SPARTANBURG, SC – The UNC Greensboro volleyball team has been selected fourth in the 2007 Southern Conference pre-season poll as decided upon by the league’s 11 head coaches. Junior middle blocker Kaitlyn Nortz was also named to the 12-player pre-season all-conference team.
College of Charleston is predicted to win the conference, earning eight first place votes for a total of 97 points to grab the top spot in the poll. Furman is in second in the balloting earning 93 points, including three first-place votes. Appalachian State followed in third place with 81 points while UNCG had 71 points for fourth place. Chattanooga and Davidson each earned 60 points and Elon garnered 48 points. Georgia Southern, Western Carolina, Wofford and The Citadel rounded out the rest of the poll.
Nortz, a native of Parma, OH, is one of two upperclassmen for third-year head coach Shawn Garus. Nortz helped the Spartans re-write the record books last season. In 2006, she led UNCG in blocks with 149 and was second on the team in points, averaging 4.43 per game, and kills with 443 on the season. She set a new five-game match record with five solo blocks against Gardner-Webb. She was also named to the North Carolina Sports Information Association all-state first team.
College of Charleston placed a league-high four student-athletes on the pre-season all-conference team, highlighted by the selections of 2006 Freshman of the Year Emily Sawin and 2006 all-conference setter Lindsay Kane. Middle blockers Tiffany Blum and Annie Uthe also joined the pair.
Furman placed three on the team including 2006 Player of the Year Nikki Palazzo. She is joined by outside hitter Chibuzo Aguocha and setter Courtney Stewardson.
Appalachian State placed 2006 all-conference selection Brittany Zahn and Dianna Thomas on the list while Davidson’s Katie Pierucci and Chattanooga’s Laura Newberry were also selected.
The Spartans open the 2006 season this weekend when they welcome Radford, UNC Wilmington, Davidson, Austin Peay and North Carolina A&T to Fleming Gymnasium for the UNCG/HPU Triad Challenge, a two-day tournament co-hosted by UNCG and High Point University.
UNCG opens action Friday, Aug. 24 when it takes on Radford at 2:30 pm. The Spartans round out the day’s action when they take on in-state rival UNC Wilmington at 7:30 pm.
2007 Women’s Volleyball Preseason Poll
1. College of Charleston (8) 97
2. Furman (3) 93
3. Appalachian State 80
4. UNC Greensboro 71
5. Davidson 60
6. Chattanooga 60
7. Elon 48
8. Georgia Southern 37
9. Western Carolina 25
10. Wofford 23
11. The Citadel 11
2007 Women’s Volleyball All-Conference Team
Brittany Zahn, Appalachian State
Dianna Thomas, Appalachian State
Annie Uthe, College of Charleston
Lindsey Kane, College of Charleston
Tiffany Blum, College of Charleston
Emily Sawin, College of Charleston
Katie Pierucci, Davidson
Nikki Palazzo, Furman
Chibuzo Aguocha, Furman
Courtney Stewardson, Furman
Kaitlyn Nortz, UNC Greensboro
Lara Newberry, Chattanooga
- UNCG -