Aug. 27, 2009
HOUSTON - The Baylor volleyball team gets underway this weekend at the Flo Hyman Invitational tournament, hosted by the University of Houston. The Bears open play on Friday with an 11:30 a.m. match against Southeastern Louisiana before playing Houston at 7:30 p.m.
Bears Tabbed Fifth by Coaches
The Bears were picked fifth in the Big 12 Preseason Coaches’ Poll announced on Aug. 22 by conference officials. Baylor received 63 points, just five behind fourth-place Texas A&M. Texas and Nebraska were picked first and second, respectively, while Iowa State was picked third. Texas received eight first-place votes, while Nebraska tallied three.
Out of the Blocks
In the Jim Barnes era, the Bears have become accustomed to starting the season off on the right foot. After losing the season-opener in Barnes’ first season, Baylor has won its first game of the season each of the last four years. In 2008, Barnes’ crew ripped off eight consecutive wins to open the season, losing just three sets along the way. That streak included a 13-set winning streaking, starting with the last two sets at Texas State and ending with a third-set loss against Rice.
All-Big 12 Preseason Team
For the second-straight season, Taylor Barnes and Anna Breyfogle were named to the preseason All-Big 12 team. Barnes, a senior setter, was named to the preseason team for the third-straight year. In 2008, she parlayed her preseason accolade into All-Big 12 First Team postseason honors, leading the Big 12 in service aces per set. Barnes also earned all-AVCA central region honors and ranked fourth in the Big 12 with 10.32 assists per set. Breyfogle, a senior middle blocker, earned the preseason honor for the second-straight year. Like Barnes, Breyfogle also earned both All-Big 12 First Team and all-AVCA central region honors in 2008. The Buda, Texas, native led the Big 12 in blocks per set with 1.45, while ranking seventh in the nation in that category.
Additions and Subtractions
Baylor lost just one letterwinner from its 2008 squad, while adding the three recruits that make up the 14th-ranked class in the nation, according to Prepvolleyball.com. Amarillo’s (Texas) Torri Campbell, ranked 30th in the country, enters Baylor as its second-highest ranked recruit in program history. Zoe Adom, a super-athletic outside hitter from Euless, Texas, and Kiley Sherman, a versatile outside and defensive player from Oswego, Ill., round out the class for the Bears.
On the Campaign Trail
Baylor received votes in the Preseason AVCA Division I Coaches Top 25 Poll released on Tuesday afternoon by American Volleyball Coaches Association officials. The Bears received five points in the poll, ranking them 44th among all vote getters. Baylor is one of six Big 12 teams receiving votes in the poll, led by preseason Big 12 favorite Texas and Nebraska, ranked second and third. Penn State topped the preseason ranking, receiving 1,487 points and 52 first-place votes.