Aug. 29, 2011
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) – The Florida State University Indoor Volleyball team has taken the 25th spot in the latest American Volleyball Coaches Association poll released on Monday afternoon.
The Seminoles began the preseason receiving 61 votes in the poll, sitting just outside the Top 25. However, a 3-0 performance at this past weekend’s Florida State Invitational that included victories over three NCAA Tournament Teams from 2010 was good enough to move into the national rankings.
Included in FSU’s weekend wins was a victory over then-No. 23 Tulsa in four sets and an impressive opening night win in three sets over Kentucky, which had taken the Seminoles to five sets in their previous two meetings in 2009 and 2010.
The Seminoles have now made their way into the AVCA Top 25 Poll in each of the last three seasons. Prior to the 2009 season, which was head coach Chris Poole’s second year at FSU, the Seminoles hadn’t been nationally ranked since earning the 22nd spot on Sept. 22, 1998.
FSU has now enjoyed 39 weeks in the AVCA Poll, which includes preseason rankings in 1998 and 2010. It was last in the national poll on Oct. 25, 2010, at No. 25. Poole, who is now in his fourth season with the Seminoles, has guided the Garnet and Gold to 25 weeks in the Top 25 since arriving in 2008.
FSU Invitational MVP Jekaterina Stepanova added to the Seminoles’ accolades when she was named the American Volleyball Scouting Report Player of the Week. The senior outside hitter from Riga, Latvia compiled a .339 hitting percentage, 26 kills and 31 digs in victories over Kentucky, Albany and then-No. 23 Tulsa.
Stepanova’s award means that a Seminole has won the AVSR Player of the Week honor for two consecutive weeks. The organization’s last weekly award in 2010 was given to FSU’s Rachael Morgan, who has been named as the organization’s player of the week four times.