V-Hawks are coaches’ favorite to win NSAA Volleyball title for sixth straight yea

MADISON, S.D. (PlayNorthStar.com) – Viterbo (Wis.) is the coaches’ unanimous favorite to win the 2020 North Star Athletic Association (NSAA) volleyball conference title. The conference office released its volleyball coaches’ preseason poll Thursday. It is the sixth straight year that the V-Hawks are picked to win the league title.

VU tallied eight first-place votes and collected 64 points to claim No. 1 spot in the conference preseason poll. Viterbo completed their 2019 season with an overall record of 35-7 and 13-1 record in league play. The V-Hawks won the NSAA regular-season and post-season titles. Viterbo advanced to the NAIA national tournament’s semifinals, falling to Westmont (Calif.) in three straight sets.

The V-Hawks finished with a No. 3 ranking in the final NAIA Volleyball Coaches’ Top 25 national poll.

Bellevue (Neb.) claimed the second place in the NSAA volleyball coaches’ poll, recording 56 points. The Bruins were ranked No. 19 in the final NAIA Volleyball Coaches’ Top 25 national poll and advanced to the national tournament’s final site last season. BU was 28-10 overall record and 10-4 NSAA conference record in 2019.

Dakota State (S.D.) was picked to finish third in the preseason poll with 46 points. The Trojans advanced to the NSAA postseason conference tournament’s championship match last season. Dakota State also qualified for the NAIA Volleyball National Tournament Opening Round for the first time in school history, finishing 19-13 overall record and 10-4 NSAA conference record.

Mayville State (N.D.) was collected 42 points to place fourth in the poll, followed by Presentation (S.D.) fifth with 27 points. Waldorf (Iowa) was picked to finish sixth after tallying 23 points. Dickinson State (N.D.) placed seventh with 18 points and Valley City State (N.D.) eighth with 12 points.

All NSAA members will be playing a 14-match schedule (7 matches at home and 7 matches on the road). The conference season officially kicks off Tuesday, Sept. 15 with Presentation visiting Mayville State. The rest of the NSAA’s opening-season matches are on Wednesday, Sept. 16 with WU at VU, DiSU at VCSU and BU at DaSU on schedule.

The top six teams will qualify for the North Star conference postseason tournament on Nov. 13-14. The postseason tournament is scheduled to take place at the Civic Arena in Watertown, S.D.

The NSAA postseason tournament’s champion will receive an automatic bid to the NAIA Volleyball National Tournament.

Due to COVID-19 pandemic, the NAIA Volleyball National Tournament has been moved to the spring season. The national tournament will be held at the Tyson Events Center in Sioux City, Iowa from April 27 through May 1.