RAINBOW WAHINE VOLLEYBALL
Expectations don't change for Wahine
To whom much is given, much is expected.
That's the theme for the Hawaii women's volleyball team. The Western Athletic Conference coaches expect a lot from its flagship program as evidenced by the results of the preseason All-WAC team announced yesterday.
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For the third consecutive year, a Rainbow Wahine was selected as the preseason player of the year. Junior hitter Jamie Houston, who spent part of the summer with the U.S. national A2 team, continued the UH reign set by Kanoe Kamana'o the past two years.
"Without the coaching staff and my teammates, I wouldn't be the player that I am," Houston said. "Without their help, there is no WAC player of the year here.
"It's a credit to the coaching staff. Without them, we wouldn't be where we are."
Hawaii again is at the top of the WAC, both in the preseason poll (1) and in the number of players named to the preseason team (4).
Joining Houston on the 12-member team were senior middles Kari Gregory and Juliana Sanders, and junior hitter Tara Hittle, the WAC freshman of the year in 2004, who missed most of last season with an injury. New Mexico State and San Jose State both had two players named, while Nevada, Idaho, Utah State and Louisiana Tech had one each; Boise State and Fresno State had none.
"It's a good way to start the season," Gregory said. "There are a lot of expectations for this year."
» Complete team
Preseason Player of the Year: Jamie Houston, Hawaii
Preseason All-WAC team
Niki Clement, Jr., San Jose State
Teal Ericson, Sr., Nevada
Kari Gregory, Sr., Hawaii
Tara Hittle, Jr., Hawaii
Jamie Houston, Jr., Hawaii
Haley Larsen, Jr., Idaho
Amanda Nielson, Sr., Utah State
Kim Oguh, Sr., New Mexico State
Shannon Phillips, Sr., Louisiana Tech
Juliana Sanders, Sr., Hawaii
Jennifer Senftleben, Sr., San Jose State
Amber Simpson, Jr., New Mexico State