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Cal Poly Volleyball Picked to Win Big West in Preseason Coaches Poll

Cal Poly Volleyball Picked to Win Big West in Preseason Coaches Poll


SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Coming off its second consecutive Big West championship in 2018, the Cal Poly volleyball team was selected to three-peat in 2019 following the Wednesday release of the Big West Preseason Coaches Poll.

The Mustangs, who have gone 31-1 in conference matches the past two seasons, received five first-place votes and a total of 77 points from the nine head coaches in the conference. Hawai'i, who finished second last season, was picked to finish second this season. They received four first-place votes and a total of 76 points. UC Santa Barbara (59 points), UC Irvine (52 points), and Long Beach State (46 points) rounded out the rest of the top five.

Last season, Cal Poly led the Big West in hitting percentage (seventh in the nation) at .290, opponent hitting percentage (.177), kills per set (13.76), assists per set (12.88), and blocks per set (2.45).

The Mustangs return 14 players from last year's team — including five starters. Those include reigning Big West Player of the Year and AVCA All-American opposite hitter Torrey Van Winden, setter and last year's Big West Co-Freshman of the Year Avalon DeNecochea, Big West First-Team middle blocker Madilyn Mercer, Big West Honorable Mention honoree and All-Freshman Team middle blocker Meredith Phillips and a host of other strong contributors.

This would be the first Big West three-peat in program history if the team wins the conference this season. Overall, the Mustangs have won the Big West five times: 1984, 2006, 2007, 2017, 2018.

Cal Poly begins its season August 30 against No. 7 Kentucky at the University of Utah Tournament.