MIAMI SHORES, Fla. -- So this is what it comes down to:
Win and keep playing.
Barry's volleyball team is in need of two wins, beginning with Tuesday's 7 p.m. match at Lynn to have a shot at the NCAA Tournament.
Following Friday's loss to No. 29 nationally-ranked Palm Beach Atlantic, whom the Buccaneers took to five sets earlier this season, Barry enters its final regular season week needing to prevail to move on.
"We have to beat Lynn," Bucs coach Steve Hendricks said. "Lynn is a must-win to keep going."
The top eight teams in each NCAA Division II region qualify for the national tournament, which begins at regional sites Nov. 29-Dec. 2. Barry (15-12 overall, 9-9 in South Region) was eighth in last week's South Region poll. Teams must finish .500 in region contests to qualify. With three matches this week to close the regular season, that means the Bucs must win at least two.
Barry, which is 7-6 and in fourth place in Sunshine State Conference play, hosts Eckerd (21-7, 12-2 SSC) at 7 p.m. Friday and No. 7 nationally-ranked Tampa (25-3, 14-0 SSC) at 4 p.m. Saturday on Senior Day.
"We end at home with two good opponents that we know we can compete against," Hendricks said. "Saturday is senior day, you never know ..."
Barry is tied for fourth in the SSC in blocks with an average of 1.99 per set. Tampa and Eckerd rank first and second, respectively. The Bucs are fifth in service aces with an average of 1.42 per set. Lynn is first at 1.69. Eckerd is sixth at 1.28, and Tampa seventh at 1.23.
"I feel good where we are," Hendricks said. "I think the seniors have really helped raise the level here. The new recruits have definitely made an impact. We're definitely headed in the right direction."
Seniors Tania Torres, Mariana Lisboa, Alicia Guerrero and Mima Hajdukovic are playing their final home matches at Barry. Torres is fifth in the SSC in total kills with 288. She is ninth in the league in total blocks with 71. As a setter, Hajdukovic ranks fourth in the league in assists with 926, sixth in service aces per set at 0.33 and 12th in hitting percentage at .285. Lisboa is fourth in aces per set at 0.34 and 19th in digs per set at 2.58. Guerrero, who is returning this week from an ankle injury and is expected to play, has a .240 attack percentage.
"Tania's been a great leader and player on the court," Hendricks said. "Alicia has added depth and competition to our outside position. Mima continues to set a great offense, and put our hitters in great position to put balls away. Mari's passion and court leadership has made us better, and is a great standard for our young kids to emulate."