MO State HS Sports

Volleyball Set to Face Delaware in First Round of 2023 NCAA Tournament Friday

Dilara Gedikoglu_Dawn Sullivan_2023MIZZOUVB_BANNER_20231118_VB_vsFlorida-2-5

#8 Seed Mizzou (17-12) vs. Delaware (24-4)

Match #1 Information

Friday, Dec. 1 • 4:30 p.m., CT • Lincoln, Neb. • Bob Devaney Sports Center

Match #1 Coverage

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Match Notes

Missouri | Delaware | Nebraska | Long Island | 2023 NCAA Bracket


COLUMBIA, Mo. – The University of Missouri Volleyball team (17-12) is NCAA Tournament bound for the first time since 2020.

The eighth-seeded Tigers head to Lincoln, Nebraska, to face Delaware (24-4) in the First Round of the 2023 NCAA Tournament Friday. First serve is set for 4:30 p.m., CT, at the Bob Devaney Sports Center. The match will be broadcasted on ESPN+.

Friday marks Missouri’s 18th appearance at the NCAA Tournament in program history. Mizzou is currently ranked 34th in RPI (Rating Percentage Index), heading into the Tournament. 

With a victory over Delaware on Friday, Mizzou would face the winner of No. 1 overall seed Nebraska (28-1) and Long Island University (13-18) in the Second Round on Saturday at 7 p.m., CT.


  • Mizzou will make its 18th NCAA Tournament appearance this weekend in Lincoln, Nebraska.  
  • Missouri is 17-17 overall in the NCAA Tournament in program history. 
  • Friday marks Mizzou’s fourth-straight NCAA Tournament appearance competing in the state of Nebraska.
  • The Tigers have advanced to the NCAA Tournament Second Round in each of the last three appearances in the Cornhuskers State.
  • Mizzou swept South Dakota to open the 2020 NCAA Tournament on April 14 before falling to Ohio State (April 15, 3-0 loss) in Omaha, Nebraska.
  • Mizzou also picked up First Round wins in 2018 (Arizona, 3-0 win, Nov. 30) and 2019 (Northern Iowa, 3-0 win, Dec. 6) before falling to host Nebraska in the Second Round both seasons.
  • Missouri last faced No. 5 seeded Nebraska in the 2019 NCAA Tournament in 2019, dropping a four-set decision on Dec. 7. 
  • Mizzou also faced No. 6 seeded Nebraska in the 2018 NCAA Tournament Second Round (Dec. 1). 


  • Three Tiger student-athletes have NCAA Tournament experience. 
  • Libero Maya Sands grabbed nine digs with four assists and a kill in UNLV’s 2022 NCAA First Round matchup against seventh seeded Washington State Dec. 1, 2022, (3-0 loss) in San Diego, California. 
  • Setter Sarah White was a member of two NCAA Tournament teams while a member of Ohio State. The Buckeyes made an Elite Eight appearance in 2022 following a Sweet 16 berth in 2021.
  • Defensive specialist Lauren Forbes is the only Tiger on the current roster who went to Mizzou’s last NCAA Tournament appearance in 2020 (April 2021). Forbes, an early enrollee in spring 2021, was a member of that Mizzou team that advanced to the NCAA Second Round after a 3-0 sweep of South Dakota in Omaha, Nebraska.
  • Graduate student (fifth year) Dilara Gedikoglu will conclude her collegiate career this season, appearing in her first career NCAA Tournament.
  • Head coach Dawn Sullivan is 1-2 in her career at the NCAA Tournament as a head coach. She led Sands and current technical coordinator Jhenna Gabriel in the First Round of the 2022 NCAA Tournament (3-0 loss to No. 7 seed Washington State in San Diego, California) at the helm of UNLV. 
  • Sullivan went 1-1 at the 2020 NCAA Tournament with UNLV. She picked up her first career NCAA Tournament win over Illinois State, 3-1, on April 14, 2021. The Rebels then dropped to No. 2 seeded Kentucky, 3-0, in the Second Round in Omaha, Nebraska. 


  • Mizzou leads the all-time series with Delaware, 1-0. 
  • The Tigers swept Delaware on the road in Newark, Delaware, on Sept. 17, 2016. 


  • Nebraska leads the all-time series against Mizzou, 73-3.
  • Missouri has faced Nebraska twice in the NCAA Tournament with the Cornhuskers leading 2-0.
  • In their previous matchup, Missouri fell to the No. 5 seeded Cornhuskers, 3-1, on the road in Lincoln, Nebraska, on Dec. 7, 2019, in the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament.
  • Mizzou also faced No. 6 seeded Nebraska in the 2018 NCAA Tournament Second Round (Dec. 1, 3-0 loss). 
  • The Tigers last secured a win in Cornhuskers’ territory in 2003, as Missouri clinched a five-set win in Lincoln, Nebraska, on Oct. 15.  


  • Mizzou would face Long Island for the first time in program history if both teams pick up Friday First Round victories.


  • Missouri junior Lauren Forbes was named to the 2023 SEC Community Service Team, the league announced Wednesday.
  • An early enrollee in spring 2021, she will graduate this December from Mizzou with a bachelor’s in health science. Following graduation, she plans to go to Anesthesiologist Assistant School.
  • The defensive specialist/libero has appeared in 80 career matches (265 sets) over three seasons with Mizzou. She has registered 431 career digs and 36 aces. In 2023, Forbes has posted a career-best matching 15 aces with 120 digs. She compiled a career-high 18 digs against Bellarmine on Sept. 8.


  • Mizzou head coach Dawn Sullivan was named 2023 SEC Coach of the Year on Sunday.
  • Sullivan has guided the Tigers to a 17-12 mark including a .500 (9-9) record in SEC play in her first season at the helm of the program. She and her staff have engineered an eight-win overall improvement from 2022 (nine wins), which is tied for 12th nationally and ranks second among Power Five institutions.
  • Selected to finish 12th in the SEC preseason poll, Mizzou surpassed both the 2022 (two wins) and 2021 (two wins) conference win totals for seventh in the conference.
  • Under Sullivan’s leadership, the Tigers went on both three-match and four-match SEC win streaks this season, while securing series sweeps over Texas A&M and Auburn. Mizzou also added wins against South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi State, Georgia and Ole Miss to its 2023 resume. 
  • Mizzou has also picked up five wins over top-50 AVCA (based on KPI, Pablo, and RPI rankings) teams and nine wins over top-100 AVCA teams including two ranked wins over Auburn (#23 and #24, Oct. 20 & Nov. 12). 
  • Under Sullivan, Mizzou is set to make its 18th NCAA Tournament appearance, earning its first berth since 2020. 
  • Sullivan is the just the third coach in program history to earn the award, after Wayne Kreklow earned the distinction in 2013 and 2016.  
  • The coach of the year honor is the third in Sullivan’s career and her second straight after being tabbed Mountain West Coach of the Year in 2020 and 2022.  


  • Missouri libero Maya Sands was honored as the SEC Libero of the Year for her impressive play in 2023. The sophomore standout also earned a spot on the 2023 All-SEC team. 
  • The SEC’s top libero paced the conference with 4.99 digs per set (339 digs in SEC play). 
  • Overall, in 2023 Sands has registered a career-best 524 digs (4.81 digs/set, 35th in the nation), which also tops the SEC. In Missouri program history, Sands comes in at fifth overall for total digs in a single season. 
  • Most recently, the UNLV transfer logged 13 digs to complement two assists in the Tigers’ regular-season finale against Georgia (Nov. 26). 
  • The Rock Falls, Illinois, native, has registered double-digit digs in every match this season for Mizzou, including six performances of 24-plus digs (four 24-dig matches in 2023).
  • The two-time SEC Defensive Player of the Week (Oct. 16 and Nov. 13) has registered 20 or more digs in 14 matches this season, including 10 of the last 18 matches (five of the last nine). 
  • She has registered three-straight 20-plus dig outings twice, at Texas A&M (Oct. 1, 21), against #22 Kentucky (Oct. 6, 22) and at #13 Arkansas (Oct. 8, 24), and then against #12 Tennessee (Oct. 25, 20), at Ole Miss (Oct. 29, 24) and against Mississippi State (Nov. 3, 20).
  • Sands grabbed a career-high 30 digs to go with two assists and an ace against Ole Miss on Oct. 15. She also posted consecutive 23-dig performances against Texas A&M (Nov. 10) and Auburn (Nov. 12).
  • Sands ranks second on the Tigers behind the service line with 32 aces (0.30 aces/set, seventh in the SEC) in 2023. She has tallied a season-best three aces in four separate matches this season. Sands also has 100 assists in 2023. 
  •  In her career, Sands has compiled 936 digs and is on the heels of 1,000. 
  • Sands is the first Tiger in program history to be voted SEC Libero of the Year which was first awarded in 2009.


  • Jordan Iliff was named to the 2023 All-SEC Team, after clocking double-digit kills in 15 of the 18 SEC matches this season including 12-straight 10-plus kill matches from Oct. 1 to Nov. 12.
  • Most recently, Iliff posted 10 kills against Georgia (Nov. 26), while adding two aces and three digs. She has logged 10-plus kills in 15 of the last 17 matches (14 of the last 15 matches) for Mizzou. 
  • Iliff has recorded 10 matches with at least 15 kills during the 2023 campaign, clocking 10 or more kills in 23 matches this season.
  • The two-time SEC Offensive Player of the Week (Oct. 23 and Nov. 6) ranked eighth in the SEC for points (4.31 points/set, 293.0 points) and 10th for kills (3.54 kills/set, 241 kills) during conference play. She also paced the league with 31 aces (0.46) during the SEC slate.
  • Iliff totaled a personal-best 22 kills (.500 hitting percentage) to complement seven digs, five blocks, two aces and an assist in Mizzou’s five-set win over Georgia on Nov. 5.
  • She also notched 21 kills (.455, one error on 44 total attacks) and a career-best 15 digs against South Carolina on Sept. 24.
  • Overall, Iliff ranks eighth in the SEC for points (4.14 points/set, 447.5, seventh in the SEC). She is also averaging 3.44 kills per set (10th in the SEC, career-best 372 kills, seventh in the SEC). She is fourth in the SEC for aces (42), averaging 0.39 aces per set.
  • The six-rotation hitter has provided a steady presence for Mizzou in the back row, recording 22 matches with five-plus digs. Iliff has registered six double-doubles in 2023, finishing with double-digits digs seven times. 
  • She posted eight or more digs in nine-consecutive matches for Mizzou from Sept. 24 to Oct. 25, including a career-high 15 against South Carolina (Sept. 24) to spur the run. 
  • Iliff started the season with a bang, logging double-digit kills in five consecutive matches, from Aug. 25 through Sept. 2. Iliff commenced the season with 19 kills in the 2023 opener against Illinois State on Aug. 25.


  • Sierra Dudley was selected to the 2023 SEC All-Freshman Team. Dudley was the top true freshman setter in the conference in 2023, dishing out a total of 730 sets in SEC play this season (10.90 assists/set, fifth in SEC). 
  • In their season finale against Georgia (Nov. 26), Dudley logged 29 assists, five digs and two kills.
  • She has registered 19 or more assists in every SEC contest in 2023, including 30 or more assists in 14-straight matches from Sept. 24 to Nov. 12. 
  • Dudley finished with 40 or more assists 16 times in 2023, including six of the last eight matches. She has posted 20 or more assists in 17 straight matches this season.
  • Overall, she ranks fifth in the SEC with 1,100 total assists this season (10.28 assists/set, fourth in the SEC, 44th in the NCAA). 
  • Dudley is the first Tigers setter to have 1,000 assists in a season since Andrea Fuentes in 2019 (1,306 assists).
  • Dudley, a two-time SEC Freshman of the Week selection (Oct. 16 and Nov. 6), registered a career-best 60 assists and 12 digs in the Tigers’ victory over Ole Miss on Oct. 15. 
  • Her stat column against the Rebels not only marked the third-highest total assists for an SEC setter this season in conference play, but also was the most assists by a Tiger setter since Andrea Fuentes registered 62 assists against Alabama on Nov. 8, 2019.
  • Dudley also passed out 43 assists to go with two kills and two digs as the Tigers hit a season-best team hitting percentage of .458 in a 3-0 sweep of Mississippi State on Nov. 3.
  • She then registered 50 assists, adding eight digs, three kills, two blocks, and an ace as Mizzou hit .260 as a team in the Tigers’ five-set victory over Georgia on Nov. 5.
  • Dudley posted consecutive 50-assist matches against Georgia (Nov. 5) and Texas A&M (Nov. 10) before compiling 55 against #24 Auburn (Nov. 12).
  • Behind the 10-foot line, Dudley has logged 22 matches with five or more digs, including securing double-digit digs eight times this season. She leads Mizzou with eight double-doubles in 2023 and has registered 217 digs, 51 kills, 38 blocks and 21 aces.
  • Dudley is the first Missouri student-athlete to earn All-Freshman honors since Fuentes in 2018.
  • Her time as a Tiger got off to an impressive start, as Dudley registered 52 assists in Missouri’s third match of the season against Colgate on Aug. 27. She combined for 146 assists over the season-opening Mizzou Classic (Aug. 25-27).   


  • Dilara Gedikoglu has registered double-digit kills in five of the past seven matches. The outside hitter has also finished in double-digits attacking 16 times this season, including 14 kills four times.  
  • She chipped in nine kills (.263) with a trio of digs in the regular-season finale at Georgia on Nov. 25. 
  • Gedikoglu has notched 17 kills twice in 2023, posting the feat in both matchups with Kentucky (Oct. 6, .405). 
  • Gedikoglu posted consecutive 11-kill matches (Mississippi State & Georgia) followed by consecutive 10-kill matches (Texas A&M & #24 Auburn).
  • Defensively, she has tallied five or more digs in five of the last six matches. Gedikoglu paces the Tigers with eight double-doubles.
  • She has been crucial in Mizzou’s serve-receive, as she has been targeted 929 times in 2023, registering a reception percentage of .949. 
  • Gedikoglu compiled eight-plus digs in eight-straight matches, spanning from Sept. 24 through Oct. 20. 
  • The Alanya, Turkey, native, compiled a season-best 20 kills to go with 13 digs in her third match as a Tiger against Colgate on Aug. 27.  
  • Gedikoglu ranks second and third, respectively, on Mizzou with 249 digs (2.33 digs/set) and 291 kills (2.69 kills/set).
  • In her career, Gedikoglu enters the week with 975 kills and 944 digs.


  • Janet deMarrais compiled 17-consecutive double-digit kill matches from Sept. 15 to Nov. 17. She has posted nine or more kills in each of the last 19 contests.
  • The outside most recently tallied 10 kills with an assist and a dig in Mizzou’s regular-season finale at Georgia on Nov. 25. 
  • In 2023, deMarrais has clocked double-digit kills 19 times, including three matches with 20 or more kills.  
  • In the back row, deMarrais has tallied six-plus digs in 12 of the last 17 matches, including a career-best 13 digs against Ole Miss on Oct. 15 to complement a career-best 30 kills.
  • deMarrais registered a then career-best 24 kills on a .400 clip in the match prior at Alabama on Oct. 11.
  • The Colleyville, Texas, native, clocked 15 or more kills in five-straight contests (Oct. 1 through Oct. 15), including 18 in her home state at Texas A&M on Oct. 1. 
  • The sophomore ranked fifth in the SEC in league play with 4.48 points per set (304.5 points) and seventh with 3.91 kills per set (266 kills).
  • Overall, deMarrais ranks 15th in the league for kills per set (3.18, 331 kills).
  • She has registered 20 total aces during the 2023 campaign, including a career-best three, four times.
  • deMarrais has appeared in the Mizzou starting lineup in each of the last 18 matches, dating back to the Tigers’ SEC opener at Tennessee on Sept. 20. She previously had started in Mizzou’s first two matches of the season Aug. 25-26 (Illinois State and Central Arkansas) at the Mizzou Classic.


  • Morgan Isenberg ranks third in the SEC with 133 blocks (37th in the NCAA, 1.25 blocks/set, sixth in the SEC, 41st in the NCAA). In league action, she ranked sixth with 1.24 blocks per set (82 total blocks, fourth in the SEC). 
  • The Wildwood, Missouri, native, has logged five or more blocks 13 times in 2023. 
  • The middle blocker contributed to the Tigers’ season-best 15 total blocks against Texas A&M on Nov. 10, turning away eight at the net to complement six kills (.455).
  • She posted a personal-best 10 blocks against Georgia on Nov. 5 while adding seven kills on a .500 clip. 
  • The junior’s 10-block performance marked the first time a Tiger had posted double-digit blocks since Trista Strasser recorded the feat against Northern Kentucky on Aug. 26, 2022.
  • Isenberg has registered three-plus blocks 23 times this season, including 14 of the Tigers’ last 17 contests.
  • In the Mizzou record books, Isenberg ranks second for a single season with 126 block assists and fourth with 1.25 blocks per set.
  • Offensively, Isenberg hit .292 in conference matches.
  • She has registered 18 matches with five or more kills this season. 
  • Isenberg recorded her fourth double-digit kill match of the 2023 campaign against #24 Auburn on Nov. 12, clocking 10 kills on a .563 hitting clip to go with two blocks. 
  • Isenberg also registered eight kills on a .727 hitting clip at #23 Auburn on Oct. 20, while adding three blocks and career-best matching two digs. The hitting percentage was Mizzou’s highest since Kenna Sauer posted a mark of .700 at Ole Miss on Nov. 21, 2020.
  • She notched a career-best 16 kills on a .444 hitting clip to help the Tigers secure a five-set win over Xavier on Sept. 9.


  • Missouri Volleyball Head Coach Dawn Sullivan and her staff announced Nov. 15, the signing of five student-athletes for National Signing Day.
  • Tia Phinezy, Vivian Parker, Aspen Maxwell, Claire Morrissey, and Grace Sweeney will all join Mizzou this upcoming fall ahead of the 2024 campaign. 
  • The group marks Sullivan’s first NSD signing class at the helm of the Tigers program.


  • Head coach Dawn Sullivan enters her first season at the helm of the program in 2023.
  • Sullivan amassed a 109-38 (.741) mark over five seasons at UNLV, leading the Rebels to five-straight postseason appearances and a pair of Mountain West Championships.
  • Sullivan has added seven transfers and four freshmen since her arrival in Mid-Missouri this past December.
  • The Tigers returned juniors Jordan IliffLauren ForbesMorgan Isenberg, and sophomores Madilyn Sell and Janet deMarrais from the 2022 team.
  • Iliff, a right side hitter from St. Louis, was named to the 2023 USA Volleyball Women’s Collegiate National Team in June. The junior was third on Mizzou offensively in 2022 with 227 kills (2.39 kills per set).


  • The 2023 team features a multitude of new staff members in addition to head coach Dawn Sullivan.
  • Cullen Irons, who coached with Sullivan at UNLV, was added as an assistant coach in January.
  • Wendel Camargo and Arielle Wilson will serve as Sullivan’s Recruiting Coordinators. Wilson, a four-time NCAA Champion, and four-time Big Ten Champion at Penn State, is also the Defensive Coordinator.
  • Technical Coordinator Jhenna Gabriel competed for Sullivan at UNLV in 2022, helping the Rebels secure the Mountain West Regular-Season Championship and a berth in the NCAA Tournament. Gabriel also earned All-American honors at Texas before her graduate transfer season at UNLV.


This article is provided by University of Missouri Athletics