Pitt women’s volleyball team 12th in preseason poll
The Pitt women’s volleyball team, the two-time defending ACC champion, begins its season Aug. 30 with the Panther Challenge at Fitzgerald Field House, and the Panthers will head into that event with a No. 12 national ranking.
The American Volleyball Coaches Association released its Division I preseason poll Tuesday afternoon, and Pitt is the highest-rated ACC squad.
It is the highest preseason ranking in program history.
“Noting the amount of talent that we return this year, it’s great to be recognized by fellow coaches,” coach Dan Fisher said in a news release. “It’s a privilege for us to see these high expectations of our program.”
Highest @AVCAVolleyball preseason ranking in program history.
Let's get it.
— Pitt Volleyball (@Pitt_VB) August 13, 2019
Pitt began last season’s run to the conference championship with a No. 20 preseason ranking.
The only other time the Panthers appeared in the AVCA preseason poll was in 1992 when they checked in at No. 25.
Pitt placed 14th in the final 2018 AVCA poll.
The Panthers return five of seven starters from the 2018 squad that finished in the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a 30-2 overall record and a 17-1 mark in ACC play.
Four ranked teams are on the Panthers’ schedule: No. 8 Penn State (Sept. 20 and 22), No. 11 Oregon (Sept. 11), No. 23 Cal Poly (Sept. 13) and No. 25 Louisville (Oct. 27 and Nov. 27).
Stanford is ranked No. 1, and it received 62 first-place votes. Nebraska picked up a first-place vote and is No. 2. The rest of the top 11 in front of Pitt is Minnesota, Texas, Wisconsin, Illinois, Kentucky, Penn State, BYU, Florida and Oregon.
Michael Love is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Michael at 412-856-7400 x8632, [email protected] or via Twitter .