teams being invited to compete in this year’s National Championship Tournament tonight at 8:30pm ET on ESPNU. According to RichKern.com’s estimator, Tennessee should end up around #26 in the RPI. I’ll be back tonight with a few quick notes, then all week we’ll get ready for UT’s first tourney appearance since 2012!
UT got a 3-1 (25-13, 25-13, 21-25, 25-23) win over Mississippi on Senior Night to end the regular season 25-5 with an 11 match winning streak. More tonight.
UPDATE: Tessa Grubbs put down 20 kills along with a career high .586 hitting percentage. On Senior Night, Erica Treiber earned her first career double-double with 16 kills and a career high 11 blocks. Alyssa Andreno had 6 blocks, while Addisyn Rowe and Grubbs had 3 each. Callie Williams led the team with 25 assists; Sedona Hansen added 19 more. Madison Coulter had 16 digs, Brooke Schumacher 14, and Hansen 12 (and the double-double).
Treiber’s 2 aces bring her to 43 on the year — that’s 1 short of 3rd on the rally-scoring era season aces chart, and 3 short of 2nd place.
Treiber’s double-double was just the 4th in the last decade to feature blocks.
With today’s win, Tennessee will either tie for the 3rd fewest losses in a season in school history or (if they win the national championship!) have the 3rd fewest losses in a season outright.
The Lady Vols finish conference play with 11 wins in a row, matching the school record.
It’s the final regular season match of the year which means it’s time to honor the seniors: Breana Jeter, Brooke Schumacher, Stephanie Spencer, and Erica Treiber. I’ll be writing more about them next week, but be sure to head out to the game to give them a proper send-off!
NOTE: The schedule originally listed this as a 3pm match. It now says the match starts at 1pm.
Tennessee is 44-10 vs Mississippi all-time. UT is 6-4 in their last ten overall matches and 8-2 in the last ten matches in Knoxville.
Of all the teams in the conference, UT has their best record against the Rebels with a .815 winning percentage.
Since 1997, the Lady Vols are 15-6 on Senior Day.
In the rally-scoring era, Tennessee is 2-5 in Saturday matches in November.
In the last match between the teams earlier this season, UT’s Erica Treiber and UM’s Emily Stroup both recorded the 1,000th kill of their careers.
Back in March of this year I mentioned that I had updated the coaching milestones stats page so that it would now track Eve Rackham’s records. I jokingly wondered whether she could reach the first milestone on the page in 2018 — 25 wins — adding “no pressure!” Apparently there wasn’t any because she is one win away from doing it!
The Lady Vols have reached 25 wins 11 times in program history, the last time being in 2011. A win over Mississippi would mark the third fastest the team reached that milestone.
Tennessee has won 13 home matches this season so far. A win over Mississippi would tie for the third most since 1978.
A win over Mississippi would give UT its 16th SEC win, tying for the second most in school history. It would be their third best conference mark by winning percentage.
This match is Second Harvest Night. You can bring a donation of 2 canned food items to get free admission.
14-17, 4-13 SEC
Saturday, November 24, 1:00pm ET
Knoxville TN // Online Stream // Live Stats
The Lady Vols earned their biggest win in years with a 3-0 victory over #13 Florida! The win clinches at least a share of a second place finish in the SEC! This was just the second sweep of the Gators in program history and the first since 1988! Much more soon!
UPDATE: Danielle Mahaffey led both teams with 11 kills and a .450 hitting percentage. Erica Treiber had 10 kills and led both sides with 5 blocks. Lily Felts once again just missed a double-double with 9 kills and 9 digs. Sedona Hansen led both teams with 19 assists. Callie Williams picked up her first double-double of the year with 18 assists and 13 digs. Madison Coulter also had 13 digs.
Tennessee held all of Florida’s players to single digit kills. The last time a winning opponent did that to Florida was 2010 (Purdue in the NCAA Tourney).
The Lady Vols held Florida to a .118 hitting percentage — that’s the second lowest UT has held a ranked opponent in the rally scoring era.
UT held the Gators to their second lowest hitting percentage and second lowest statistical points scored all season.
The Lady Vols notched the fifth highest hitting percentage of all Florida’s opponents this season.
Florida came into the match ranked 37th in the country in aces. UT held them to a one — a season low for UF.
Tennessee won their 10th consecutive match of the season for the first time since 2015. It’s UT’s longest SEC winning streak since 2011.
UT is now 4-3 vs ranked opponents this year.
This was the team’s first sweep of a ranked opponent since 2010, and just the 4th since 2001.
In rally-scoring era matches where both teams are ranked, Florida and Tennessee are tied 4-4.
With Kentucky’s win tonight, Tennessee will officially finish the season in second place in the SEC. In the preseason coaches poll they were picked to finish tenth. Since 2014 (when the preseason poll stopped using divisions), that’s the biggest jump by any team from prediction to actual result.
With 2,116 people on hand, this was the 3rd highest attended match in school history.
The Lady Vols are 6-3 in Thanksgiving Eve matches and an undefeated 4-0 when playing a ranked opponent.
UT STORY // UF STORY
It’s the final week of the regular season! And a holiday week as well! Today we’ll look at the first match of the week vs #13 Florida.
Tennessee is 13-50-1 vs Florida all-time. UT is 2-8 in their last ten overall matches and 2-8 in the last ten matches in Knoxville.
The Gators currently have an 8 match winning streak vs the Lady Vols.
This will be the 9th match in school history played the day before Thanksgiving (with 8 of those matches coming in the last decade). UT is 5-3 — but an undefeated 3-0 when playing a ranked opponent.
When Tennessee wins a set vs Florida, they usually win the match. The team is 13-11-1 in those situations.
If the match heads to a fifth set, the odds are even more in Tennessee’s favor. In the 9 all-time five-set matches between the teams, UT has won 7 of them.
Coming into the season only one team (Kentucky) has more wins vs Florida over the past ten years than Tennessee.
Both teams are ranked coming in to the match for the first time since 2011. Tennessee won that meeting. In the rally-scoring era, they’ve played each other while ranked 7 times with Florida barely holding a 4-3 advantage.
Tennessee is 3-3 vs ranked opponents this season. Florida is 1-3.
While the Gators and Lady Vols are tied for second place in the SEC, because the conference now plays an unbalanced schedule, UF has had an easier road so far. Florida has only played 4 matches vs the current top 6 teams in the conference and has a 2-2 record against them. Tennessee has played 7 matches vs the current top 6 teams in the conference and has a 5-2 record against them.
With a victory today, Florida would earn their 24th win of the season — a feat they have accomplished for 28 consecutive years.
Tennessee is looking for their 10th consecutive win of the season. The last time they did that was 2015. However, this run is all league matches. The last time UT won ten SEC games in a row was 2011.
(Just because it’s been so long since I got to do a stat like this, here goes!) With a win vs Florida today and a win vs Mississippi on Saturday, and with Kentucky losing their match tonight vs South Carolina and Saturday against Auburn, Tennessee would win a share of the SEC Championship!
— AVCA Coaches Poll: 22
— NCAA RPI: 29
— Pablo Ranking: 22
— RickKern.com: 22
— PrepVolleyball: 18
— VolleyTalk: 20
— Massey Ratings: 17
23-5, 14-2 SEC
Wednesday, November 21, 5:00pm ET
Knoxville TN // Online Stream // Live Stats
NATIONAL & CONFERENCE STATISTICAL RANKS
Tennessee improved their winning streak to nine with a 3-1 victory over Arkansas this afternoon (25-23, 19-25, 25-20, 25-23). More tonight…
UPDATE: Erica Treiber led the team with 18 kills; Tessa Grubbs was just behind with 17. Addisyn Rowe put down 12. Treiber and Rowe hit over .400. Rowe had 5 blocks and Treiber had 4. Sedona Hansen scored her 45th career double-double with 28 assists and 12 digs. Callie Williams had 21 assists. Madison Coulter dug up 20 or more ball for the 5th time this year. Lily Felts just missed a double-double with 13 digs and 9 kills. Brooke Schumacher had 12 digs.
The Lady Vols got a huge victory tonight, defeating #23 Missouri 3-1 (19-25, 25-21, 25-22, 25-12). A lot more coming soon!
UPDATE: Tessa Grubbs led the team with 20 kills — the 7th time she’s reached that milestone this year. Rocky Perinar had a big night with 11. Erica Treiber had 9, Lily Felts 8, and Danielle Mahaffey 6. Addisyn Row and Treiber had 4 blocks each. With a mid-match switch to a 5-1, Sedona Hansen put up 48 of the team’s 55 assists. Madison Coulter had 15 digs. Hansen completed the double-double with 11. And Asha Phillips had 9.
Treiber’s 3 aces in the match brought her season total to 41. She’s just the 3rd Lady Vol in the rally-scoring era to reach 40 aces in a year.
The win is Tennessee’s 3rd over a ranked opponent this season, a feat they hadn’t accomplished since 2012.
The victory guarantees UT’s 2018 season will only have single digit losses for just the 11th time in program history.
The Lady Vols held the Tigers to 12 points in the final set — that’s the 9th fewest a conference opponent has scored vs UT since 2001, but the 3rd time they’ve done it this season! It’s the lowest Tennessee has held a ranked opponent (SEC or not) in a set during that time.
This was UT’s first ever win at Missouri.
Tennessee has now won 8 matches in a row — all SEC games.
Here are a few extra items of interest for tonight’s match vs Missouri. Be sure to check out the original notes I posted Saturday.
Tennessee will be attempting to win their 8th match in a row for the first time since 2015. The last time the team won 8 SEC matches in a row was 2011.
As mentioned in Saturday’s notes, Missouri and Tennessee did remain ranked in this week’s Coaches Poll, which makes this match the first UT game featuring two ranked teams since August 31, 2012, and the first ranked UT vs ranked MU matchup since the teams’ first two meetings in 2005.
Tonight’s match will air on the SEC Network. UT is 4-2 on TV this season. This will be the 7th Lady Vol match to be televised in 2018 — a regular season record for the team.
Tessa Grubbs was named the SEC Offensive Player of the Week for the second time this season. She’s the first Lady Vol to earn a repeat weekly award since Erica Treiber picked up two Freshman on the Week honors in 2015, and the first to get a second Offensive award at Tennessee since Leslie Cikra in 2012.
A Michigan newspaper has a great article about Tennessee senior Erica Treiber.
men’sathletic director Phil Fulmer penned an open letter to Vol fans about the school’s successful weekend of footballsports.
Here’s where Tennessee stands in the latest rankings:
— AVCA Coaches Poll: 22
— NCAA RPI: 32
— Pablo Ranking: 28
— RickKern.com: 25
— PrepVolleyball: 20
— VolleyTalk: 20
I prefer to keep the personal lives of the players and coaches out of this blog. But you couldn’t not notice coach Eve Rackham’s absence on the sideline Sunday. The online streaming commentators noted that Tyler Adams was the “acting head coach” and that Rackham was “on leave” and would “be back to coach some of the home matches down the stretch of the season”. Tennessee has chosen not to reveal anything publicly, so here’s hoping everything is well with her and that we’ll see her back as soon as possible!
Tennessee picked up a 3-0 (25-22, 26-24, 25-15) win in Starkville this afternoon, earning their 7th victory in a row.
With the win, Tennessee will finish the season with 10 or fewer losses for the 15th time in school history.
UPDATE: Tessa Grubbs dominated the match with 22 kills — just a single kill off the UT rally-scoring record for a three-set match. She hit .571, just .008 off her career high. Addisyn Rowe had 12 kills while hitting .421. Lily Felts had 9 kills. And Erica Treiber had 8 while hitting .438. Four players had 2 blocks each: Treiber, Rowe, Alyssa Andreno, and Danielle Mahaffey. Brooke Schumacher was the only player on either side of the court to reach double digit digs with 11. Sedona Hansen led the team with 37 assists and Callie Williams added 13 more.
For the 6th time this season, UT didn’t allow a single opposing player to reach double digit kills.
Mississippi State only had 10 hitting errors on the match — that ties the 10th fewest by a UT opponent in the rally scoring era. This match marks just the 2nd time an opponent has lost with 10 or less hitting errors in that time.
MSU’s .260 hitting percentage was the 16th best by a UT opponent in a losing effort since 2001. Two other losing Tennessee opponents had higher hitting matches earlier this season.
Tennessee has only five games remaining in the regular season: the next three on the road and the last two at home. Today’s notes will cover the away matches at Mississippi State, Missouri, and Arkansas.
Tennessee is 45-12 vs Mississippi State. The teams are tied 5-5 in their last ten matches. UT has a 6-4 advantage in the last ten matches in Starkville.
Tennessee is 4-8 vs Missouri. UT has never won in Columbia.
Tennessee is 20-20 vs Arkansas. The Razorbacks have a 6-4 advantage in their last ten matches. But UT leads 6-4 in the last ten matches in Fayetteville.
Tennessee will be attempting to win their 7th match in a row on Sunday for the first time since 2015. The last time the team won 7 SEC matches in a row was 2012.
The Lady Vols have faced all three of these teams earlier in the year in Knoxville, and went 3-0. The MSU match was a sweep, while the other two matches went to five sets.
Tennessee has played Mississippi State 57 times in program history — that’s the 6th most UT has played any team. They’ve won 45 of those matches — the 2nd most wins they have against any single team. Of those wins, a school record 31 of them were by sweeps.
If #24 Missouri and #23 Tennessee win their Sunday games and remain ranked in the next Coaches Poll, their match on Wednesday would be the first UT game featuring two ranked teams since August 31, 2012. It would be the first ranked UT vs ranked MU matchup since the teams’ first two meetings in 2005.
The Lady Vols won the first ever matchup with Arkansas in 1994. Tennessee didn’t have a winning all-time record again vs the Razorbacks until 2011. They lost the advantage again in 2014. With a win in their next match, UT would regain the all-time lead with a 21-20 record.
UT currently is tied for 2nd in the SEC with Florida. The Lady Vols can finish no lower than 5th this season. Even that lower placement would be a big improvement — over the past five years the team has finished 7th, 8th, 11th, and 13th twice.
— AVCA Coaches Poll: 23
— NCAA RPI: 28
— Pablo Ranking: 23
— RickKern.com: 27
— PrepVolleyball: 20
— VolleyTalk: 21
MISSISSIPPI STATE BULLDOGS
5-21, 1-12 SEC
Sunday, November 11, 2:00pm ET
Starkville MS // Online Stream // Live Stats
#24 MISSOURI TIGERS
21-5, 11-3 SEC
Wednesday, November 14, 7:00pm ET
Columbia MO // Online Stream // Live Stats
11-12, 5-8 SEC
Sunday, November 18, 2:00pm ET
Fayetteville AR // Online Stream // Live Stats
NATIONAL & CONFERENCE STATISTICAL RANKS
Tennessee got win #20 with a victory over Texas A&M this evening (25-21, 25-12, 23-25, 25-19). More tonight.
Tessa Grubbs led both teams with 18 kills. Lily Felts had 10, Erica Treiber 8, and Addisyn Rowe and Danielle Mahaffey 7 each. Five players hit over .350 with at least five attempts: Rowe at .500, Treiber at .467, Alyssa Andreno at .429, Mahaffey at .375, and Grubbs at .361. Only one UT match since 2001 had more players do that. The team had a very slow start blocking but eventually found the floor. Treiber led the team with 4; Andreno had 2. Sedona Hansen put up 26 assists and Callie Williams had 19. Brooke Schumacher led the team in digs with 12.
Tennessee has won 20 matches in a season for the first time since 2015, the 11th time in the rally-scoring era, and the 23rd time in program history.
The Lady Vols got their 20th win in their 25th match of the year — that ties for the fifth fastest time to the milestone in school history.
Tennessee earned their 10th SEC win of the year, and their 5th in a row, with a four-set victory over Mississippi (21-25, 25-21, 26-24, 25-23).
With Missouri’s loss to South Carolina earlier in the evening, the Lady Vols are now in a tie with Florida for second place in the conference.
Tessa Grubbs paced the offense with 22 kills. Addisyn Rowe had 17. Erica Treiber had 14 while hitting .565. Rocky Perinar and Danielle Mahaffey also hit over .300 on the night. Treiber led the team in blocking with 5, with Rowe and Mahaffey just behind with 4. Sedona Hansen had 34 assists while Callie Williams added 21 more. Madison Coulter picked up 15 digs and Brooke Schumacher had 11.
Treiber became the 20th Lady Vol in program history to reach 1,000 kills. She also moved into a tie for 4th place all-time at UT for career blocks.
UM’s Emily Stroup had 31 kills, the 4th most by a UT opponent in the rally scoring era, and the most since 2007. Stroup also recorded her 1,000th career kill in the match.
Mississippi notched a .273 hitting percentage, the 9th highest by a opponent in the rally scoring era when losing the match.
Sorry for the late post. I’m having some computer issues so these notes will be abbreviated! If I can get back up and running soon I may try to flesh them out.
Tennessee is 43-10 vs Mississippi. They are 6-4 in both their last ten matches and their last ten matches in Oxford.
Tennessee is 7-10 vs Texas A&M. They are 2-8 in their last ten matches and 2-5 all-time in Knoxville.
With a win over the Rebels, UT would have 5 conference wins in a row for the first time since 2012. They’d also have 10 SEC wins for the first time since 2012 as well.
The Lady Vols are currently half-a-game out of second place in the league standings.
In the rally-scoring era, Tennessee is:
— 107-30 when ranked
— 95-15 when ranked and their opponent is not
— 1-4 when ranked #25
— 7-0 vs Mississippi when ranked
— 1-0 vs Texas A&M when ranked
During the time-formerly-known-as-intermission during the Tennessee match vs the Aggies, the NCAA Selection Committee is going to reveal a list of the top ten teams if the tournament were being held this week.
? BREAKING ?
The #NCAAVB Selection Committee will reveal the Top 10 teams between the second and third sets of the Texas A&M vs Tennessee match on ESPNU on November 4th at 5 p.m. ET!
This will be the ONLY in season reveal before the entire bracket is announced! pic.twitter.com/CZwjXDQbFg
— NCAA Volleyball (@NCAAVolleyball) November 1, 2018
I’ve had a page on the stats page compiling SEC Players of the Week by team for several years. This week I updated it so you can now view them by years as well.