Defending LSC, Regional Champion Texans tabbed preseason favorites; Darthuy named preseason top offensive player


STEPHENVILLE – Tarleton Volleyball has been picked to win its third straight Lone Star Conference championship after the league announced its annual preseason rankings on Monday.

Senior outside hitter Adriana Darthuy was also picked as the preseason Offensive Player of the Year. The AVCA All-American from Marseille, France led the Texans with 370 kills last season.

The Texans were the clear favorites in the preseason poll, collecting 39 of the 45 first-place votes in the poll for 802 total points. The LSC preseason poll is voted on by conference head coaches, sports information directors and media members.

Texas A&M-Commerce (755 votes) is picked second, followed by Angelo State (717) in third. TAMUC and ASU each received two first-place votes. West Texas A&M (628) and Arkansas-Fort Smith (586) round out the top five in the poll.

“To be picked atop the Lone Star Conference and receive the votes that we did is rewarding, especially with how tough our league is year in and year out,” said five-time coach of the year, Mary Schindler. “I’m excited for Adriana to receive the honor that she did and build off the All-American season she had last year. Last year was a great run and I’m looking forward to seeing what this talented group can accomplish this season.”

Tarleton is coming off its best season in program history after finishing No. 9 in the country by the AVCA. The Texans went 32-5 overall — a school record for wins in a season — and 19-1 in the LSC to claim their third conference championship in the last four seasons. Tarleton went on to claim the No. 1 seed and host the NCAA regional for the first time en route to winning the first South Central Regional Championship in school history. The Texans return seven players who played over 100 sets – including three all-conference players – in Darthuy, Kayla Brannon, Lauren Kersey, Amber Strange, Michaela Rodriguez, Sofia Tonga, and Tatyana Tuialii-Umi.

The Texans will open the season on the road at the Hyatt Place Bash at the Beach in West Palm Beach, Florida from Sept. 6-7. Tarleton’s home opener will take place on Friday, Sept. 20 against St. Edward’s.

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