Wildcat volleyball picked fifth by NSIC coaches
The Wayne State volleyball team was picked to finish fifth in the 2018 preseason NSIC volleyball coaches poll.
The Wildcats received 164 points in voting conducted by league coaches. Wayne State returns five starters from last year’s team that was 19-12 overall and tied for seventh in the NSIC with a 12-8 league mark.
Defending NCAA Div. II national champion Concordia-St. Paul was selected the unanimous favorite to win the NSIC this season. The Golden Bears received 15 first-place votes and 225 points followed by Southwest Minnesota State in second at 210 points and the remaining first-place vote. (Coaches can not vote for their own team.)
Minnesota Duluth came in third at 194 points followed by Northern State (176 pts) and Wayne State fifth with 164 points. Augustana was sixth (145) followed by Winona State (138), Upper Iowa (130), Sioux Falls (123) and Minnesota State (102) closing out the top 10.
Wayne State’s player to watch in the NSIC this season is senior setter Megan Gebhardt. The Lutheran High Northeast graduate is a two-year starter for the Wildcats and averaged 9.60 assists per set last season to rank seventh in the NSIC with six double-doubles. Gebhardt also excels in the classroom, earning CoSIDA Academic All-American Second Team honors with a 4.00 grade-point average majoring in finance.
Wayne State, who has been ranked in every regular season AVCA Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll since Sept. 28, 2009, is scheduled to open the 2018 season on Friday, Aug. 24 at the Embry-Riddle Tournament in Daytona Beach, Florida vs. Westminster (Utah) at 11 a.m.