March 23, 2012 - by
Seminole Sand Battle

March 23, 2012

**Saturday’s play will now begin at 8 a.m. **
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida State sand volleyball team hosts its first-ever tournament on Saturday and Sunday at the Seminole Sand Volleyball Complex.

The Seminoles will welcome Southern California, Florida Gulf Coast and Stetson for the two-day event that features flighted team dual matches on Saturday beginning at 11 a.m. and two pairs tournaments on Sunday starting at 9 a.m.

Exhibition matches are scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday, as well.

“It’s going to be a great event,” head coach Danalee Corso said. “We’re excited to share our venue with these great teams. Weather might be an issue Saturday, but that’s the sport. That’s what makes our sport interesting. You never know what you will get.

“I think it’s going to be survival of the fittest. You have to learn how to play in good weather, bad weather, hot weather… the elements. Our team is prepared for that.”

USC will face Stetson at 11 a.m. on Saturday, followed by Florida State versus Florida Gulf Coast at approximately noon. All four teams are scheduled to face each other throughout the day.

The top 10 seeded pairs following Saturday’s dual play will compete in a double-elimination “Gold Division” bracket on Sunday. The bottom 10 teams will play in a single elimination “Silver Division” bracket.

Last weekend the Seminoles finished second in the team division of Southern California’s tournament, falling only to Pepperdine, but placing ahead of the Trojans and Long Beach State. FSU’s No. 2 tandem of junior Aurora Newgard and sophomore Brittany Tiegs won the pairs team title. The duo stayed tough in terrible weather conditions that included high winds, unseasonably cold temperatures and rain delays.

Newgard and Tiegs will play as FSU’s No. 1 this weekend, while senior Jekaterina Stepanova and freshman Jace Pardon will play at the No. 2 spot. Stepanova and Pardon are no strangers to winning pairs tournaments, either. The duo won the Clash of the Collegians title in Winter Haven, Fla., two weekends ago.

The event this weekend could be delayed by weather. Follow, and check the Seminoles’ weather hotline – 645-GAME for updates.

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