Volleyball picked fourth in A-Sun preseason coaches poll
Senior libero Shelley Walroth was selected to the A-Sun All-Preseason Team
Senior libero Shelley Walroth was selected to the A-Sun All-Preseason Team
The JU volleyball team is eight days away from opening the regular season in Orlando but the Dolphins learned their preseason ranking this week as the squad was selected to finish fourth in the 2009 A-Sun Preseason Coaches Poll.

Lipscomb was tabbed the preseason favorite with 111 points (five first-place votes) while reining tournament champion Belmont and regular-season champ Florida Gulf Coast (three first-place votes apiece) rounded out the top three. JU, Mercer, ETSU, UNF, Kennesaw State, Campbell, Stetson and USC Upstate rounded out the rest of the field, respectfully.

“It's always fun to see the polls come out because it means we're close to hitting the court again, but in reality they mean very little,” said Kupferberg. “So much changes as the season progresses - developing talent, team chemistry and injuries - that the team doesn't resemble what we have on our court right now. With that said, I like where we are starting from and I think we'll look good in November.”

Along with the fourth-place selection, senior libero Shelley Walroth was named to the preseason all-conference team for the second straight season.

Walroth, who holds the single season and career records at JU for digs, became the first Dolphin to garner A-Sun Defensive “Player of the Year” honors and also earned first team all-conference accolades in 2008.

In the A-Sun record book, Walroth is 99 digs shy of surpassing Lipscomb’s Anne Mullins (1,969) and she is 129 shy of becoming the 26th player in Division I history to tally 2,000 career digs. Walroth, who led the conference in digs, ranked fourth in the nation with an average of 5.87 digs per set.

“Shelley’s honor is well deserved,” Kupferberg said. “She put in a lot of time and effort to get where she is right now and I'm excited for her to see the results that are to come this year.”

Prior to opening the regular season, the Dolphins will play their annual Alumni Game at Swisher Gymnasium on Aug. 22 at 5 p.m.