Wisconsin Selected as Preseason Volleyball Favorite
Three unanimous selections highlight Preseason All-Big Ten Team
ROSEMONT, Ill.– Wisconsin was chosen as the conference favorite for the 2019 volleyball season, voted on by the Big Ten coaches and announced on Monday. The Badgers begin their 2019 campaign ranked No. 5 by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA). It is the fifth straight season the Badgers will open the year ranked among the top 10 teams in the country.
Nebraska, ranked second nationally, was also selected No. 2 in the preseason poll. Defending 2018 Big Ten Champion Minnesota was tabbed third. Penn State was voted to finish fourth, while Illinois rounded out the top five of the preseason poll.
Additionally, conference coaches selected a Preseason All-Big Ten Team featuring three unanimous selections and four previous preseason honorees. Illinois’Jacqueline Quade, Penn State’sKendall Whiteand Wisconsin’sDana Rettkewere unanimous selections. Minnesota’sAlexis Hartreceives Preseason All-Big Ten honors for the third straight season, while GopherStephanie Samedy, White and Rettke claim the recognition for the second time.
Of the 14 members on the Preseason All-Big Ten Team, 12 were AVCA All-Americans in 2018 with Quade, Samedy, Nebraska’sLauren Stivrins, White and Rettke earning first-team honors. Wisconsin’sSydney Hilleyclaimed second-team accolades, while Penn State’sJonni Parkerand Purdue’sBlake Mohler, received third-team recognition. In addition, Minnesota’s Hart andTaylor Morgan,Nebraska’sNicklin Hamesand Penn State’sKaitlyn Hordwere honorable mention AVCA All-America.
The preseason honorees include two of the conference’s individual award winners from last season, Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, Penn State’s Kendall White and Big Ten Freshman of the Year, Nittany Lions’ Jonni Parker. Nine members of last year’s First Team All-Big Ten honorees, three Second Team All-Big Ten recipients and three All-Freshman team receivers are represented on the 2019 Preseason All-Big Ten Team.
In addition, Quade, Pritchard, Mohler, Hilley and Rettke were named to the 2018 Academic All-Big Ten team.
The preseason poll and All-Big Ten Team can be found below.
2019 PRESEASON ALL-BIG TEN VOLLEYBALL TEAM
JACQUELINE QUADE, SR., OH, ILLINOIS
Erika Pritchard, Jr., OH, Maryland
Alexis Hart, Sr., OH, Minnesota
Taylor Morgan, Sr., MB, Minnesota
Stephanie Samedy, Jr., OPP, Minnesota
Nicklin Hames, So., S, Nebraska
Lauren Stivrins, Jr., MB, Nebraska
Lexi Sun, Jr., OH, Nebraska
Kaitlyn Hord, So., MB, Penn State
Jonni Parker, So., RS, Penn State
KENDALL WHITE, Sr., DS, PENN STATE
Blake Mohler, Sr., MB, Purdue
Sydney Hilley, Jr., S, Wisconsin
DANA RETTKE, Jr., MB, WISCONSIN
UNANIMOUS SELECTIONS IN CAPS
2019 BIG TEN PRESEASON POLL
4. Penn State
8. Ohio State
9. Michigan State