Belton (August 15, 2013) -- The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor volleyball team has been picked to finish third in the American Southwest Conference in the league's annual Preseason Coaches Poll. UMHB is coming off the most successful season since the program moved to NCAA Division III and the Cru is picked to return to the ASC Championship Tournament for the third consecutive year.
The Cru totaled 151 points in balloting of coaches and sports information directors. Defending conference champion Hardin-Simmons is picked to win its fourth consecutive conference title with 198 points and 18 first-place votes. Three-time ASC champion U.T.-Dallas came in second with 179 points and two first-place votes. East Texas Baptist was picked fourth with 149 points, U.T.-Tyler's 111 points ranked them at fifth with Concordia Texas taking sixth with 84 points.
Hardin-Simmons senior outside hitter Christine Sas was voted Preseason Offensive Player of the year while East Texas Baptist sophomore middle blocker Kolby Sharp was voted Preseason Defensive Player of the Year. The ASC will move to a single division format this season instead of East and West divisions.
The Cru finished 22-8 overall and 12-4 in ASC East Division play last year. The Cru volleyball team returns five letterwinners from last year's team, including three all-conference honorees. Rob Frost is back for his third season at the helm. The UMHB volleyball team will open the 2013 season with four matches over two days at the Mayborn Campus Center August 30th and August 31st.
2013 ASC PRESEASON VOLLEYBALL POLL
[Voted on by ASC Head Coaches and Sports Information Directors]
Team (first-place votes) Points 2012 Record
1 Hardin-Simmons (18) 198 29-4, 16-0 ASC (1st West)
2 Texas-Dallas (2) 179 27-7, 14-2 ASC (1st East)
3 Mary Hardin-Baylor 151 22-8, 12-4 ASC (T2nd East)
4 East Texas Baptist 149 19-12, 12-4 ASC (T2nd East)
5 Texas-Tyler 111 13-17, 5-11 ASC (T4th East)
6 Concordia Texas 84 10-18, 5-11 ASC (T4th West)
7 Mississippi College 81 12-18, 5-11 ASC (T4th East)
8 Howard Payne 74 10-16, 5-11 ASC (T4th East)
9 LeTourneau 49 7-25, 1-15 ASC (6th East)
10 Sul Ross State 24 3-19, 1-15 ASC (6th West)
* A single division format will be used this season instead of East and West; Former league members' records last season: Schreiner (12-15, 8-8 ASC West), Texas Lutheran (15-13, 12-4 ASC West).