Shocker Volleyball Picked 7th in American Preseason Poll

Courtesy of Wichita State University /
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Courtesy of Wichita State Athletics

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Wichita State University volleyball team was picked to finish seventh in the American Athletic Conference Preseason Poll, it was announced Thursday, Aug. 22, by the conference office.

The Shockers tallied 65 points in the poll.

Defending American Champion UCF was picked as the favorite with 118 points and eight first-place votes, while Cincinnati was second with 114 points and four first-place votes. Tulane rounded out the top-three in third, compiling 99 points.

Tulsa (81 points), SMU (77 points) and USF (66 points) went 4-5-6 in the poll, with the Shockers seventh and Temple (44 points) eighth.

ECU (39 points), Houston (34 points), UConn (32 points) and Memphis (23 points) rounded out the poll.

Cincinnati outside hitter and reigning American Player of the Year Jordan Thompson was voted the conference’s unanimous Preseason Player of the Year for 2019.

Wichita State is scheduled to open the regular season with three matches in the Penn State Classic Aug. 30-31 in University Park, Pa.

2019 American Volleyball Preseason Poll

Team First Place Votes Points
1. UCF 8 118
2. Cincinnati 4 114
3. Tulane 99
4. Tulsa 81
5. SMU 77
6. USF 66
7. Wichita State   65
8. Temple 44
9. ECU 39
10. Houston 34
11. UConn 32
12. Memphis 23

Preseason Player of the Year
Jordan Thompson, Cincinnati*

Preseason All-Conference Team 
McKenna Melville,  UCF*
Kristina Fisher, UCF
Anne-Marie Watson, UCF
Jordan Thompson, Cincinnati*
Maria Mallon, Cincinnati
Caylee Parker, UConn
Shelby Martin, ECU
Hannah Flowers, Memphis
Jac’cara Walker, USF
Hannah Jacobs, SMU
Montana Watts, SMU
Lexie Douglas, Tulane
Erika Hansel, Tulane*
Taylor Horsfall, Tulsa

*denotes unanimous selection

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Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.