Bricio, Fenerbahce Among CEV Women's Final Four

The quarterfinals of the CEV Champions League made it pretty clear which regions serve as hubs for the best women’s professional volleyball in Europe. 

Five months after the first match of the 2018-19 CEV Women’s Champions League, the field of 27 teams has narrowed to four: two teams from Istanbul and two teams located just 350 miles apart in Northern Italy. 

Watch the Men's CEV Championship LIVE on FloVolleyball

Fenerbahce Opet Istanbul and Igor Gorgonzola Novara came through the quarterfinals 2-0, but both teams were pushed to five sets in the second leg of the quarters.

Fenerbahce, which features former USC outside hitter Samantha Bricio, eliminated Savino Del Bene Scandicci, current home to Swedish teenage star outside hitter Isabelle Haak and American Annie Mitchem. 

Fenerbahce’s 19-year-old opposite Melissa Teresa Vargas Abreu led all players in the quarterfinal round with 56 points in two matches. 

Another young player led the way for Novara. Paola Egonu, 20, ranked second among all scorers with 51 total points in the quarters. Her team, which includes American Lauren Carlini and Michelle Bartsch-Hackley defeated Allianz MTV Stuttgart of Germany’s Bundesliga 3-1 and 3-2. 

The victories over Stuttgart earned Novara its first Champions League semifinal appearance.

In that inaugural semi, Novara will face VakifBank Istanbul. The reigning Champions League victor stumbled in the first leg of the quarters, losing in five sets to Dinamo Moscow, which is led by Russian superstar Nataliya Goncharova. The loss was the Turkish squad’s first Champions League loss since 2016, but it earned redemption (and then some) with a sweep of Moscow in the second leg, even holding the Russian team to just eight points in the third set. 

VakifBank’s Zhu Ting was named MVP of the match, contributing 17 points in the sweep. Only her teammate Lonneke Sloetjes had more, tallying 16 kills, two blocks and an ace for 19 total points. Between the two quarterfinal matches, Ting collected 41 points, good for fourth among all players. Sloetjes ranked third overall with 45 points.

Fenerbahce’s semifinal opponent will be Imoco Volley Conegliano. In an even worse start to the quarterfinals than VakifBank, Imoco got swept by Eczacibasi VitrA Istanbul in the first leg of the in Imoco’s home, Treviso, Italy. Eczacibasi’s Tijana Boskovic put away 25 points in the three-set match, while Imoco’s hitters racked up 14 errors.

In the rematch, American Kim Hill led the way for Imoco to stave off elimination, tallying 25 points in a four-set victory in Istanbul and 15-10 triumph in the golden set. Overall Hill ranked ninth among all scorers with 32 points in the quarters.

Champions League action starts back up with the first leg of the semifinals April 2-4 and the second leg April 9-11, determining once and for all which teams will play for gold on May 18 in Berlin.

Watch the CEV Champions League semifinals right here on FloVolleyball.

NCAA Tournament Watch Guide

The NCAA tournament is here. Check out the slate of games you can watch right here on FloVolleyball.

All The NCAA Tournament Info You Need

The NCAA Tournament is here! The selection committee released the bracket Sunday night and action starts Thursday at 4:30 pm ET. 

Big Ten Weekend Watch Guide

For most conferences the post season has already begun, for the Big Ten there are still a number of regular season games to settle first. 

FloVolleyball Weekly Notebook: Tickets Punched

It’s our last weekly update of the regular season. Here are the top headlines and storylines leading up to Sunday’s NCAA Selection Show.

American Men In CEV Champions League

Just like we did a few weeks ago with the women, we’re going to make it a whole lot easier for you to follow your favorite American professional volleyball players overseas by breaking down where you can see Team USA athletes in the 2019-20 CEV Champions League. 

Biggest Takeaways From The CAA Championship

Towson’s magical season hasn’t come to an end yet. The Tigers strolled through the 2019 Colonial Athletic Association Championship to claim the program’s second conference title and secure an automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament. They are the first team since 1996 to go undefeated in the regular season and win the postseason championship.

CAA Championship Wrap Up

Towson became the first team in over a decade to go undefeated for an entire season in CAA play and win the conference title in the same year since George Mason in 1996. The Tigers won 22 straight games, with 16 of them being conference wins, to finish the season at 28-2 overall and 16-0 in the CAA. They now receive an automatic bid to the 2019 NCAA Volleyball tournament.

Everything You Need To Know About The NCAA Postseason

The postseason is officially upon us. Thursday, four conferences begin their tournaments, with eight more kicking off Friday, and one league, the Southern Conference, started its tourney with a play-in match on Tuesday night. NCAA Tournament berths are on the line come the championship matches on Saturday and Sunday.

Top 7 Big Ten Matches Of 2019

Two more weeks of competition remain before the 2019 Big Ten women’s volleyball champion is crowned. There’s still plenty of time for big, game-changing results to roll in, but we wanted to take a moment to look back on some of the most exciting matches of the season to date in what is one of the, if not the, most competitive women’s volleyball conference out there. 

CAA Championship Preview: Towson Heavily Favored

The final regular-season results for the 2019 Colonial Athletic Association women’s volleyball rolled in on Sunday, and the nine teams in the league assumed their final positions in the standings.