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Little East announces preseason women’s volleyball poll

            NORTH DARTMOUTH, Mass. - The Little East Conference pre-season women's volleyball coaches' poll has been announced and Plymouth State University is picked to finish fourth in this year's race.  The votes were cast by the conference's head coaches, and the poll was released by LEC Commissioner Jonathan Harper.

            The Panthers received 41 points in the poll and were sandwiched between third-place Western Connecticut State University (44) and fifth-place Eastern Connecticut State University (40).  Defending LEC regular season and tournament runner-up UMass Boston received four first-place votes and 59 points and was picked to win the conference for the first time in LEC history, just ahead of defending regular season and tournament champion Keene State College, which got three top votes and 56 points.  Rounding out the poll was UMass Dartmouth in sixth, Rhode Island College in seventh and the University of Southern Maine in eighth.

            Led by 12th-year head coach Moira Long, PSU is coming off a season that ended with the ECAC New England Tournament championship, the first in school history.  The Panthers finished 22-14 overall, and placed fifth in the LEC with a 2-4 mark.

            The LEC volleyball regular season schedule includes one match against the other seven schools in the league.  The conference tournament is the first week in November, with the LEC champion receiving an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament.

            The complete Little East Conference volleyball preseason poll is listed below: 

2009 LEC Volleyball Pre-Season Coaches Poll

1.        UMass Boston (4)                          59

2.        Keene State (3)                              56

3.        Western Connecticut  (1)               44

4.        Plymouth State                             41

5.        Eastern Connecticut                       40

6.        UMass Dartmouth                          22

7.        Rhode Island College                     16

8.        Southern Maine                              10


           (first-place votes in parentheses)


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