Grizzlies volleyball to open 2022-23 season at home | Grizzlies UM

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MISSOULA — For the first time in eight years, and only the fourth time in the past two decades, Montana will open its volleyball season in Missoula, hosting the Farmers State Bank Invitational Aug. 26-27. The Grizzlies announced their full schedule Thursday afternoon, including 11 home games.

Friday, August 26 is the first permitted competition date for the 2022 volleyball season, and Montana is wasting no time, hosting North Dakota at 10 a.m. to kick off the two-day tournament. Additionally, Montana will host UT Arlington and UC Davis in the round robin, which will include six games in Missoula.

This fall will mark the second straight season that Montana and North Dakota will meet on the net. A season ago in Grand Forks, the Grizzlies swept past foes Big Sky to win the UND Classic title. Montana has played at UT Arlington three times before, but none since 1995, and has played at UC Davis four times before, most recently in 2019.

The weekend will feature a grand opening test for the Grizzlies. UT Arlington and UC Davis qualified for the NIVC post-season tournament as recently as 2019, while North Dakota won 30 games and qualified for the NCAA tournament in 2017, the final season of the Fighting Hawks in the Big Sky.

In Montana’s other three non-conference weekends, the Grizzlies will cross the country, traveling to Indianapolis, Indiana (1,734 miles), Edinburg, Texas (2,043) and Charleston, South Carolina (2,443).

Hosted by IUPUI, the Hampton Inn Invitational (September 2-3) will feature a wide range of contestants.

Montana will open the weekend against Drake, consistently one of the best teams in the Missouri Valley Conference. It will be the third time in the past six seasons that the Grizzlies and Bulldogs will meet, with Griz’s 3-2 win last year being one of Montana’s season-highlights. Montana lost the first two sets before rallying to win the last three. Later that night, the Grizzlies defeated North Dakota to claim their first tournament title since 2006.

A day after facing Drake, Montana will face Saint Francis – a Northeastern Conference team from Pennsylvania – for the second time in program history and face host IUPUI for the first time.

The third weekend of the season (September 9-10) will be special for senior Jackie Howell, who will play just minutes from her hometown of Mission, Texas. The Grizzlies will face Prairie View A&M and UT Rio Grande Valley (twice), both for the first time in school history.

During the Spring 2021 season, Prairie View A&M went 11-1 in the SWAC. UT Rio Grande Valley went 17-11 a season ago, qualifying for the NIVC postseason tournament.

Montana’s final non-conference weekend will be in Charleston, South Carolina, for a tournament hosted by Charleston Southern (September 16-17). The details for the weekend are still being formalized. The Grizzlies have faced the Buccaneers once before, a Griz win in 2002, but know the area well, traveling to Charleston just a season ago for a tournament hosted by the College of Charleston.

Montana’s Big Sky conference schedule was announced earlier this spring and will feature 16 games, beginning Sept. 22 in northern Arizona. Since release, however, there have been a handful of changes. Both games against Montana State have been moved to Friday nights, including in Missoula on Nov. 11, the day before Montana football’s home game against Eastern Washington.

Additionally, the 2022 Big Sky Conference tournament, to be held in Ogden, Utah, will now take place Nov. 23-26, with quarterfinal matches taking place on Wednesday before a Thursday off day for Thanksgiving and the resumption of the action Friday. and Saturday.

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