From staff reports
The Cumberland volleyball team was picked ninth in the Mid-South Conference preseason poll in a vote of league coaches announced Thursday.
In his 26th season at the helm for the Volleydawgs, coach Dwayne Deering guides eight returning letterwinners, including three starters from last year’s team. Deering added 11 newcomers in the offseason with six junior college transfers. Senior Mackenzie Gass, a two-time all-cConference selection, returns to lead the squad in her final campaign. Her 300 kills last season led the Bulldogs. The Collierville, Tenn., native added 60 digs and 42 blocks on the year.
Junior Danielle Girardeau also returns for the Bulldogs after posting a team-high 69 blocks last season. The Lake Mary, Fla., native also collected 150 kills and 45 digs.
Reigning MSC champion Georgetown College led the way in the preseason voting, receiving seven first place votes to sit atop the poll. Lindsey Wilson came in behind Georgetown in second with just four points separating the two schools. Campbellsville rounded out the top three.
Shawnee State, Rio Grande and the University of the Cumberlands occupied the fourth through sixth spots, respectively, with St. Catharine seventh, Bluefield eighth and Pikeville rounding out the poll in 10th place.
Cumberland will open the season at home at 6 p.m. Aug. 28 against Tennessee Temple before heading to the Sewanee Invitational the following weekend. The team will play four games in two days beginning Aug. 30 against Pikeville, Pensacola Christian, Brescia and Piedmont .