Queens schedules crosstown rivals Belmont Abbey for inaugural home match

Nothing beats a rivalry match — especially when it is the team’s inaugural home match.

The new college men’s volleyball program Queens as part of recently unveiling its 2018 schedule announced that it will play its home-opener against Belmont Abbey on Jan. 12.

Queens, a NCAA Division II program located in Charlotte, North Carolina, is about 15 miles from Belmont Abbey. This is the closest distance between two NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball programs on the East Coast.

The Royals after announcing last year that they would start a men’s volleyball team for the 2018 season hired former Grand Canyon coach Jeremy Price as their inaugural head coach. Price in his first year at the school has received commitments from more than 10 recruits for the upcoming season, including multiple all-state high school players, a USA Volleyball High Performance participant and transfers from both Pfeiffer and Juniata.

Belmont Abbey also enters the upcoming with a new head coach. Former all-conference outside attacker Nolan Albrecht was named the team’s head coach one year after graduating from the college.

The Crusaders won their final five regular season matches last season to finish in fifth place in the ConfCarolinas and reached the conference tournament quarterfinals.

The home-opener will be the first of two matches between the Charlotte area teams during the upcoming season. Queens also will travel to Belmont Abbey for a non-conference match on March 22.

Queens will compete as an independent team without a conference affiliation for its inaugural season.

Along with its matches against Belmont Abbey, Queens scheduled 23 matches against NCAA Division I-II teams during the upcoming season.

Queens will play the program’s inaugural match on the road against North Greenville on Jan. 9. This will be the first of the Royals’ 13 non-conference matches versus ConfCarolinas teams in 2018.

Queens also scheduled three matches against EIVA teams with an early-season road match versus St. Francis and a home-and-home series with Charleston.