Volleyball Opens BIG EAST Tournament Friday versus Pittsburgh

Nov. 19, 2008

BIG EAST Tournament Notes Get Acrobat Reader

BIG EAST TOURNAMENT: Cincinnati travels to the BIG EAST Tournament as the No. 2 seed and the Bearcats face off with No. 7 seed, and tournament host, Pittsburgh, at 6 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 21 at Fitzgerald Field House. St. John's enters the tournament as the No. 1 seed, and the Red Storm take on No. 8 USF at 12:30 p.m. No. 3 Louisville meets No. 6 Syracuse at 3:30 p.m., and the tournament kicks off when No. 4 Connecticut squares off with No. 5 Notre Dame at 10 a.m. All quarterfinal matches will be played on Friday, Nov. 21.

BIG EAST TOURNAMENT CENTRAL: Live stats, recaps, and box scores for all matches at the BIG EAST Tournament will be available on www.BIGEAST.org. on the Championship Central page. Click here to go to the Championship Central page. All four quarterfinal matches and both semifinal matches can be viewed on BIGEAST.tv through www.BIGEAST.org. To sign up for BIGEAST.tv, click here. Finally, fans can purchase photos from the banquet and all matches courtesy of the BIG EAST Photo Store.

FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING: With a three-set win over Rutgers and a St. John's loss at DePaul on Sunday, Nov. 16, Cincinnati earned a share of the program's first regular-season BIG EAST Championship. The regular-season championship is the second for the school, as the men's soccer team won a BIG EAST division championship in 2006.

LEADING THE PACK: Senior Jessie Nevitt finished the regular-season as the only player in the conference to rank in the Top 10 in hitting percentage, blocks, and kills in overall and conference-only contests. In overall contests, Nevitt ranks first in hitting percentage (.419), third in blocks (1.31), and seventh in kills (3.32). In conference-only matches, Nevitt sits in first in hitting percentage (.461), third in blocks (1.30), and sixth in kills (3.54).

WINNING WAYS: With a three-set sweep over Rutgers on Nov. 16, Cincinnati moved to 12-2 in BIG EAST action. The 12 wins are the most BIG EAST wins for a Cincinnati team since the Bearcats joined the BIG EAST in 2005. Cincinnati won nine conference matches in 2005, 10 in 2006, and nine last season.

NOTHING LIKE HOME: The Bearcats improved to 14-0 at home with a three-set win over Rutgers on Nov. 16. It is the second time in school history that the Bearcats have gone undefeated at home in a season. The 2003 UC team went 13-0 at home. The 14 home wins this season are also the most home wins in a single season in program history.

HISTORY LESSON: Senior Jessie Nevitt solidified herself as the top blocker in the University of Cincinnati volleyball history during Cincinnati's wins over Syracuse and Marquette at the end of October . Nevitt moved ahead of Stephanie Meinig (1997-00) on the career block assists chart and the total blocks chart and she currently owns 554 block assists and 628 total blocks. Nevitt recently eclipsed the 1,400 career kills plateau, making her just the second player in BIG EAST history to have over 1,400 kills and 600 total blocks in a career. The only other player to accomplish the feat was Notre Dame's Lauren Brewster (2002-05), who finished her career with 1,475 kills and 734 total blocks.

CINCINNATI AT THE TOURNAMENT: Cincinnati is 1-3 when playing in the BIG EAST Tournament. In each of the last three years, UC has been knocked out by Notre Dame. The Bearcats lone win in the BIG EAST Tournament was a four-set victory over St. John's in 2005.

ABOUT PITTSBURGH: The Panthers enter the BIG EAST Tournament as the No. 7 seed after posting an 8-6 conference record. Kelly Campbell leads PITT averaging 3.56 kps, while Michelle Rossi anchors the defense with 4.16 dps.

THE SERIES WITH THE PANTHERS: Pittsburgh owns a 7-5 edge in the all-time series between the two schools, and the series is tied at 2-2 when playing in Pittsburgh. UC defeated Pittsburgh, 3-0, at Fitzgerald Field House on Nov. 9.