Ferris volleyball team ranked 20th

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BIG RAPIDS — Ferris State University’s women’s volleyball team will open the 2022 season as one of the top teams in the nation as the Bulldogs were ranked 20th in the U.S. Division II national rankings. American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) announced Wednesday.

The Bulldogs, who have won seven of the last eight Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) tournament championships, earned 205 total points on the year’s national opening slate.

In the preseason poll, Tampa garnered 41 first-place votes and 1,158 total points in drawing the first nod followed by Washburn with 1,050 points. Western Washington finished third (985) followed by MSU Denver (965) and West Florida (854) in the top five overall.

The Bulldogs were ranked second among Midwest Region teams in the national standings with Hillsdale selected 16th in the nation ahead of FSU with 466 points. Ferris State and Michigan Tech, ranked 23rd, were the only GLIAC member schools listed in the top 25.

Last fall, Ferris State compiled an impressive 27-5 overall record and a berth in the NCAA Division II Midwest Region Championship Game. The Bulldogs also captured the GLIAC South Division Championship and won the GLIAC Tournament in a memorable playoff run that included FSU serving as the top seed and hosting the Midwest Regional Tournament.

Ferris State has currently made 10 straight NCAA Tournament appearances and has qualified for at least nine regional semifinals in the last 10 years. FSU’s 2021 regional appearance represented the program’s 25th all-time NCAA offering.

The 2021 campaign marked the 19th time in 26 seasons under head coach Tia Brandel-Wilhelm in which FSU had won at least 20 wins in one campaign. The Bulldogs made their 24th consecutive appearance at the GLIAC tournament last fall.

This fall, the Bulldogs will celebrate Ferris State Volleyball’s 50th season and play home games inside Jim Wink Arena before potentially moving into the new Bulldog Arena later this fall. FSU will open the 2022 campaign at the Western Washington Invitational on August 25-26 before competing in the Hillsdale Charger Invitational on September 1-2. Game 1 at home is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 9 against Wisconsin-Parkside as the Bulldogs open up Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) action.

Overall, Ferris State has won a GLIAC regular season championship and won the conference postseason tournament seven of the past eight seasons.

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