Aug 26, 2013
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) – For the second consecutive season and the third time in the last four years, the 18th-rated Florida State indoor volleyball team has been selected to win the Atlantic Coast Conference as voted on by the league’s 15 head coaches.
The Seminoles accumulated the maximum possible point total of 196. First-place votes were awarded 14 points, second place received 13 points, etc. Coaches were not allowed to include their own team in their predicted order of finish.
“We are excited about the season and feel that we have a lot of talent on the team,” head coach Chris Poole said. “The preseason poll is great for the fans to get excited about our season starting, but we realize that the matches have to be played. We have teams returning a lot more starters than we are this year and new teams joining our league that we know very little about at this point.
“The ACC has definitely improved over the last four years and I expect this season to be very competitive. There is a lot of great talent in this league and fans have the opportunity to see a lot of great volleyball this season.”
North Carolina picked up 178 points for second place, while Miami (169), Notre Dame (153) and NC State (133) rounded out the top five. Duke’s 126 points placed it ahead of Virginia Tech (122), Clemson (109), Georgia Tech (82) and Maryland (81). Virginia (64), Syracuse (51), Pitt (49), Boston College (33) and Wake Forest (29) completed the poll.
Miami also received the other first-place vote.
In addition to Florida State’s first-place prediction, returning AVCA All-American middle blocker Ashley Neff and outside hitter Olivera Medic were named to the 18-player Preseason All-ACC Team. A total of 10 teams were represented on the 2013 squad. Miami led all conference schools with four selections, followed by Duke, Florida State, Maryland, North Carolina and Notre Dame with two selections apiece.
“I am honored that Ashley and Oli were named to the Preseason All-ACC Team, but I certainly feel like we have other players that are ready to step up big for us this season as well,” Poole added.
The Seminoles return nine letterwinners from a season ago. Despite losing one of the most successful senior classes in school history, Florida State joins the 2010 and 2012 squads that also garnered first-place predictions, while the 2011 NCAA National Semifinal team and the 2009 NCAA Regional Final squad were each chosen second.
Florida State has won back-to-back ACC titles for the first time in the conference since Maryland achieved the feat in 2003 and 2004. The Seminoles are looking to become the first three-time defending champion since North Carolina from 1999-2001.
Florida State won the ACC in 2012 with an 18-2 conference record for the second consecutive season. The Garnet and Gold have now gone 36-4 in the ACC over the last two seasons, which is the fourth-best two-year record by any team in ACC history.
The Noles prepare for the 2013 season as they open at the Long Beach State Mizuno Invitational on Aug. 30-31. The 18th-ranked Seminoles battle Illinois in the season opener this Friday at 2 p.m. ET, followed by 17th-ranked Kentucky the same day at 8 p.m. ET. The tournament finishes with a matchup at Long Beach State on Saturday at 10 p.m. ET.
Follow Florida State indoor volleyball on Seminoles.com as well as on the team’s official Twitter (@FSU_Volleyball) and Facebook pages (Facebook.com/FSUVolleyball).