Men’s Volleyball EIVA Championship
Penn State will host the Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association men’s volleyball championship on Thursday and Saturday and are the favorites to win the title for the eleventh consecutive time. However, if the regular season was any indication, the team will have to play at or near their best to win the title.
On Thursday, Penn State will take on Springfield College. The winner will advance to play either Princeton or George Mason on Saturday. The winner of the championship game will get one of the three guaranteed berths to the NCAA semifinals.
This season, the EIVA championship is even more important to Penn State than in years past. The Nittany Lions are only ranked twelfth nationally and will not earn the one at-large bid to the NCAA tournament. Therefore, winning this weekend is a must. Despite being the favorites and winning so often in the conference, Penn State cannot be overconfident about the tournament.
Penn State has a 21-7 record this year (23-7 if you count two wins over Laval, a Canadian team), which included good wins over Hawaii and UC Irvine. However, they have suffered several embarrassing loses, including Ohio State at home and Loyola-Chicago and Rutgers-Newark on the road. Penn State’s other four loses came from strong competition from the western part of the country. At times this season, the team has seemed out of sync or disinterested, which the inconsistent results have shown.
The bad losses during the regular season can be forgotten by winning the EIVA championship and making it to the NCAA tournament, though. So, at 8 p.m. on Thursday in Rec Hall, go support the men’s volleyball team in their quest to win their eleventh consecutive EIVA championship.