Wheeling University Volleyball Team Picked No. 13 In Preseason Poll
LEXINGTON, Ky. — The Wheeling University volleyball team checked in at No. 13 in the American Volleyball Coaches of America Division II Preaseason Poll released Tuesday afternoon by the organization.
Defending-National Champion Tampa received 43 of the 46 first place votes and was named the preseason-favorite, while Cal State-Bernardino and Western Washington rounded out the top-three.
The Cardinals, under 19th-year coach Christy Benner, are coming off of their seventh NCAA Tournament Atlantic Region title in the past eight seasons and will return a trio of AVCA All-Americans, including 2018 Atlantic Region Player of the Year and First-Team All-American Haley Kramer.
Benner will also welcome back Second Team All-American setter Stephanie Sylvester and Third Team All-American outside hitter Cassie Meyer. Sylvester led all Division II setters with 1,815 assists, while Meyer ranked third in the country with 606 kills.
On defense, the Cardinals will have AVCA First Team All-Region and D2CCA All-American libero Audrey Francis , who finished second in Division II last season with 874 total digs.
The Cardinals were the only team from the Atlantic Region to start the season ranked in the top 25. Gannon received the most points in the poll among the “others receiving votes” section.
Wheeling opens the regular-season on Friday, Sept. 6 when it travels to Pensacola, Florida for the West Florida Invitational.
The Cardinals will begin the event with a match against Florida Tech at 9 a.m., before taking on preseason No. 3 Western Washington around 2 p.m.