[ By STEVE CARPENTER ]
[ HCC SPORTS INFORMATION ]
Photo courtesy of HCC Sports Information
HUTCHINSON, Kan. — For the fifth straight season, the Hutchinson Community College volleyball team is the preseason pick of league coaches to win the Jayhawk West championship.
The KJCCC’s Jayhawk West preseason coaches’ poll was released on Tuesday with the Blue Dragons picked to win the 2017 league championship. The Blue Dragons have won five straight conference championships after sharing the 2016 league title with Seward County.
Hutchinson, Seward County, Colby and Barton are picks one through four. Cloud County was picked fifth, followed by Butler, Dodge City, Pratt and Garden City.
The 2016 Blue Dragons went 25-12, shared a Jayhawk West title and advanced to the Region VI championship match.
Five players return from last season — outside hitter Page Hiebert, setter Katie Jorn, right-side hitter Nina Pevic, defensive specialist/libero Kelsey Mulligan and middle hitter Patricia Joseph.
Hiebert was an All-Jayhawk West/Region VI performer last season and was the 2016 Blue Dragons’ leading hitter
Hiebert averaged 2.71 kills per set and had a .273 hitting percentage. As part of a 6-2 offense last season, Jorn averaged 5.54 assists per set. Pevic averaged 1.75 kills per set and 1.75 kills per set. Mulligan averaged 2.71 digs per set. Jospeh averaged 0.96 kills and 0.85 blocks per set.
Currently in fall camp, the Blue Dragons open the 2017 season with four matches at the New Mexico Military Institute Classic on Aug. 25 and 26 in Roswell, New Mexico. The Blue Dragons open at home on Wednesday, Aug. 30, against Garden City at the Sports Arena.