Aug. 25, 2003
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The JU volleyball team has been picked to finish fifth in the 2003 Atlantic Sun Conference Preseason Coaches Poll, as released by the league office on Monday. The Dolphins, who are in their first season under head coach Courtney Dipert, finished last season 15-14 and advanced to the semifinals of the A-Sun Championship.
Two-time defending champion UCF was tabbed the preseason favorite, receiving eight of the possible 11 first-place votes, while Georgia State, which tied UCF for the regular season title and lost to the Golden Knights in the championship game of the tournament, was picked second. Florida Atlantic, which received the other three first-place votes, and Troy State were also picked ahead of JU. Stetson, Belmont, Mercer, Campbell, Gardner-Webb and conference newcomer Lipscomb round out the poll.
The Dolphins are led by senior outside hitter Radka Dimitrova (Sofia, Bulgaria), who ranked third in the A-Sun in kills (4.21 k/g) and ninth in digs (2.92 d/g) last season en route to First-Team A-Sun All-Conference honors. Also returning is sophomore middle blocker Danielle Neville (Greenwood Village, Colo.), who was named to the A-Sun All-Freshman Team after leading the league in blocks (1.23 b/g).
JU opens the season by hosting the Hampton Inn/JU Invitational Aug. 29-30 at Swisher Gymnasium.
A-Sun Preseason Volleyball Coaches Poll
Rank Pts. 1. UCF (8) 118 2. Georgia St. 106 3. Florida Atlantic (3) 102 4. Troy St. 81 5. Jacksonville 76 6. Stetson 62 7. Belmont 58 8. Mercer 51 9. Campbell 30 10. Gardner-Webb 27 11. Lipscomb 18
Tournament Champion: UCF
( ) - First place votes