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UF volleyball picked to host early matches

Florida will host first- and second-round NCAA volleyball championship matches for the 14th time in the past 16 seasons.

The Gators, the nation's No. 9 seed, will host matches Thursday and Friday at the Stephen C. O'Connell Center, the NCAA Committee announced Sunday. Thursday, Arizona State (15-14) faces the College of Charleston (27-7) before Florida (28-2) takes on Florida A&M (21-6). The winners meet Friday for the right to advance to the Gainesville Region, Dec. 8-9 at the O'Connell Center.

"We're thrilled," Florida coach Mary Wise said. "When we found out, it was as exciting a reaction as all the years that I've been here because we were convinced we would be traveling for the first and second rounds."

Florida was one of a record seven Southeastern Conference teams that made the NCAA field.

EX-PLAYER BEATEN: A former hockey captain at Norwich University was hit on the head with a brick and beaten outside a Toronto bar, and police said he was on life support. Mike Serba, 22, "took a vicious beating," sustained brain trauma and was in critical condition, Toronto Police Detective Joseph Merritt said.

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