Bulldogs Chosen To Place Third For Second Consecutive Season

Click Here For 2007 GLIAC Women's Volleyball Coaches Preseason Poll Release

Ferris State Volleyball
The Bulldogs were selected to place third by the conference's head coaches in the 2007 GLIAC North Division Volleyball Preseason Poll.
For the second time in as many years, the Ferris State University women's volleyball team has been tabbed to finish third in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference's (GLIAC) North Division for the 2007 season in an announcement made by the conference office.

Ferris State, under 12th-year head coach Tia Brandel-Wilhelm, received 24 points in the preseason volleyball coaches poll as conducted by the league's head coaches. FSU accumulated a third-place 26 points total in last season's preseason poll after registering the identical amount of points but a fourth-place prediction in the 2005 coaches poll.

Grand Valley State, which advanced to the semifinals of the 2006 NCAA Division II Great Lakes Region Tournament and is ranked 11th nationally in the 2007 CSTV/American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Division II Top 25 Coaches Preseason Poll, was voted as the regular-season favorite to win the North Division for the third straight season. The Lakers garnered 36 points along with six of the seven first-place votes. The remaining first-place vote went to Michigan Tech, which also received a second-place 29 points.

The preseason favorite in the South Division was Hillsdale as the Chargers claimed 23 points to go along with three first-place votes. The coaches were accurate in forecasting Hillsdale as the GLIAC's South Division winner in the 2006 preseason. The Chargers, who are ranked 10th in this year's preseason national rankings, posted a 17-0 regular-season conference mark and served as hosts for the 2006 GLIAC Tournament. Ashland, which captured both the GLIAC Tournament and NCAA-II Great Lakes Region Tourney titles last season, picked up two first-place votes and 21 points. The Eagles, who are ranked eighth in the national preseason poll, finished two points ahead of Findlay (19 points and one first-place vote). The league's 13 head coaches voted for the division in which they play, but were not allowed to vote for their own team. The first-place team in the North Division ballot received six points while the second-place team received five points, etc. In the South Division, the first-place team was granted five points while the second-place team took four points, etc.

The GLIAC furthered its reputation of being one of Division II's toughest conferences a season ago, sending five teams - Grand Valley State, Ferris State, Ashland, Hillsdale and Michigan Tech - to the NCAA-II Great Lakes Regional Tournament. A GLIAC-member school emerged as the regional champion for the second straight season as Ashland advanced to the NCAA-II Elite Eight before suffering a season-ending loss to national runner-up North Alabama.

The 2007 season officially starts this Thursday (Aug. 23) while the first conference regular-season matches are set to begin Thursday, Sept. 13. The 2007 GLIAC Volleyball Tournament quarterfinals will be conducted Wednesday, Oct. 31, on campus sites. The semifinals and finals are slated for Friday and Saturday, Nov. 2-3, respectively on the campus of the highest remaining seed.

Ferris State, which compiled the program's ninth consecutive winning campaign in 2006, returns nine letterwinners from last seasonís squad. FSU also made the programís ninth straight conference tournament appearance a year ago as the Bulldogs wrapped up the 2006 campaign at 21-9 overall with a second-place 12-6 mark in the GLIAC's North Division.

Ferris will open its 35th season of varsity competition this weekend (Aug. 24-25) as the Bulldogs host the 12-team Ferris State Invitational in Big Rapids, Mich. The non-league matches will be held at the Ewigleben Sports Arena court along with two courts in Jim Wink Arena all on the FSU campus.

The following is the complete 2007 GLIAC Volleyball Coaches Preseason Poll with first-place votes in parenthesis.

North Division
1. Grand Valley State (6) - 36 points
2. Michigan Tech (1) - 29 points
3. Ferris State - 24 points
4. Northwood - 23 points
5. Northern Michigan - 17 points
6. Lake Superior State - 16 points
7. Saginaw Valley State - 6 points

South Division
1. Hillsdale (3) - 23 points
2. Ashland (2) - 21 points
3. Findlay (1) - 19 points
4. Gannon - 10 points
Wayne State - 10 points
6. Mercyhurst - 7 points

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