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Volleyball picked 3rd in conference

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Albany got one first place vote and was picked to finish 3rd.




Boston, Mass. – The University at Albany volleyball team was selected third in the America East Conference preseason poll as voted on by the conference head coaches on August 18. New Hampshire was picked as the favorite, garnering six first-place votes, while Northeastern was ranked second with one first-place vote.


The Great Danes are coming off their most successful season in program history, winning a school record 24 games at the Division I level. Juniors Eileen Nicole Rodriguez and Ashlee Reed were honored as all-conference first-team selections in 2003 and lead a team with nine veterans. An outside hitter, Rodriguez led the squad with 404 kills as a sophomore, in addition to registering a conference-best 143 service aces. Reed is coming off a sophomore campaign in which she registered a team-best .315 hitting percentage along with 354 kills and a team-high 90 blocks at middle blocker.


Other returning starters include sophomore Ashley DeNeal at outside hitter who was tabbed America East Rookie of the Year, and classmate Blair Buchanan at setter who earned a spot on the conference all-rookie team.


Two newcomers join head coach Kelly Sheffield’s squad in freshman middle Ashley Crenshaw and junior transfer Ashley Hunter at outside hitter.


UAlbany opens its 2004 schedule at IUPU-Fort Wayne on Sept 1 when the Great Danes start their run at a third straight appearance in the America East Tournament.

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