Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University women's volleyball team will begin preparations for defense of its Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) North Division Championship as student-athletes officially report to fall camp on Friday (Aug. 10).
The Bulldogs will hold team and compliance meetings along with residence hall check-in and physicals as part of Friday morning's activities prior to the 40th anniversary of Bulldog Volleyball banquet in the evening. FSU received approval from the NCAA to report to camp one day earlier than allowed due to the special celebration.
On Saturday, an alumni match begins the day with the squad departing for its annual team retreat later in the day. The team returns for testing on Monday morning prior to the first official practice in the afternoon.
Regular weekday practices during the preseason will typically feature two per day until Friday, Aug. 24. Along with the normal preseason practices, the Bulldogs will also participate in a pair of scrimmages before camp comes to a close.
Ferris State officially opens its 2012 season on Friday, Aug. 31, with a pair of non-conference matches at the Ferris State Invitational in Big Rapids. The Bulldogs host Alderson-Broaddus (W.Va.) and Mercyhurst in their first two matches of the tournament. FSU then concludes tourney play on Saturday, Sept. 1, with contests against West Virginia State and Clarion (Pa.).
FSU compiled a 27-4 overall record in 2011 and won the GLIAC North Division Championship while also reaching the NCAA Division II Midwest Regional Semifinals. The Bulldogs finished as league co-champions after posting an 18-1 conference mark under head coach Tia Brandel-Wilhelm.
Ferris State returns 11 letterwinners for the 2012 season, including a pair of All-GLIAC and all-region honorable mention selections in senior setter Samantha Fordyce (DeWitt) and senior middle hitter Anne Sutton (Grand Rapids/Northview).