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Northwestern & Morningside to compete in NAIA tournament

SIOUX CITY (KTIV) — Over the last 25 years Sioux City has hosted NAIA national championships for baseball, softball, wrestling, women’s basketball and volleyball. It’s volleyball that gets the spotlight this week as the tournament returns for the 12th consecutive year.

Thrity-two teams will compete this week at the Tyson Events Center. Northwestern and Morningside are the Siouxland teams in the field. There are eight pools, with four teams each with the top two teams from each pool advancing to the next round. Each team will play three matches, starting Tuesday.

There will be over 12 hours of non-stop action over the first three days

“When we first bid this here in 2008 we really thought this was a place that would embrace it,” said Co-Tournament Director Corey Westra. “Those first few years you get used to having it and now it’s almost becoming like the basketball tournament where March is for basketball and early December, early November is for volleyball. It’s been a great thing for this community.”

“It’s just such an awesome environment,” said Ottawa University Head Coach Melissa Blessington. “This is an awesome arena to play in number one and number two, you have people from all over the United States getting to come here and play and there’s some great level of volleyball here so it’s really exciting.”

Northwestern College is the number-2 overall seed. The Red Raiders are the top seed in pool “B”, with a 28-1 overall record. Northwestern’s first match is against unranked Martin Methodist of Tennessee on Tuesday at 6:30.

Morningisde will face the defending national champion and top-ranked Park University of Missouri on Tuesday afternoon at 3:00. The 16-11 Mustangs are in as the host school, and are making their fourth straight national tournament appearance.

Brad Pautsch

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