MWC Announces Volleyball Preseason Poll and All-Conference Team

Aug. 11, 2005

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -

A voting panel including the nine Mountain West Conference volleyball head coaches and selected media chose BYU as the favorite to win the 2005 MWC regular season title. The Cougars collected seven first-place votes and 108 total points. Utah topped Colorado State for second place as the Utes totaled 106 points, while the Rams had 96 points. Utah and CSU tallied three first-place votes apiece. UNLV was picked fourth, followed by TCU, San Diego State, Wyoming, New Mexico and Air Force.

BYU junior middle blocker Lindsy Hartsock and Colorado State senior outside hitter Tess Rogers highlight the preseason All-MWC team as the preseason Co-Players of the Year. Three MWC teams were represented on the 2005 preseason All-MWC team, which also was selected by the coaches and selected media.

Nine all-Mountain West Conference players return for the 2005 season, including Co-Freshmen of the Year Maria Aladjova (So., OH, UNLV) and Rachel Smith (So., OH, Wyoming). All-conference performers Tess Rogers (Sr., OH) and Dre Downs (Sr., RS/MB) return for regular season co-champion and MWC Tournament champion Colorado State. Downs was named Honorable Mention AVCA All-America in 2004, while Rogers led the MWC in kills (3.92 kpg) last season. Lindsy Hartsock (Jr., MB), Lauren Richards (Sr., S) and Kim Wilson (Sr., OH) will lead the Cougars this season. Hartsock ranked second in the nation in blocks (1.86 per game) as a sophomore, while Richards led the MWC in service aces (0.50 per game) and was third in assists (12.45). Wilson was among MWC leaders for kills and aces. Shelly Sommerfeldt (Sr., OH) and Connie Dangerfield (Jr., L) will lead the Utah attack. Dangerfield was second in the MWC in digs in 2004 (4.17 per game), breaking the MWC single season (467) and tying the league single match (33) mark for digs in the process. Sommerfeldt tallied 3.08 kills per game and an attack percentage of .207 last season.

The 2005 season is set to start on Friday, Aug. 26, with Air Force, UNLV and Wyoming in tournament play. 2004 MWC Co-Champion Utah will also be in action, hosting Idaho State. Conference play begins on Thursday, Sept. 22 with San Diego State hosting defending co-regular season champion and 2004 MWC Tournament champion Colorado State and UNLV hosting Wyoming. The 2005 MWC Volleyball Championship takes place Nov. 22-26 at UNLV.

2005 Preseason All-MWC Team

Player Cl. Pos. Team
Lindsy Hartsock Jr. MB BYU
Erica Lott So. OH BYU
Dre Downs Sr. RS/MB Colorado State
Tess Rogers Sr. OH Colorado State
Shelly Sommerfeldt Sr. OH Utah
 
Setter:Lauren Richards   Sr. BYU
Libero:Connie Dangerfield   Jr. Utah

Preseason Co-Players of the Year: Lindsy Hartsock, BYU/Tess Rogers, Colorado State

2005 Preseason Volleyball Coaches' Poll

Pl. Team (1st place votes) Points
1. BYU (7) 108
2. Utah (3) 106
3. Colorado State (3) 96
4. UNLV 74
5. TCU 62
6. San Diego State 44
7. Wyoming 42
8. New Mexico 37
9. Air Force 16