Courtesy: Nelson Chenault
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Begic Named SBC Preseason Player of the Year; Volleyball Tabbed to Finish Second
UALR Sports Information
Release: 08/26/2013

NEW ORLEANS – On the heels of capturing the 2012 Sun Belt Conference Player of the Year honor, junior Edina Begic was named the 2013 Preseason Player of the Year in a vote of the conference head coaches released Monday (Aug. 26).

“It’s an honor to have the support of the coaches of the other teams in the Sun Belt for Edina,” 26th-year head coach Van Compton said. “Through her play the last two seasons, she has earned this honor. We will have to continue our solid play so hopefully she wins another Player of the Year award.”

As a team, UALR is picked to finish in a tie for second with Troy. Western Kentucky is picked to win its third straight conference regular-season crown.

“I am not surprised we were picked second in the conference,” Compton said. “After Western Kentucky, there is just a mix of teams with us, Troy, Arkansas State and Texas State that will have to play itself out.”

Last season, UALR raced out to a 5-0 record in SBC matches, its best start since 2008. The Trojans won all six of their conference matches that went to the fifth set, finishing with a 9-5 SBC record overall to win its second division title.

Becoming just the second player in conference history to win Freshman and Player of the Year honors in consecutive years, Begic finished the 2012 regular season as the national leader in both kills per set and points per set. She also led the conference with 37 aces for the season.

For her career, Begic is just nine kills away from becoming the ninth Trojan in program history to reach the 1,000-kill plateau. With 4.50 kills per set, she joins Tanja Radovic (4.11 k/s, 1997-2000) as the only UALR volleyball player to average more than four kills per set.

UALR volleyball kicks off the 2013 season this weekend (Aug. 30-31) when it travels to Starkville, Miss. for three matches in the Maroon Classic. The Trojans take on Southeast Missouri State (4 p.m.) and Mississippi State (7 p.m.) before concluding the weekend Saturday against Mississippi Saturday at 1 p.m.

2013 SBC Volleyball Preseason Poll (First Place Votes)

1.      Western Kentucky (10) – 100 points

2.      UALR – 77 points

Troy – 77 points

4.      Arkansas State – 64 points

Texas State – 64 points

6.      UT Arlington – 47 points

7.      Louisiana – 46 points

8.      South Alabama – 39 points

9.      Georgia State – 24 points

10.   ULM – 13 points


2013 SBC Preseason Offensive Player of the Year
Edina Begic (UALR, Junior, OH)

2013 SBC Preseason Defensive Player of the Year
Ashley Potts (WKU, Senior, DS)

2013 SBC Preseason Setter Player of the Year
Melanie Stutsman (WKU, Senior, S)


2013 SBC Preseason All-Conference Team

Edina Begic (UALR, Junior, OH)

Amari Deardorff (Texas State, Senior, RS)

Alexandra Alexander (Troy, Senior, S)

Blair Winston (Troy, Sophomore, OH)

Heather Boyan (WKU, Junior, MH)

Ashley Potts (WKU, Senior, DS)

Melanie Stutsman (WKU, Senior, S)

Paige Wessel (WKU, RS-Senior, OH)

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