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UC Irvine kicks off NCAA preseason with its international tournament

September 26, 2011

UC Irvine will open the college men’s volleyball preseason Monday at its annual international tournament.

UC Irvine will play Beijing BAIC Motor, a professional team from China, at 7 p.m. Monday in its pool-play opener at the 2011 Irvine International Volleyball Tournament.

The Irvine International Volleyball Tournament is a six-day tournament and is the only preseason tournament that features a college men’s volleyball team playing professional teams from around the world. Six of the eight teams participating in the preseason tournament are international squads.

The eight teams will compete in two four-team pools to open the tournament.

SADA Cruzeiro from Brazil, Korean Air Jumbos, Shanghai Tang Dynasty from China and the Quiksilver volleyball club from California will compete in Pool A. UC Irvine will play in Pool B along with Drean Bolivar from Argentina, Toray Arrows from Japan and Beijing BAIC Motor.

The top two teams in each pool after the three-match pool-play round will advance to the semifinals on Friday, while the third and fourth-place teams will play in consolation matches.

This is the most team to participate in the three-year history of the UC Irvine international tournament. The Anteaters had five teams compete at the event last year.

UC Irvine was 1-3 in its home tournament last season and finished in fourth place.

UC Irvine has three starters returning for the upcoming season. The Anteaters ended the 2011 regular season in fourth place in the MPSF and lost in the conference tournament semifinals.

Several UC Irvine players enter this preseason after gaining international playing experience during the offseason.

All-American outside attacker Carson Clark played for the United States at the World University Games, while middle attacker Scott Kevorken helped lead the U.S. Men’s Junior National Team to a fourth-place finish at the World Championship. In addition, outside attacker Connor Hughes represented the United States in beach volleyball at the World University Games.

This is the first time Beijing BAIC Motor has competed at the Irvine International Volleyball Tournament.

The Irvine International Volleyball Tournament is the first preseason tournament for any Division I-II men’s volleyball team.

Tickets for the pool-play round of the Irvine International Volleyball Tournament are $10 for a daily pass and $30 for the four-day pass.

Tournament Schedule

Monday
3 p.m. Brazil vs. Shanghai
5 p.m. Korea vs. Quiksilver
7 p.m. UC Irvine vs. Beijing

Tuesday
3 p.m. Argentina vs. Beijing
5 p.m. UC Irvine vs. Japan
7 p.m. Korea vs. Shanghai

Wednesday
3 p.m. Japan vs. Beijing
5 p.m. Brazil vs. Quiksilver
7 p.m. UC Irvine vs. Argentina

Thursday
3 p.m. Argentina vs. Japan
5 p.m. Quiksilver vs Shanghai
7 p.m. Brazil vs. Korea

Friday
1 p.m. Pool A 4th Place vs. Pool B 3rd Place
3 p.m. Pool A 3rd Place vs. Pool B 4th Place
6 p.m. Pool A 2nd Place vs. Pool B 1st Place
8 p.m. Pool A 1st Place vs. Pool B 2nd Place

Saturday
1 p.m. 7th Place Match
3 p.m. 5th Place Match
6 p.m. 3rd Place Match
8 p.m. Championship Match

*All matches to be played at Crawford Court
*All times PST

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