Rainbow Wahine volleyball picked as preseason favorite in Big West Conference

Sports

Brooke Van Sickle // Hawaii Athletics

The University of Hawai’i women’s volleyball team, coming off a Big West championship in 2019, was picked to finish first by the conference head coaches. The Rainbow Wahine were picked to finish second in 2019 before winning the league with a 14-2 conference record.

Hawai’i received seven of the 11 Big West head coaches first place votes, tallying 117 total points. Cal Poly, the 2019 runner-up, received the other four first place votes and totaled 111 points. 

The ‘Bows return three All-Big West honorees from 2019 in first team selections Amber Igiede and Skyler Williams and honorable mention selection Brooke Van Sickle.

The trio tallied 599 kills in 2019, 39.5 percent of the team’s total offense in their title winning season. But the three posted 274 of the team’s 293 blocks in 2019, 93.5 percent.

Hawai’i got taller with their recruiting class as well. Three Rainbow Wahine freshman are listed at 6-3 or taller, with a freshman measuring up to 6-5.

The Rainbow Wahine will compete in two non-conference tournaments, including going to the mainland for a non-conference tournament for the second season in a row. Hawai’i will also host USC for the first time since 2010, a two-match series in SimpliFi Arena at Stan Sheriff Center. The Trojans and Rainbow Wahine last met in 2016 NCAA Tournament in Minneapolis, Minn.

After being one of 23 D-I schools to not compete in 2020, Hawai’i opens its season on Aug. 27 against Fairfield at 7 p.m. HT in the Hawaiian Airlines Rainbow Wahine Classic.

2021 BIG WEST WOMEN’S VOLLEYBALL PRESEASON COACHES POLL 

RankSchool (1st place votes)Points
1Hawai’i (7)117
2Cal Poly (4)111
3UC Santa Barbara90
4Long Beach State88
5UC Davis83
6UC Irvine57
7CSUN50
UC San Diego50
9CSU Bakersfield35
10Cal State Fullerton25
11UC Riverside20

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