Volleyball Opens C-USA Tournament Against Rice

UABSPORTS.COM Senior Rachel Fairbanks was named Conference USA Libero of the Year.
Senior Rachel Fairbanks was named Conference USA Libero of the Year.

Nov. 20, 2013

UAB (20-13, 7-7) vs. Rice (11-18, 7-7)
Thursday, Nov. 21 at 7 p.m. CT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The seventh-seeded UAB volleyball team will begin play in the 2013 Conference USA Tournament on Thursday, Nov. 21 in Murfreesboro, Tenn. The Blazers are matched up with 10th seed Rice.

UAB (20-13, 7-7 C-USA) and Rice (11-18, 7-7 C-USA) are slated as the nightcap, beginning at 7 p.m. CT on the first day of play. The two teams have met once before in the tournament back in 2008. The Blazers came away with a 3-1 win over the Owls. The teams recently squared-off, with Rice taking a 3-0 win last Friday.

Eight teams will play on the first day of the tournament, while the top four seeds each receive a first-round bye and will await the winners from the first round. UTSA was pegged as the top seed overall after finishing 21-7 overall and 13-1 in C-USA. 

UAB’s half of the bracket includes second-seeded Tulane (26-3, 12-2), who they would face on Friday, Nov. 22 at 7 p.m. CT if they advance past Rice. Also in the Blazers’ half of the bracket are third seed Tulsa (23-6, 12-2 C-USA), sixth seed Middle Tennessee (17-12, 8-6 C-USA) and 11th seed FIU (12-16, 6-8 C-USA).

Conference USA Tournament History
The Blazers were Conference USA champions in 2006 and finished as the runner-up in 2007 and 2008. Last season, UAB made it to the semifinals of the conference tournament, but fell to eventual champion Tulsa, 3-0.

All-Conference USA Honors
Four members of the UAB volleyball team, Sam Skinner, Rachel Fairbanks, Becca Howard and Sara Rishell, have been selected to 2013 All-Conference USA Teams, the league announced on Tuesday.



The Blazers were one of just three teams in the conference to have four honorees selected to the all-conference teams. Tulane and Tulsa each had four members, as well.

Fairbanks C-USA Libero of the Year
Senior Rachel Fairbanks made UAB volleyball history after being named the 2013 Conference USA Libero of the Year, the league announced on Wednesday.

Fairbanks became the first player at UAB to earn the libero of the year honor. The Katy, Texas native has been a solid contributor on defense over the last two seasons for the Blazers.

In her senior year, Fairbanks has played in all 117 sets for UAB. She leads the team in digs (586) and is second in service aces (28). Among the conference, she ranks third in C-USA in digs per set with 5.01 and is 17th in service aces per set with 0.25.

For the latest news on Blazer sports, follow the UAB Athletics Twitter account: @UABathletics. For volleyball news, follow @UAB_VB.


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