Volleyball Ranked 10th in AVCA Preseason Poll
SALT LAKE CITY – The AVCA preseason spring rankings came out on Tuesday, January 5 and the Utah volleyball team is ranked 10th.
This is the highest preseason ranking in program history. The highest ranking previously was 13 in 2002.
This past season, Utah made its second Sweet 16 in three years and return three AVCA All-Americans, including Dani Drews on the first team and Kenzie Koerber on the second team. The team finished the season 24-10 falling in the Sweet 16 to eventual national champion Stanford in five sets. The Utes were the only team in the NCAA Tournament to win a set off the Cardinal.
Drews had a historic season setting a new single-season record in kills with 643 and was named the Pacific South Region Player of the Year. In Pac-12 play, Drews was third overall averaging 4.76 kills per set. She had 15 matches with over 20 kills and two matches with over 30.
Koerber earned Second Team All-American honors after being a force on the right side all season. She was the only Pac-12 student-athlete to earn Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week and Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week honors. Along with her strong offensive numbers, Koerber was great on defense as well being third on the team with 109 blocks and second on the team with 323 digs.
Saige Ka'aha'aina-Torres is the third All-American back this year after earning honorable mention honors. In her first season starting, she set a Utah single-season record with 1,518 assists. Ka'aha'aina-Torres had 10 matches with at least 50 assists and two matches with 67 assists. That's the most assists a Utah setter has had since 2010 and Ka'aha'aina-Torres did it twice.
Overall, Utah returns 10 players from a season ago. The schedule for the season will be announced later.