The Missouri volleyball team received the No. 4 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament and will host the first two rounds of the event, starting Friday at the Hearnes Center.
The Tigers earned their 11th trip to the tournament in the 14 seasons under the leadership of Wayne and Susan Kreklow. The fourth overall seed is the best ever for the Tigers, who are ranked fourth in this week's American Volleyball Coaches Association Top 25.
Missouri, which went a perfect 34-0 in the regular season, including 18-0 in the Southeastern Conference, will welcome IUPUI, Central Arkansas and Purdue in the event.
"This is obviously a big day for our program and opportunities like what we have now are why you compete and why you put in so many hours of preparation all year," said Wayne Kreklow, the Missouri head coach. "It really is an honor to play the first and second rounds here in the Columbia as well. Our fans have been phenomenal all year long and this is almost like a reward for them as they get to see our team a few more times this season.
"We drew a tough field here in the opening weekend, so we are going to have to prepare as we did all season long, but I am excited about the opportunity that is ahead of us."
The event gets under way at 4:30 p.m. Friday when Purdue (20-11) and Central Arkansas (27-3) go at it. That match will be followed by Missouri against IUPUI (19-13) at 6:30 p.m.
The winners will then met at 7:30 p.m. Saturday to determine which team will advance on to the regional semifinals and final, which will be held Dec. 13-14 in Champaign, Ill.