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Virginia field hockey team picked second in ACC preseason poll; volleyball team projected to finish 13th

Virginia field hockey team picked second in ACC preseason poll; volleyball team projected to finish 13th


Virginia’s Amber Ezechiels (left) controls the ball against Delaware during the first round of the 2019 NCAA Tournament at the UVa Turf Field.

The preseason predicted order of finish for the ACC’s fall sports wrapped up Wednesday with the release of the conference’s field hockey and volleyball polls.

The Virginia field hockey team was tabbed by coaches to finish second in the seven-team ACC this fall, while the Cavaliers’ volleyball program was picked to finish 13th out of 15 ACC programs.

Fresh off an NCAA semifinal appearance, the UVa field hockey team enters 2020 with a talented roster. The Cavaliers led all ACC programs with three selections on the 2020 preseason All-ACC team.

Senior Rachel Robinson, junior Amber Ezechiels and junior Lauren Hausheer all earned the honors.

Robinson was a first team All-American last season after starting 23 games as a defensive midfielder. Ezechiels earned second team All-American honors last season, performing exceptionally well on the defensive side.

Hausheer, a goalkeeper, took advantage of UVa’s stellar defense last season. When the ball did come into her vicinity, she rarely allowed it into the goal. She recorded seven shutouts last season and led the ACC in goals-against average.

Despite Virginia’s talented squad, North Carolina was picked to win the league. The Tar Heels received six of the seven first-place votes.

The volleyball program didn’t find the same success in the preseason poll. ACC coaches picked the Wahoos to finish 13th out of 15 teams, and no Cavaliers made the preseason All-ACC team.

Pittsburgh received 11 of the 15 first-place votes and is predicted to win the conference for the fourth consecutive year.

UVa hopes to surpass its preseason expectations this fall.

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