FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The 24th season of Arkansas Volleyball begins Friday night at Barnhill Arena, hosting the Arkansas Classic with a field that also includes CSU Bakersfield, ULM and Utah State. The season opener against CSUB is scheduled for 7 p.m. Individual match tickets are $5 at the ticket window starting one hour prior to first serve. UA students—with valid ID—and fans 17 years and younger receive free admission.
Against the Field
The Razorbacks carry a 7-1 combined record against the Arkansas Classic field but will be meeting Friday’s opponent, CSU Bakersfield, for the first time. Overall, Arkansas is 5-0 against ULM and 2-1 against Utah State.
Arkansas has won 15 of 23 season openers in program history including five of the last seven. The Razorbacks have won their last four season openers at Barnhill Arena with a 12-3 mark in those contests overall.
What’s New at Barnhill
Fans will notice a few changes at Barnhill Arena this season. Physically, general admission seats have been added behind the benches along with new reserved seats on the south sideline. Additionally, Arkansas has expanded its Clear Bag Policy to all home events. Within the flow of the match, the 10-minute intermission between sets two and three has been eliminated in the SEC.
Aye Aye, Captain
By way of a team vote, seniors Kori Ortiz and Pilar Victoria will serve as the Razorbacks’ team captains. Ortiz enters the season with 600 career digs while Victoria returns to the floor after a redshirt season in 2016.
Welcome Back, Pilar
For a second-consecutive year, redshirt senior Pilar Victoria was named to the All-SEC Preseason Team. She tallied 525 kills in 2015 but missed last season with an injury. In the SEC preseason coaches poll, Arkansas was picked to finish eighth in the league.
Arkansas heads into the 2017 season with nine freshmen on the roster, the most in program history. Previously, the high was six freshmen on five other occasions, most recently in 2014. The latest incoming class earned Highest Honorable Mention accolades from PrepVolleyball.com.
Across the Net
As part of their 2017 slate, the Razorbacks are scheduled to play 10 matches against eight teams that advanced to last year’s NCAA Tournament. Arkansas will also face eight teams that appear in the AVCA preseason poll. The team’s SEC schedule begins Sept. 20 against Tennessee.
Season tickets are still available with pricing options beginning at $40 and can be purchased through the Razorback Ticket Center by calling 800-982-HOGS (4647).
For more information about Arkansas Volleyball, follow @RazorbackVB on Twitter.