CofC VB Picked To Win 2013 Title
RICHMOND, Va. (August 14, 2013) – CAA volleyball’s newest member, the College of Charleston, has been selected as the preseason favorite to capture the 2013 CAA volleyball title according to a vote by the league’s head coaches.
The Cougars, who enter the league having won either the regular season or conference tournament championship each of the last 12 years while in the Southern Conference, were a unanimous choice (teams weren’t allowed to vote for themselves) for the CAA’s top spot. CofC received seven first-place votes and 49 total points. Northeastern University got 36 total points to earn the second-place nod, with Delaware obtaining 34 points to finish third. Defending CAA champion Hofstra picked up one first place vote and had 33 total points for the fourth spot. James Madison was fifth after receiving 28 points, while Towson -- last year’s regular season champ – followed with 19 points. William & Mary and UNCW rounded out the preseason poll, receiving 15 and 10 points, respectively.
CofC, which is coming of its seventh NCAA Tournament appearance in the last 11 years, returns three players who were selected to the All-SoCon team. Senior Darcy Dorton led the Cougars in 2012 with 529 kills and earned first-team All-Socon and honorable mention AVCA All-America honors. Sophomore Melissa Morello was named to the SoCon’s All-Freshman team last season, while junior Sloane White earned second-team All-SoCon honors and was also named the conference’s tournament MVP. Over the 12 seasons CofC has won either the SoCon regular season or conference tournament title, the school has compiled a 324-83 record. Last season, the Cougars advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament after defeating then-No. 23 Miami (Fla.) in the first round. It was the program’s first ever victory over a ranked foe and second NCAA postseason victory.
Northeastern returns 2012 CAA Player of the Year and AVCA All-East Region honoree Kelly Bacon. The senior led the Huskies last year with 346 kills, posted a .240 hitting percentage, and recorded 247 digs. Junior Natalia Skiba was named a third-team All-CAA performer after recording a team-high 530 digs and 5.52 digs per game last season. The Huskies posted a 20-7 record in 2012, which included a 9-3 mark in conference play. NU owns a current 19-game home court winning streak and hasn’t lost a home match since Sept. 30, 2011.
Delaware, which has captured four of the last six conference titles, brings back two CAA All-Rookie members from a year ago in Ariel Shonk and Mackenzie Olsen. Shonk, who was also named a third-team All-CAA member and Defensive Specialist of the Year, averaged 5.68 digs per game in 2012. Olsen registered 10 assists per game and 2.3 digs per contest last season for the Blue Hens.
Hofstra will be led by first-team All-CAA member Kelsie Wills. The junior topped the team with 581 kills for a 4.4 kills per game average in 2012, and also averaged 2.22 digs per game. Hofstra defeated second-seeded Delaware in the 2012 championship game, 3-2, to win its first CAA crown since 2006.
2013 CAA VOLLEYBALL PRESEASON COACHES POLL
- College of Charleston 49 points (7 first place votes)
- Northeastern 36 points
- Delaware 34 points
- Hofstra 33 points (1)
- James Madison 28 points
- Towson 19 points
- William & Mary 15 points
- UNCW 10 points
(Teams received 7 points for a first-place vote, 6 for second, etc. Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own team.)