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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – For the first time since the 2012 season the Wentworth Institute of Technology women's volleyball team has earned a berth in the Commonwealth Coast Conference Tournament. And, for the first time in program history, the Leopards (23-5, 5-4) will host a conference tournament match as the fourth-seeded Leopards will host fifth-seeded Salve Regina (16-10, 5-4) on Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. in a quarterfinal match.
Endicott earned the tournament's top seed for the first time since the 2009 season as the Gulls ran the table in league play (9-0) and are 19-11 on the season. The Gulls will host eighth-seeded Curry in a quarterfinal round contest.
Seven-time defending champion Roger Williams (9-7, 8-1) is the tournament's second seed and will host seventh-seeded University of New England (13-12, 3-6). Third-seeded Western New England (19-9, 7-2) will host sixth-seeded Gordon (13-14, 5-4) in the fourth quarterfinal.
Wentworth, Salve Regina and Gordon all had 5-4 conference records, so tiebreakers were needed to determine seeding. All three teams were 1-1 in the head-to-head comparison offering no relief in breaking the deadlock. The next step was comparing their results against the other conference opponents in rank order, but the tie remained as they all beat and lost to the same teams. The teams were then evaluated by results against common non-conference opponents. All three teams played Wheaton and Salem State and earned victories. The tie was finally broken in the fourth tiebreaker, winning percentage against all opponents with a .500 or better winning percentage. The Leopards went 7-4 (.636 winning percentage) in those matches compared to Gordon's 4-13 (.235) and Salve Regina's 3-10 (.231), giving the Black & Gold the number four seed.
The procedure began again to break the Salve Regina-Gordon tie with the Seahawks earning the No. 5-seed having defeated Fighting Scots during the regular season.
The four semifinal winners will advance to the semifinal round, which will take place on Thursday, Nov. 3. The winner of the Endicott-Curry match will play the winner of the Wentworth-Salve Regina match and the Roger Williams-UNE winner will play the Western New England-Gordon winner.
Tuesday night will be the 18th all-time meeting between the two programs with Salve Regina holding a 12-5 series advantage. Wentworth snapped a 12-match series losing streak with a 3-0 win on Sept. 27. This marks the third time the two schools will meet in the postseason with the Seahawks claiming the two previous meetings.
2016 COMMONWEALTH COAST CONFERENCE WOMEN'S VOLLEYBALL TOURNAMENT
(Matches hosted by the higher seed)
Quarterfinals – Tuesday, Nov. 1
#8 Curry at #1 Endicott, 7 p.m.
#7 University of New England at #2 Roger Williams, 7 p.m.
#6 Gordon at #3 Western New England, 7 p.m.
#5 Salve Regina at #4 Wentworth, 7 p.m.
Semifinals – Thursday, Nov. 3
#1/8 winner vs. #4/5 winner, TBA
#2/7 winner vs. #3/6, TBA
Finals – Saturday, Nov. 5
Semifinal winners at higher seed, TBA