US volleyball claims women's sport world-record crowd

Staff WritersReuters
Nebraska University say more than 92,000 fans crammed in to watch their women's volleyball team. (AP PHOTO)
Camera IconNebraska University say more than 92,000 fans crammed in to watch their women's volleyball team. (AP PHOTO) Credit: AP

The University of Nebraska has claimed a world attendance record for a women's sporting event, with 92,003 fans flocking to Memorial Stadium in Lincoln to watch their volleyball team play Omaha.

The previous highest crowd, 91,648, watched Barcelona host Wolfsburg at Camp Nou in April last year in a Women's Champions League soccer match.

The outdoor Memorial Stadium, which usually hosts the university's American football games, has a listed capacity of 85,458, but attendances have exceeded 90,000 in the past.

Nebraska calculated the crowd by adding tickets sold to a head count of all team and other personnel at the event - including the marching band and the media.

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Perfect weather conditions played their part, with the match scheduled to switch to the 7907-capacity indoor Bob Devaney Sports Center in the event of rain.

"I've probably cried five times today. It's been a very emotional day," coach John Cook, who has led Nebraska to four National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) championships, told a news conference.

"We took a chance by playing in Memorial Stadium and to go for the record and break it.

"I don't think anybody could have envisioned that when this whole thing started. It feels like a great accomplishment."

The university said on its website the team have sold out 306 consecutive regular-season matches, although Wednesday's event will not count towards that streak since it was not held at their home arena.

Nebraska have led the US in attendance every season since 2013, and been involved in eight of the top nine crowds in NCAA volleyball history.

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