APSU Sports: Austin Peay Volleyball
Brentwood, TN – Austin Peay State University’s volleyball team was selected to finish ninth in the Ohio Valley Conference’s preseason poll, Wednesday. In addition, senior outside hitter Nikki Doyle was named to the league’s preseason team for the second consecutive season.
The Lady Govs were picked to finish tied for ninth with Eastern Illinois in the 12-team field. Austin Peay returns three starters and eight letterwinners from last season’s team that finished in a three-way tie for fifth place but did not qualify for the then six-team tournament on a tiebreaker.Morehead State was overwhelmingly picked to win the league race, picking up all 22 possible first-place votes and 242 points. They were followed by league newcomer Belmont (198 points) and Southeast Missouri (192), the latter receiving the other two first-place votes. UT Martin (167) and Tennessee State (130) rounded out the top five in the poll.
While the Lady Govs were picked ninth, the preseason poll indicates the league’s coaches and sports information directors predict a tight race for the sixth through 10th spots. Eastern Kentucky (117) was selected sixth followed by SIU Edwardsville (109), Murray State (105) and then Austin Peay and Eastern Illinois (100 each). Jacksonville State and Tennessee Tech rounded out the poll.
“I look at our preseason schedule and believe it will prepare us for the conference schedule,” said Lady Govs head coach Taylor Mott, who enters her first season at Austin Peay after 12 highly successful seasons at Flagler. “I don’t put a lot of stock into the preseason poll, it doesn’t mean a lot to us at this point. I believe we’re going to play hard, the poll isn’t going to change that.”
Doyle, a two-time All-OVC selection, was one of 14 players selected to the league’s 2012 preseason team. She returns after leading the Lady Govs last season with 408 kills (3.83 kills per set) while posting a .230 attack percentage. Doyle finished the season ranked third among OVC hitters with her 3.43 kills per set.
“Nikki is a team player,” said Mott. “She would never take credit for what’s going on but she is a great player. She works hard and leads by example all the time. The team is good because of the way Nikki leads.”
|2012 OVC Volleyball Predicted Team Order of Finish|
|(as Selected by OVC Head Volleyball Coaches and Sports Information Directors)|
|1||Morehead State (22 first Place votes)||242|
|3||Southeast Missouri (2 first place votes)||192|