NEAC Accepts Four Associate Members for Men’s Volleyball

NEAC Accepts Four Associate Members for Men’s Volleyball

GANSEVOORT, N.Y. – The North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) is excited to announce the acceptance of four associate members for competition in men’s volleyball, beginning with the 2014-15 season. 

Hilbert College and Medaille College, which are both currently associate members in other conference sports, will join Penn State Altoona and former NEAC member institution D’Youville College as members for men’s volleyball, bringing the sport’s sponsorship to nine teams across the conference.  They will join current full conference members Cazenovia College, Keuka College, Lancaster Bible College, SUNY Institute of Technology and Wells College to round out the field.  A 10th team will potentially be added in 2015-16 as well, with NEAC member school Wilson College anticipating adding the sport that season, as previously discussed here.

“We are very excited to bring the men’s volleyball programs of these four institutions to the NEAC,” stated NEAC Commissioner Candice Murray.  “The additions will help increase competition across the league while also putting the conference one step closer to gaining an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Men’s Volleyball Tournament.”

The NCAA requires conferences to have a minimum of seven teams compete in a sport for two years prior to granting them an automatic qualifying bid to the national tournament, meaning the NEAC would now qualify by the 2016-17 season thanks to the addition of these four teams for next season.   

Men’s Volleyball became the conference’s 17th sport offering last season after returning from a five-year hiatus.  The sport was originally sponsored by the NEAC in the conference’s first three seasons of existence in 2004-05, 2005-06 and 2006-07 before having to be discontinued due to membership turnover following the 2006-07 season.

Keuka College captured last season’s conference championship, topping SUNYIT 3-1 in the semifinals before defeating host and top seed Lancaster Bible College 3-1 in the finals.

The 2013-14 NEAC men’s volleyball season is set to begin in early January. 

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The North Eastern Athletic Conference has twelve NCAA Division III member institutions which include: Cazenovia College, College of St. Elizabeth, Gallaudet University, Keuka College, Lancaster Bible College, Pennsylvania State University - Abington, Pennsylvania State University - Berks, SUNY Cobleskill, SUNY Institute of Technology, SUNY Morrisville State College, Wells College, and Wilson College.  Bryn Athyn College and Pennsylvania College of the Technology will both join the conference as full members in 2014-15.  Associate members are: Cedar Crest College (W Swimming), Hilbert College (M Lacrosse), Medaille College (M&W Lacrosse) and Rutgers University - Camden (M Golf & M Tennis).  The North Eastern Athletic Conference has partnered with the North Atlantic Conference in the sports of men’s and women’s tennis.