(From MSSU Lions Athletic News)
Kansas City, Mo. -- The Missouri Southern volleyball team has been picked to finish 11th by the coaches in the MIAA preseason volleyball poll as the league announced today.
The Lions finished 11th in the final 2016 standings and return 11 players off of that roster with eight newcomers coming to the fold. Seniors Alyx Gepford and Bailey Rexford will help provide leadership to the team in coach John Napier's third season.
Southern will open the 2017 season with a tournament in Nebraska at Concordia University on September 1-2. The Lions then play host to the Townplace Suites Invitational on September 8-9 and are back on the road with a tournament at Southern Nazarene the next weekend. The MIAA opener will be on September 22 at home against Central Oklahoma at 6 pm.
Nebraska-Kearney was the league favorite to repeat as MIAA champs and picked up ten of the 12 first-place votes. Central Oklahoma was second, followed by Washburn, Central Missouri and Northwest Missouri to round out the top five spots. Fort Hays State, Missouri Western, Emporia State, Lindenwood, Pittsburg State, Southern and Southwest Baptist round out the poll.
The complete poll is listed below.
2017 MIAA Preseason Coaches Poll
1. Nebraska-Kearney (10) 120
2. Central Oklahoma (1) 105
3. Washburn (1) 101
4. Central Missouri 98
5. Northwest Missouri 77
6. Fort Hays State 62
7. Missouri Western 57
8. Emporia State 55
9. Lindenwood 49
10. Pittsburg State 35
11. Missouri Southern 18
12. Southwest Baptist 15