Aug. 28, 2002
Head coach Bond Shymansky makes his debut at the helm of the Georgia Tech volleyball program as the Yellow Jackets open their season this weekend at the George Mason Tournament in Fairfax, Va. The Yellow Jackets will face tough competition with matches against nationally ranked Northern Iowa (1-1), 2001 Colonial Athletic Association regular-season champion George Mason, Villanova, and Rice.
On Friday, Tech will face the Wildcats at 11 a.m., followed by a 5 p.m. matchup with the Owls. The Jackets will then face No. 14 Northern Iowa at 2 p.m. and then host George Mason at 8 p.m. in their final match of the tournament on Saturday. Both of Saturday’s matches can be heard on WREK radio at 91.1 FM and in streaming audio over the internet at www.wrek.org.
“This weekend will be exciting for us,” said Shymansky, named head coach after two years as a Tech assistant. “First, it’s the start of the season and it will be fun to see what our team will do against new competition. Secondly, the opportunity to play a nationally ranked team like Northern Iowa and strong teams like Rice and George Mason will be a good challenge for our team and gives us a chance to earn the national respect that we are striving to achieve.”
Tech returns eight letterwinners to its lineup, including all-Atlantic Coast Conference performers Kele Eveland (Grand Rapids, Mich.), who finished third in the conference in assists per game (12.17), Lynnette Moster (Liberty, Ind.), who was fourth in the ACC in service aces per game (.45), and Lauren Sauer (Huntsville, Ala.), the 2001 ACC Rookie of the Year. In addition, middle blocker Alexandra Preiss (Berlin, Germany), who led the Jackets last year in hitting percentage (.323), and liberos Keight Vincent (Atlanta, Ga.) and Marisa Aston (Huntington Beach, Calif.) also return to the team. The new faces to this year’s lineup include sophomores Jayme Gergen (Topeka, Kansas), Laura Kuhn (Tiffin, Ohio) along with freshmen Jennifer Randall (Long Beach, Calif.) and Blair Moon (Missouri City, Texas).
“We’ve got a great opportunity in this tournament,” said Shymansky. “We are going to quickly see where we are after preseason and what kind of team we have the possibility of being and also the chance to play some really good teams.”
The Jackets are coming off of a successful 2001 season in which they compiled a 19-8 record and earned a birth in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.