FOREST, Va. – Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) volleyball coaches picked Guilford College sixth in their annual preseason poll, which was released Wednesday. The Quakers earned 89 points in the poll.
Defending ODAC champion Washington and Lee University picked up eight first-place votes and 139 points to earn the top spot. Randolph-Macon College, the 2018 ODAC Tournament runner-up, earned 135 points with four first-place votes to secure second place. Bridgewater College rounded out the top three with one first-place vote and 116 points.
Quakers' head coach Emily Gann returns 14 letter winners from last season, including two 2018 All-ODAC honorees in second-team selection Tina Eucker and third-team pick Christian Ritter. Eucker ranked third in the conference in assists per set (9.03) and recorded 17 double-doubles last year. She enters her senior season ranked second in school history in career assists (2,373). Ritter led the Quakers in kills (3.01), digs (4.03), and points (3.3) per set last season. She starts her senior campaign ranked third in school history with 1,182 digs.
Guilford went 16-10 in 2018 with a 7-5 conference mark. The Quakers advanced to the ODAC Tournament quarterfinals before falling to eventual tournament champion Washington and Lee.
Guilford kicks off the 2019 season at the Emory Classic hosted by defending NCAA Division III national champion Emory University August 30-31. The Eagles are ranked first in the preseason American Volleyball Coaches Association national rankings. The Quakers' first home match is Wednesday, September 4 against Pfeiffer University at 7 p.m. in Ragan-Brown Field House. Guilford opens conference play September 11 with a home match versus Ferrum College. ODAC Tournament play begins November 6, with the final set for November 9.
2019 Volleyball Coaches' Poll (first-place votes in parentheses)
1. Washington and Lee (8) 139, 2. Randolph-Macon (4) 135, 3. Bridgewater (1) 116, 4. Virginia Wesleyan 109, 5. Roanoke 103, 6. Guilford 89, 7. Lynchburg 85, 8. Shenandoah 52, 9. Eastern Mennonite 48, 10. Emory & Henry 46, 11. Randolph 44, 12. Ferrum 30, 13. Hollins 18