Wildcats picked 3rd

MARQUETTE – The Northern Michigan University volleyball team was picked for third place in the North Division in the GLIAC Preseason Coaches Poll, the league announced Thursday, the same day as GLIAC volleyball media day.

NMU earned 35 points in the poll, which was voted on by the league’s 16 head coaches. Coaches voted in their own division for all teams except their own.

The Wildcats tied for second place last season in the North Division, compiling a 23-10 overall and 15-3 GLIAC record. They are entering their eighth year under head coach Dominic Yoder.

Last season, the Wildcats were picked for fifth in the preseason poll.

During his tenure, Yoder’s teams have earned the second-most GLIAC wins in school history with 89 and are third in overall wins.

NMU opens its season at home at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 4, with a nonconference match against Minnesota-Duluth, then has a tournament at Michigan Tech and five other matches before returning home again nearly three weeks later at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 23, against Michigan Tech.

In the coaches poll, last year’s division champion, Grand Valley State, earned the maximum seven first-place votes and 55 points.

Next was Ferris State with 43. Following Northern in the division are Saginaw Valley State with 31 points, Wayne State with 22, Northwood 19, Michigan Tech 18 and Lake Superior State 8.

In the South Division, Ashland was also picked to defend its divisional title, getting six of a possible seven first-place votes and 48 points. The rest of the division is Hillsdale with 43, Findlay 38, Ohio Dominican 29, Malone 28, Tiffin 17, Walsh 16 and Lake Erie 8.

This season, Hillsdale and Wayne State are switching divisions as there remain eight teams in each division.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.