Wichita State Shockers

Wichita State voted preseason MVC volleyball favorite

Wichita State volleyball player Abbie Lehman spikes the ball against Evansville last November.
Wichita State volleyball player Abbie Lehman spikes the ball against Evansville last November. The Wichita Eagle

Wichita State is the preseason volleyball favorite in the Missouri Valley Conference.

The Shockers, who return six starters from 2014, received 97 points and seven first-place votes. Second-place Missouri State, Northern Iowa and Southern Illinois also received first-place votes. Defending champion Illinois State is picked fifth.

WSU sophomore middle Abbie Lehman was named to the preseason All-MVC team.

WSU went 20-10 last season and finished third in the MVC with a 13-5 record. It missed the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2006.

The Shockers open the season on Aug. 28 against Oregon State in Hawaii.

WSU cross country picked third — MVC coaches voted the Shockers third in the men’s and women’s cross country polls.

The WSU men received 60 points with one first-place vote, finishing behind defending champion Indiana State’s 72 points and four first-place votes and Bradley’s 69 points and four first-place votes.

The Shockers women earned 77 points. Defending champion Bradley is the favorite with 98 points and eight first-place votes. Illinois State is second with 88 points and two first-place votes.

Reach Paul Suellentrop at 316-269-6760 or psuellentrop@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @paulsuellentrop.

WICHITA STATE VOLLEYBALL SCHEDULE

August

Rainbow Wahine Invitational, Honolulu

28 — vs. Oregon State, 9:30 p.m.

29 — at Hawaii, 11:59 p.m.

30 — vs. Idaho, 7:30 p.m.

September

Texas A&M Invitational

4 — vs. Abilene Christian, 11 a.m.; vs. New Mexico State, 7 p.m.

5 — at Texas A&M, 1 p.m.

Shocker Volleyball Classic

10 — vs. South Dakota State, 12:30 p.m.; vs. Northern Illinois, 7:30 p.m.

11 — vs. Kentucky, 8 p.m.

12 — vs. Illinois, 8 p.m.

Marquette Invitational

18 — at Marquette, 7 p.m.

19 — vs. IUPUI, 10 a.m.; vs. Albany, 5 p.m.

25 — vs. Indiana State, 7 p.m.

26 — vs. Illinois State, 7 p.m.

October

2 — vs. Missouri State, 7 p.m.

5 — at Evansville, 7 p.m.

9 — at Northern Iowa, 7 p.m.

10 — at Drake, 7 p.m.

16 — vs. Bradley, 7 p.m.

17 — vs. Loyola, 7 p.m.

23 — at Illinois State, 6 p.m.

24 — at Indiana State, 6 p.m.

31 — at Missouri State, 7 p.m.

November

2 — at Southern Illinois, 7 p.m.

6 — vs. Drake, 7 p.m.

7 — vs. Northern Iowa, 7 p.m.

13 — at Loyola, 7 p.m.

14 — at Bradley, 7 p.m.

20 — vs. Southern Illinois, 7 p.m.

21 — vs. Evansville, 7 p.m.

26-28 — MVC Tournament, Springfield, Mo.

MVC volleyball poll

1. Wichita State 97 points (7 first-place votes)

2. Missouri State 87 (1)

3. Northern Iowa 76 (1)

4. Southern Illinois 72 (1)

5. Illinois State 63

6. Indiana State 50

7. Loyola 43

8. Drake 25

9. Evansville 22

10. Bradley 15

Preseason All-MVC

MB — Kayla Haneline, Northern Iowa

OH — Lily Johnson, Missouri State

MB — Jaelyn Keene, Illinois State

MB — Abbie Lehman, Wichita State

MB — Taylor Pippen, Southern Illinois

OH — Ashley Rosch, Illinois State

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