(Posted August 25, 2010)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- After 29 consecutive conference championships, there wasn't really much doubt about the outcome of the Landmark Conference women's volleyball preseason poll.

But the league's coaches and sports information directors made it official on Wednesday anyway: Juniata College is their pick to win the league's title in 2010.

Juniata tallied 70 points in the voting, beating out second place Susquehanna University by eight points.

Catholic University was third with 51 points, followed by Goucher College with 38 points. Moravian was fifth with 34 points, while the University of Scranton (20 points) and the United States Merchant Marine Academy (19 points) rounded out the poll.

The Eagles, ranked second in the AVCA Division III preseason coaches' poll, posted a 36-4 record last season while advancing to the championship match of the NCAA tournament. Juniata is paced by senior All-America setter Steph Strauss (Penn Hills, Pa./Penn Hills) and All-Region outside hitter Drew Barnhart (Titusville, Pa./Titusville). Junior middle hitter Amanda Schmidt (Boswell, Pa./North Star) captured Most Outstanding Player honors at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional hosted by Juniata.

The Eagles lost the services of three-time All-America libero Megan Sollenberger, but should be helped by the addition of Libby Morrison (Portland, Ore./Oregon Episcopal School), a transfer from Division I Santa Clara University.

Juniata opens its 2010 season on Friday, Sept. 3, when it faces 15th-ranked Christopher Newport University in day one action of Juniata's Asics Invitational tournament.

2010 Preseason Women's Volleyball Poll

1. Juniata College - 70 pts.
2. Susquehanna University - 62 pts.
3. Catholic University - 51 pts.
4. Goucher College - 38 pts.
5. Moravian College - 34 pts.
6. University of Scranton - 20 pts.
7. United States Merchant Marine Academy - 19 pts.


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Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.