Johnson City, Tenn. (August 30, 2002) - Southern Conference volleyball coaches have selected East Tennessee State University to finish in fourth place for the 2002 season. The Buccaneers tallied 67 points, placing the team behind Furman (75), Georgia Southern (89) and last year's regular-season champion College of Charleston, which earned eight first place votes and 98 points overall.
ETSU head coach Deane Webb led his group to a second place finish in the SoCon last season after being picked to finish seventh in the 2001 poll. Webb has said the team's goal is to move up one spot from last year's final standings and dethrone College of Charleston for the conference title. However, Webb stated that more importantly would be to win the Southern Conference Tournament and advance to the NCAA championships for the first time in school history.
Junior Kate Steidle (Waynesboro, Va.) was the lone Buc voted to the SoCon's pre-season all-league squad. In 2001, the outside hitter played a key role on an ETSU team that finished 20-6 overall. Steidle played in all 26 matches for the Buccaneers last season. She led the team with 0.5 service aces per game, ranking her seventh in the conference. Steidle also set a career-high mark for kills in a game with 28 versus Furman a year ago and is Coach Webb's leading returning player in that category.
East Tennessee State will see its first action tonight at the Spring Hill Suites Invitational hosted by UNC Charlotte. This weekend the Bucs will face some tough competition early on with matches against UNCC, Northwestern and Southern Methodist.
2002 SoCon Volleyball Poll
1. College of Charleston (8) 98
2. Georgia Southern (3) 89
3. Furman 75
4. East Tennessee State 67
5. Chattanooga 65
6. Davidson 57
7. Western Carolina 49
8. Wofford 39
9. Appalachian State 37
10. UNC Greensboro 17
11. The Citadel 12
2002 Volleyball Preseason All-League Team
1. Stephanie Ballard, College of Charleston
2. Mary Sabatino, College of Charleston
3. Sara Davis, College of Charleston
4. Tara Greene, College of Charleston
5. Alisa Long, College of Charleston
6. Kari Krouse, Chattanooga
7. Roberta Quis, Davidson
8. Kate Steidle, East Tennessee State
9. Laura Bush, Furman
10. Abby Simon, Furman
11. Lauren McClain, Georgia Southern
12. Martina Veiglova, Georgia Southern
13. Sara Komosinski, Western Carolina