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UK volleyball chosen preseason favorite to repeat as SEC champion; Wildcats posted 26-5 mark in 2018

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Defending Southeastern Conference champion Kentucky has been picked to win the 2019 SEC volleyball title, according to the SEC preseason coaches’ poll.

The Wildcats, who finished 26-5 overall and 18-0 in the SEC last season, received 11 of the 13 first-place votes and 143 points in the preseason poll. Florida received two-first place votes and 132 points to finish second.

Tennessee took third place with 118 points, while Missouri seized fourth place with 113 points. South Carolina claimed fifth place with 97 points, and Texas A&M took sixth with 88 points.

Leah Edmond

LSU received 82 points to finish seventh, followed by Georgia (58 points) in eighth and Arkansas (52) in ninth. Ole Miss (49) took 10th place, followed by Alabama (46), Auburn (20) and Mississippi State (16) to round out the poll.

Ten players were selected to the 2019 preseason volleyball All-SEC team, including Kentucky standouts Leah Edmond, Gabby Curry and Madison Lilley. Edmond was named SEC Player of the Year last season after finishing with 498 kills. She was also tabbed an AVCA second team All-America selection.

Edmond, a graduate of Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Lexington, also became the fastest player in UK history to amass 1,000 career kills.

Lilley was named the SEC Setter of the Week eight times last season and earned AVCA second team All-America accolades. She averaged 11.30 assists per set, which topped the SEC and ranked 15th nationally.

Curry was selected SEC Libero of the Year last fall after collecting 475 digs. She was also named honorable mention All-American by the AVCA.

The 2019 SEC volleyball season will begin on Aug. 30, and conference play is set to get underway on Sept. 24.

Information compiled from the SEC and University of Kentucky

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