BUENA VISTA, Va. — The Southern Virginia University men's volleyball team opens its third season selected No. 13 in the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Preseason Poll and are slotted third in the Continental Volleyball Conference (CVC) Preseason Coaches' Poll.
Southern Virginia ended the season with a 16-8 overall record while earning an 8-5 record in CVC play. The Knights would be the first team in school history to be nationally ranked in the Division III era. The Knights concluded the 2018 season ranked No.14 in the AVCA final poll.
After their first season in the CVC, the Knights sit third behind Kean University No. 4 in the AVCA Preseason Poll and Marymount at No. 12. The CVC has eliminated the two divisions in previous years and will play each team once in conference play.
The Knights return an impressive core, consisting of Paul Clark, Mitch Usevitch, Kaipo Tagaloa, Colby Wilson and Daniel Aina, each playing in every match for Southern Virginia. Additional returners that look to build on strong freshman campaigns are Nahuel Recabarren and Mark Stapley.
Clark was the lone Knight to earn All-CVC first team after leading the team in both kills (277) and kills per set (3.26). He finished second on the team in digs, digs per set, and service aces per set.
Aina was named to the All-CVC Second Team after leading the Knights with 268 digs at the libero spot, averaging 3.09 digs per set placing him second in the conference.
Recabarren returns after winning the CVC Rookie of the Year honors after averaging 3.19 kills per set and finishing in the top-10 in the conference in kills, kills per set, solo blocks, points, and points per set.
Junior setter Tagaloa finished the season sixth in the conference with 821 assists and third in assists per set at 9.66, while the trio of Usevitch, Wilson, and Stapley combined for over 350 kills and 150 total blocks.
Southern Virginia will host No. 15 Elms College Friday, Jan. 18 at 7:00 p.m. in Knight Arena.
2019 CVC Preseason Poll
Team (First Place Votes) Points
1. Kean (11) 132
2. Marymount 114
3. Southern Virginia 107
4. Juniata (1) 104
5. Eastern Mennonite 95
6. Rutgers-Newark 86
7. Ramapo 77
8. Randolph-Macon 59
9. Elizabethtown 50
10. Cairn 46
11. Immaculata 33
12. Neumann 23