MACON, Ga. (Aug. 21, 2013) – For the second straight year, senior outside hitter Megan Devine (Kingsport, Tenn.) was named Atlantic Sun Preseason Player of the Year, as the league office released its preseason awards on Wednesday. Along with Devine, juniors Meredith Hardy (Kingsport, Tenn.) and Katie Muey (Alexandria, Ind.) also received preseason accolades. Hardy joined Devine on the preseason all-conference list, while Muey won the Libero of the Year fan vote on Facebook.
Devine, the unanimous Preseason Player of the Year selection, was named A-Sun Player of the Year and A-Sun Championship Most Valuable Player in 2012. In addition, the Kingsport, Tenn. native was also an Honorable Mention selection to the 2012 AVCA Division I South Region Team. Last season, Devine was the only player in the conference to achieve more than 500 kills (547 total), which led the conference, while she also tallied the most in conference matches (291). Meanwhile, the outside hitter set A-Sun records for most double-doubles in a season (25) and in a conference season (15), and for the most attack attempts in a season (1,586) and in conference play (839). Devine enters the 2013 campaign 337 kills shy from becoming the A-Sun all-time career leader. The Buccaneer currently ranks fifth with 1,410.
Hardy enjoyed an outstanding sophomore season and looks to carry it over into her junior year. The Buccaneer middle blocker set single-season A-Sun records for blocks in a season (201) and blocks in A-Sun only matches (113) en route to receiving First Team All-Atlantic Sun and All-Tournament Team honors. A year ago, Hardy ranked second among ETSU single-season leaders in blocks and block assists (176). The Kingsport, Tenn. native also averaged 1.45 blocks per set in 2012, which led the A-Sun and ranked nationally among the top 15 Division I players.
Muey edged out Florida Gulf Coast’s Whitney Masters in the fan vote for Libero of the Year by receiving 317 “Likes” on Facebook. In 2012, Muey ranked second on the team in digs (436) and service aces (37), while ranking seventh in the conference in service aces per set (0.27). The Alexandria, Ind. native led the Blue and Gold with 23 service aces in 18 conference matches. Muey also played in all 36 matches in 2012, and tied a career high with 22 digs in the five-set win at Northern Kentucky on Oct. 27.
Joining Devine and Hardy on the preseason all-conference team were Lipscomb’s Jewell Dobson, Caitlin Dotson, and Lauren Ford, while FGCU’s Jill Hopper and Whitney Masters took the other two slots.
In the preseason coaches poll, FGCU, ETSU, and Lipscomb were the three teams picked to finish atop the league standings.
The Bucs, who return 11 players from last season’s A-Sun Championship squad, were picked to finish second behind reigning regular season champ FGCU in the coaches poll. The Eagles had four first-place votes and 90 total points, while the Blue and Gold had three first-place nods and 85 total points. Lipscomb finished two points behind ETSU in third and last season’s tournament runner-up North Florida was picked fourth with 58 points.
ETSU opens the 2013 season on Friday, Aug. 30 when the Bucs take on UNC Greensboro in Winston-Salem, N.C.
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