EMMA RIDLEY NAMED TO SOUTHLAND CONFERENCE PRESEASON TEAM

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi senior outside hitter Emma Ridley was named preseason First-Team All-Southland Conference when the league released its preseason All-Southland teams and polls on Wednesday afternoon. The top outside hitter in the conference, Ridley was an automatic selection after being named First-Team All-Southland and Newcomer of the Year last season.

Ridley led the entire conference with 464 kills last year and hopes to continue putting up big numbers during her senior season with the Islanders. She will be looked to as a leader this season as one of five returnees on the 15-player roster that includes one junior college transfer and nine true freshmen.

"We know with Emma that we are going to get a lot of offense and someone who can take over the match when we need someone to do that," said head coach Tony Graystone. "When our team gets into trouble, she will be the first one we look at to bail us out.

"It's a real comfort to us, especially being so young, to have a senior outside hitter who can handle that much responsibility and play at a high level."

The Islanders as a team were picked to finish last in the West Division by both the coaches and sports information directors. They received 50 points in the coaches voting while defending tournament champion Texas State was picked first with 118 points while regular season champion Central Arkansas tallied 111 points to lead the East Division. In the SID poll, UCA was picked to win the league with 115 points while the Bobcats were picked second at 112 while the Islanders received just 35 points.

"It's way too early to even think about that (the conference polls)," said Graystone. "Our goal is to get into the conference tournament with the best seed that we can and then go from there.

"Until we even get to conference play, we aren't thinking about the Southland teams just yet."

First Team

Name

University

Class

Pos.

Hometown

Chloe Smith

Central Arkansas

Sr.

MB

San Diego, Calif.

Amber Calhoun

Texas State

Jr.

MB

Houston, Texas

Carli Kolbe

Sam Houston State

Jr.

OH

College Station, Texas

Emma Ridley

A&M-Corpus Christi

Sr.

OH

Phoenix, Ariz.

Kaylee Hawkins

Sam Houston State

So.

L

Dickinson, Texas

Tara Frantz

UT Arlington

Jr.

OH

Santa Fe, Texas

Cristin Curl

Central Arkansas

Jr.

L

Amarillo, Texas

MC Bottles

Stephen F. Austin

Jr.

MB

Rowlett, Texas

Wendy Krell

Lamar

So.

MB

Plano, Texas

Mo Middleton

Texas State

Sr.

OH

Glendale, Ariz.

Emily Shearin

UT Arlington

Jr.

MB

Dallas, Texas

Whitney Walls

UTSA

So.

OH

Arlington, Texas

Second Team

Name

University

Class

Pos.

Hometown

AJ Watlington

Texas State

Jr.

RS

Aledo, Texas

Jessica Hays

Central Arkansas

Jr.

OH

Friendswood, Texas

Melinda Cave

Texas State

Jr.

MB

Placentia, Calif.

Bianca Sauls

UT Arlington

Sr.

OH

Pflugerville, Texas

Kelsey Owens

Stephen F. Austin

Sr.

OH

The Colony, Texas

Kendra Rowland

UTSA

Sr.

OH

Antioch, Calif.

Coaches Poll

West Division

East Division

1. Texas State (9)

118

1. Central Arkansas (3)

111

2. Stephen F. Austin

99

2. Lamar

83

3. Sam Houston State

78

3. McNeese State

46

T4. UT Arlington

70

4. Northwestern State

25

T4. UTSA

70

5. Nicholls

22

6. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

50

6. Southeastern Louisiana

20

SID Poll

West Division

East Division

1. Texas State (4)

112

1. Central Arkansas (6)

115

2. Stephen F. Austin (2)

105

2. Lamar

77

3. UT Arlington

83

3. McNeese State

49

4. Sam Houston State

74

4. Nicholls

28

5. UTSA

66

T5. Northwestern State

24

6. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

35

T5. Southeastern Louisiana

24