ACU unanimous for top spot, Zias ranked fourth

Freedom Newspapers

Freedom Newspapers
RICHARDSON, Texas — Eastern New Mexico University has been picked for fourth place — one point behind Angelo State — in the Lone Star Conference South Division preseason poll, released Friday by the league office.
Defending champion Abilene Christian, which ended West Texas A&M’s seven-year run atop the South last season, was a unanimous choice for the top spot with 17 first-place votes and 102 points in balloting by coaches, sports information directors and media representatives.
WT, which slumped to a 3-7 South mark last year after going 75-1 in division play from 1997-2003, came in second in the poll with 73 points, followed by Angelo State (60), ENMU (59), Texas A&M-Kingsville (39) and Tarleton State (24).
Under seventh-year coach Brek Horn, Abilene Christian returns four starters and four other letterwinners from last year’s 28-8 team which made the school’s first appearance in NCAA Division II regional competition.
ENMU, meantime, finished 25-9 (7-3 South) last season and reached the regional semifinals, where the Zias lost to then-unbeaten and top-ranked host Nebraska-Kearney.
Zais coach Mike Maguire is entering his 18th season as head coach. His teams have posted winning records for the past 16 years.
In the LSC North, Central Oklahoma received 15 of 18 first-place votes and the Bronchos were a solid choice to win their fourth division title in five years. UCO finished second in 2004 to Cameron, which got the other three first-place votes and edged Texas Woman’s for second place in the poll.

LSC volleyball polls

South Division
Team (1st-pl. votes) Pts.
1. Abilene Christian (17) 102
2. West Texas A&M 73
3. Angelo State 60
4. Eastern New Mexico 59
5. Texas A&M-Kingsville 39
6. Tarleton State 24
North Division
Team (1st-pl. votes) Pts.
1. Central Oklahoma (15) 123
2. Cameron (3) 97
3. Texas Woman’s 93
4. Midwestern State 79
5. Texas A&M-Commerce 50
6. Southeastern Oklahoma 36
7. Southwestern Oklahoma 26