May 20, 2009

Conference Carolinas to Be First NCAA Division II League to Introduce Men's Volleyball

HIGH POINT, N.C. -- Conference Carolinas will introduce men's volleyball as a new conference emerging sport for the 2010 spring season. The league will be the first and only comprised of just NCAA DII institutions, as well as the first and only league under an actual NCAA supported conference. Conference Carolinas becomes a pioneer in influencing the future of the men's volleyball national championships.


"This is tremendous for men's volleyball across the country," said. Jamie Petrik, the Lees-McRae men's volleyball coach. "A new conference, a new championship, and with the addition of one more team, we will bid for a spot in the NCAA championships, most likely causing an expansion to eight teams."

Five teams will make up the league in its inaugural season. Current institutions in Conference Carolinas who field teams are Lees-McRae College and Mount Olive College. They will be joined by fellow league members Limestone College and Pfeiffer University who will support teams for the first year in program history. King College will round-out the conference as an associate league member. The Tornado, who will be fielding a team for their third upcoming season, and will be welcomed into the league with full men's volleyball membership privileges.

"Conference Carolinas new commitment to men's volleyball is very exciting," said Pfeiffer head coach and men's volleyball league coaches' chairperson Ben Guiliano. "Between the additions of new programs at Limestone and Pfeiffer, the addition of King College and the existing teams at Mount Olive and Lees-McRae, the foundation for a viable volleyball culture is solid."

The league will be just the fourth conference on the men's volleyball national scene and will compete against Division I, Division II and Division III competition. The other Division I and Division II men's volleyball conferences are the Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (EIVA), the Midwest Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (MIVA), and the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF).

Conference regular season competition will be played using a double-round robin format, with teams playing each other twice during the year. Regular season play will determine the top two teams and seeds that will play each other for the conference championship in a one game playoff. The inaugural men's volleyball conference championship will be hosted by the highest seeded team on Saturday April 17, 2010.

"Conference Carolinas is excited be the first NCAA DII only conference to add Men's Volleyball as an emerging sport," Conference Commissioner Alan Patterson said. "It affords the opportunity for many terrific high school players to continue competing at a high level in an exciting and fast moving sport. Men's volleyball is a welcome addition to the Conference Carolinas family of sports."

Conference Carolinas sponsors championship sports in men's & women's cross country, men's & women's soccer, men's & women's volleyball, men's & women's basketball, baseball, softball, men's & women's tennis, men's & women's golf, men's & women's lacrosse and men's & women's outdoor track & field. Members of the league include: Anderson University (Anderson, SC); Barton College (Wilson, NC); Belmont Abbey College (Belmont, NC); Coker College (Hartsville, SC); Converse College (Spartanburg, SC); Erskine College (Due West, SC); Lees-McRae College (Banner Elk, NC); Limestone College (Gaffney, SC); Mount Olive College (Mount Olive, NC); Pfeiffer University (Misenheimer, NC); Queens University of Charlotte (Charlotte, NC); and St. Andrews Presbyterian College (Laurinburg, NC). King College (Bristol, TN) is an associate member in men's volleyball.

Conference Carolinas is a proud member of the NCAA and Division II. Division II is a dynamic and engaging group of colleges, institutions, and conferences of varying sizes and educational missions. Division II members encourage and support diversity; value sportsmanship, fairness and equity; and place the highest priority on the overall educational excellence of the student-athlete.