Central Islip, N.Y. - The four-time defending regular season champion Dowling College volleyball team has been tabbed as the favorite in the 2009 Preseason Poll as voted by the league's coaches. Dowling's sophomore setter Maja Potpara (Pljevlja, Montenegro) has been voted the Preseason Player of the Year.
The Golden Lions claimed six first-place votes and accumulated 48 total points to earn the No. 1 spot on the poll. Dowling has completed four seasons of undefeated conference play, having not lost a conference match since October 26, 2004 against Queens College. Last year Dowling claimed their fifth consecutive conference tournament title and advanced to the NCAA Northeast Regional. The Golden Lions finished the season with a 33-7 overall record after falling to the University of New Haven in the Finals of the Regional Tournament.
The University of Bridgeport collected 38 points to take the No. 2 spot in the Poll. The Purple Knights completed their most successful season with a 28-14 overall record and received the program's first-ever bid to the NCAA Tournament. Queens College rounds out the top three with 31 points. The Knight also earned a trip to the NCAA Regional Tournament last season and finished with a 25-10 overall record.
Potpara is the defending ECC Player and Rookie of the Year. Last season, she dominated the court averaging 5.35 assists per game, 2.49 kills per game, .46 blocks per game, 1.74 digs per game and ranked 22nd in the nation with .56 aces per game. Potpara garnered Daktronics All-Region Second Team honors and was named the AVCA National Freshman of the Year.
NYIT will kick-off the 2009 season on Thursday, August 27 when take on Concordia College and Southern Connecticut at Southern Connecticut's tournament. Conference play will begin on Thursday, September 17 when Molloy plays hosts to C.W. Post at 7:00 pm.
The East Coast Conference Championships will begin on Friday, November 13. The No. 1 seed will host both semifinal games on November 13 as well as the final on November 14. For more information visit www.eccsports.org.
|2009 ECC Volleyball Preseason Poll|
|1. Dowling (6)||48||16-0||33-7|
|5. C.W. Post (1)||24||9-7||14-14|
Preseason Player of the Year: Maja Potpara, Dowling, So., S