Endicott Earns Top Spot in CCC Women’s Volleyball Preseason Poll

Endicott Earns Top Spot in CCC Women’s Volleyball Preseason Poll

2017 CCC Women's Volleyball Preseason Poll Video

 

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Last season Endicott ended Roger Williams's seven-year run as Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) Women's Volleyball Tournament Champions and this year they were picked to defend that title. The Gulls earned 96 points in the 2017 CCC Women's Volleyball Preseason Coaches' Poll.

The defending champions earned six of a possible 10 first place votes in the voting which was conducted last week by the 10 CCC women's volleyball head coaches.

In 2016, the Gulls put together a perfect 9-0 CCC (22-12 overall) record and earned the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament. They cruised through the tournament without dropping a single set, but fell to Springfield in the First Round of the NCAA Women's Volleyball Championship. The league title was Endicott's first conference crown since 2008.

Roger Williams checked in at No. 2 in this year's poll earning 91 points and the remaining four first place votes. The Hawks completed the year with an 8-1 CCC (19-8 overall) mark and claimed the No. 2 seed in the tournament. However, they were bounced early dropping their quarterfinal match with the University of New England.

Western New England, the 2016 CCC Tournament runner-up, slotted into the third spot in this year's rankings. The Golden Bears, which collected 76 points in the poll, finished last season's campaign at 7-2 (21-10 overall) in conference play.

Salve Regina and Wentworth claimed the No. 4 and No. 5 spots with 68 points and 58 points, respectively.

Gordon (57 points), the University of New England (45), Curry (27), Eastern Nazarene (20), and Nichols (13) rounded out the ledger.

The first volleyball matches for CCC teams are on Friday, Sept. 1 with nine of the 10 teams in non-conference action. First serve in conference play is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 14 with Curry taking on Gordon. The other teams will have their first league matches later that week. The top eight teams in the conference standings at the end of the regular-season will earn berths into the CCC Championship Tournament. The tournament begins Tuesday, Oct. 31 with the quarterfinal round and concludes on Saturday, Nov. 4 with the championship match. The CCC Women's Volleyball Tournament Champion will earn the league's automatic qualifier into the 2017 NCAA Women's Volleyball Championship.

Click HERE to view the whole 2017 CCC women's volleyball schedule.

 

2017 CCC Women's Volleyball Preseason Coaches' Poll

  Team Points (First Place Votes)
1. Endicott 95 (6)
2. Roger Williams 91 (4)
3. Western New England  76
4. Salve Regina  68
5. Wentworth  58
6. Gordon  57
7. University of New England 45
8. Curry 27
9. Eastern Nazarene 20
10. Nichols 13

 

2017 CCC Women's Volleyball Previews

 

1. Endicott

The defending CCC Champions will look to continue their winning ways from last season. 2016 Coach of the Year Tim Byram will rely on his returning players, which include three All-CCC selections, as well as a strong freshmen class to pave the way to the program's sixth conference championship. Mareena Clotfelter (Poulsbo, Wash.) and Lauren Sheehan (Bainbridge Island, Wash.) were both named to the 2016 All-CCC Second Team and will lead the charge for the Gulls. Endicott opens the season on Friday, Sept. 1 when they face Emmanuel in the Springfield College Invitational.

 

  

    Mareena Clotfelter, EC

2. Roger Williams

The Women's Volleyball team had another strong season, finishing the regular season 19-8 overall and 8-1 in the CCC, earning the No. 2 seed for the conference tournament. The Hawks finished the season ranked 12th in the New England Region. Four student-athletes earned spots on the All-CCC team as well as six student-athletes being named to the CCC All-Academic team. Though the Hawks graduated CCC Senior Scholar-Athlete of the Year Kristen Boyer, the Hawks will bring in five new recruits to help fill the void. In addition, the Hawks also return 2016 All-CCC First Team selection junior Molly Quilty (Duxbury, Mass.).

  Molly Quilty, RWU

3. Western New England

Western New England enjoyed another successful campaign in 2016, earning a trip to the CCC championship match following five consecutive semifinal round exits. The Golden Bears went 21-10 (7-2 CCC) last fall in the first season under the leadership of head coach Samantha Shomo '11.

Senior outside hitter Emmaline Chiodini (St. Louis, Mo.) is the team's lone returning All-Conference performer after averaging 3.47 digs and 2.32 kills per set during her first season with the program. Sophomore Caitlyn Sibiskie (Rockfall, Conn.) will take over setting duties, while classmate Cassandra Holmes (Ellington, Conn.) will look to follow up her successful freshman campaign at middle hitter.

Western New England plays its first 11 matches of 2017 on the road, including four at the season-opening University of California-Santa Cruz Slugfest on Sept. 1-2. The Golden Bears open their home slate against Elms on Sept. 19, before traveling to Eastern Nazarene for their CCC opener the next day.

   Emmaline Chiodini, WNE

4. Salve Regina

Head coach Lauren Parsons enters her sixth season at the helm of the Seahawks program. The team has made the playoffs in all five of her previous seasons including two conference championship matches.  After making it to the semifinals last season the team returns all but one player from that squad. The Seahawks return four All-CCC players who will be keys for this season. Middle blocker Annie Donahue (Chelmsford, Mass.) was named to the First Team while Cassidy Trablicy (Phoenix, Ariz.) and Megan Parham took home Second Team honors. Samantha Higgins (Coventry, R.I.) rounded out the Seahawks award winners with a third team selection. Parham will spend the entire year studying abroad. After having played so many underclassmen last season, this year's team will benefit from that experience and look to make a deep run in the playoffs with the addition of some talented newcomers. Samantha Salwa (Ellington, Conn.) returns for her fourth season and second as captain.

 

 

   Samantha Higgins/Samantha SalwaSRU

5. Wentworth

Losing just one senior from the most successful season in program history in 2016, the Wentworth Institute of Technology women's volleyball team looks to contest for the CCC title with 12 letter winners expected to return. The Leopards, which finished 23-6 and hosted a playoff match for the first time in program history in 2016, will be led by sophomore Leah Rogoz (Woodbridge, Ill.), last year's conference Rookie of the Year and a First Team All-CCC selection. Rogoz averaged 3.24 kills and 3.23 digs per set to become the first player in program history to take home top rookie honors. Classmate Claire Quick (Mission Viejo, Calif.) also returns after a season that saw her named Third Team All-CCC. Quick averaged 2.77 kills and 3.19 digs per set during her rookie season. Classmate Samantha Lassiter (Rogers, Ark.) hit a program-best and conference-leading .359 as a freshman to go along with averaging 0.76 blocks per set while sophomore Lillie Clark (Vista, Calif.) averaged 4.28 digs and 0.56 aces per set. Rounding out a solid sophomore class is Katie Clouse (Hudson Falls, N.Y.) who averaged 5.00 assists per set. Seniors Katelyn Carlson (Stratford, Conn.) and Caroline Shea (Abington, Mass.) are expected to make contributions. Carlson averaged 4.15 assists and 2.04 digs per set as a junior and Shea contributed with 1.58 kills per set.

 

   Leah Rogoz, WIT

6. Gordon

Gordon returns junior Renee Cooprider (Hopkinton, Mass.) who was All-CCC Third Team last season and led the team with 827 assists. Junior Mackenzie Hinds (Higganum, Conn.) was second on the team with 198 kills and second in aces with 36. Senior Meghan Hokanson (Coon Rapids, Minn.) led the team in blocks with 56 and was third in kills with 166. The Fighting Scots open the season at Worcester Polytechnic Institute on Sept. 1. They host Curry Sept. 14 to open CCC play.

 
Renee Cooprider, GC

7. University of New England

The University of New England and 38th-year head coach Karol L'Heureux have three starters returning from the 2016 team, which went 3-6 in league action before knocking off second-seeded Roger Williams to reach the CCC semifinals. Junior Rene Roggenbuck (Goffstown, N.H.) is back from leading the squad in points/set (2.79), a figure that included 2.04 kills/set and 0.74 blocks/set. The lone senior is Kristen Falcinelli (Silver Spring, Md.), who dialed up 8.23 assists/set to go with a team-best 46 aces.

 

 

 
Kristen Falcinelli, UNE

8. Curry

Curry will look to improve upon last year's success which saw its best overall record at 10-14 and conference record at 2-7, with their season culminating in the program's first CCC Tournament appearance. The Colonels will be under the direction of Bori May, who enters his first season at the helm. The squad will look for offensive leadership from senior Nicole Rice (Woburn, Mass.), junior Grace Stafford (West Yarmouth, Mass.) and sophomores Erika Costa (Seekonk, Mass.) and Caroline Kilduff (Rockland, Mass.). Courtney Carroll (Fairhaven, Mass.) will continue to lead the team defensively as libero and defensive specialist while Rice returns to her starting position as middle blocker. The Colonels are also looking forward to the addition of several talented freshmen.

 
Courtney Carroll, CC

9. Eastern Nazarene

The Eastern Nazarene women's volleyball team opens its 47th season of competition Sept. 1 at home against Salem State and Mount Ida. Head coach Derek Schmitt begins his second stint with the Lions after leading the then-Crusaders to 51 victories from 2002-04. Eastern Nazarene returns six student-athletes from last fall. Sophomore Courtney McCarthy (Merrimack, N.H.) registered 103 kills to rank second on the team last season while senior Kayla Dean (Lansdale, Pa.) notched 188 digs, 97 kills, 32 aces, and 25 assists.

 
Kayla Dean, ENC

10. Nichols

The Nichols College volleyball team underwent a facelift this offseason and will begin its second season of varsity competition led by veteran coach Peter Maneggia. Sophomores Megan Gardner (South Deerfield, Mass.) and Sabrina Boermeester (Billerica, Mass.) anchor this unit as Gardner led the team with 289 assists while Boermeester is the top returner in kills with 130. Junior Moriah Burns (Holland, Mass.) looks to build upon her sophomore campaign as well after notching 153 aces, 73 digs, 24 kills, and 20 service aces.

  
Sabrina Boermeester, NC

 

 

 

Season previews contributed by each school's sports information department.

 

ABOUT THE COMMONWEALTH COAST CONFERENCE

The Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC), founded in 1984, is an NCAA Division III athletic conference comprised of ten full member and four associate member institutions throughout the New England region. Its membership aims to provide student-athletes with a positive experience in their pursuit of excellence through high academic standards, quality competition, and a meaningful student life. The conference will administer championships in 18 intercollegiate sports starting in the 2017-18 academic year.

 

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