The TWU volleyball team, coming off consecutive 20-win seasons, has been picked third in the Lone Star Conference preseason poll released Tuesday.
West Texas A&M, the defending LSC champion, is picked to repeat as champion. The Lady Buffs collected 21 of 23 first-place votes for a total of 205 points. Angelo State is picked second, with two first-place votes, and 184 points overall.
TWU, 23-8 in 2012 and 22-11 in 2013, collected 149 points to finish third in the preseason balloting. The Pioneers advanced to their 11th consecutive conference tournament last season and their third overall appearance in the NCAA tournament.
TWU returns seven letter winners from the 2013 team, led by Jacqueline Santos, Morgan Wilson and Mallory Kuechle. Wilson, a senior, was the team leader on defense for the past three season as the starting libero. Santos, also a senior, registered 188 kills and 88 blocks in her first season with the Pioneers last season. Kuechle, a sophomore, is the returning kills leader with 204 in the 2013 campaign.
TWU will open the season Sept. 5 at the BritKare Lady Buff Classic in Canyon.