BOSTON-- The University of New Hampshire women's volleyball team was selected third in the America East preseason coaches poll announced Monday afternoon by the conference office.
The Wildcats earned 28 points in the poll for the third ranking, while the University at Albany was chosen by the seven head coaches to repeat as America East champions with 36 points and six first-place votes. The University of Maine placed second with 29 points and one first-place tally.
The Wildcats will be captained in 2005 by senior middle hitter Erin Walker (Fulton, N.Y.), who led the team in kills last season and was an America East All-Conference selection. UNH features three players from New Hampshire including senior middle hitter Karen Harrington (Windham) and freshman outside hitter Caitlin Dowd (Portsmouth), who was the 2004 Class L Player of the Year leading Portsmouth High School to a state championship last season.
The Wildcats open the season Friday, August 26th vs. San Francisco at the Delaware Tournament in Newark. Match time is 4:30 p.m. UNH opens its home schedule in Durham on Tuesday, August 30 against St. Peter's College (7 p.m.) at Lundholm Gym. The Wildcats will also face 2004 defending national champion Stanford University on Tuesday, Sept. 6th (7 p.m.) on "Pack the Arena Night" at Lundholm Gymnasium.
2005 America East Preseason Poll
1. Albany (6) 36
2. Maine (1) 29
3. New Hampshire 28
4. UMBC 17
Stony Brook 17
6. Binghamton 14
7. Hartford 6