BRIDGEPORT — Wheeling and West Virginia State have been selected by the league coaches as the preseason favorites to win their divisions for this upcoming spring volleyball season in the MEC.
For the spring of 2021, the conference has moved to divisonal play.
Each team is scheduled to play each team in its division twice to comprise the 10-game regular season. The top four teams in each division will advance to the MEC Tournament.
The quarterfinals will be played on campus sites, and the semifinals and finals are slated to be played at a singular location.
The regular season gets underway on Tuesday, Feb. 2.
Wheeling is picked to win the North Division with 65 points, including 10 first-place votes.
The Cardinals will lean on two-time Libero of the Year Audrey Francis to lead an otherwise young roster.
Behind the Cardinals is a three-way tie for second with Fairmont State, Notre Dame and West Liberty — all with 46 points. Fairmont State collected two first-place votes. Alderson Broaddus (25) and Frostburg State (18) round out the North Division.
West Virginia State is the pick to win the South Division with 66 points and 11 first-place votes.
The Yellow Jackets have three all-conference players back from their 2019 squad with Jenna Dufresne (first team), Gabrielle Thompson (second team) and Gabrielle Bullock (second team).
Davis & Elkins was picked to finish second in the South Division with 53 points and picked up the remaining first-place vote.
Charleston was next with 49 points, followed by Concord (33), West Virginia Wesleyan (23) and Glenville State (22).
MEC PRESEASON VOLLEYBALL POLL
MEC North Division
1. Wheeling (10) 65
2. Fairmont State (2) 46
Notre Dame 46
West Liberty 46
5 Alderson Broaddus 25
6. Frostburg State 18
MEC South Division
1. West Virginia State (11) 66
2. Davis & Elkins (1) 53
3. Charleston 49
4. Concord 33
5 West Virginia Wesleyan 23
6. Glenville State 22