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Juniata men's volleyball ranked no. 1 in AVCA preseason poll

(Posted January 12, 2010)

Complete AVCA 2010 Division III men's volleyball preseason poll

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- The Juniata College men's volleyball team will begin the 2010 season in the same place it ended the 2009 campaign - sitting atop the world of Division III men's volleyball.

The Eagles are ranked first in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Division III men's volleyball preseason poll, which was released on Tuesday afternoon.

Juniata earned all 16 first-place votes in the poll and received 240 points. Trailing the Eagles in second place are Springfield College with 215 points, and UC-Santa Cruz in third place with 203 points. Stevens (189 points) and New York University (171 points) round out the top five.

Nazareth College (155 points) holds down the number six spot, with Rivier College (146 points) seventh. Vassar College (130 points), Carthage College (101 points), and Philadelphia Biblical (87 points) are in the eight through ten slots in the poll. Carthage will host this year's Molten Division III Invitational, and receives an automatic entry into the four-team field.

Juniata finished its 2009 season with an 18-8 record, winning the program's sixth Molten Division III championship. The Eagles posted an 8-4 mark in the EIVA Tait Division, advancing to the EIVA Tournament championship match - becoming the first Division III program to reach the title match in one of the three volleyball conferences with an automatic qualifier into the NCAA Men's Volleyball Championship.

The Eagles return the services of five starters and 13 letterwinners from the 2009 squad, including a pair of EIVA All-East performers in outside hitter Zach Wanner (Lancaster, Pa./Hempfield) and libero Anthony Damiano (Lititz, Pa./Manheim Township), as well as AVCA Division III All-America middle hitter Evan Halteman (Perkiomenville, Pa./Christopher Dock).

Juniata opens its 2010 season on Monday, Jan. 18, when it hosts Ohio State University at 6:00 p.m. at the Kennedy Sports + Recreation Center.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.