Saint Leo, Fla. (August 8, 2008) – The Saint Leo University volleyball team was selected fourth in the 2008 Sunshine State Conference Pre-Season Poll; it was announced Wednesday by Conference Commissioner Michael J. Marcil. Florida Southern has been chosen as the preseason favorite to win the 2008 Sunshine State Conference volleyball title.

The Lions finished the 2007 campaign with a 24-14 record, going 6-10 in conference for a sixth place finish. The 24 victories smashed the previous school record of 21 set during the 2006 season. Head coach Sam Cibrone enters his fifth season as the Lions’ leader and returns all but one player to the squad. The Lions added three new faces to the team this year, which includes three true freshmen.

Saint Leo will open its 2008 season on the road at the Bob Martinez Sports Center on the campus of the University of Tampa, as they participate in the Florida Southern College/University of Tampa/Saint Leo Tournament. The Lions open against the University of Central Oklahoma and Ashland University on Friday, August 29 (11:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m.). The tournament continues Saturday, August 30, as the Lions open home action against St. Thomas University at 10:00 a.m.and Northwood University at 7:00 p.m. The Lions open up SSC play on the road at Eckerd College Wednesday, September 17 at 7:00 p.m.

Collecting 46 points and four first-place nods, Nova Southeastern was selected to place third in the 2008 conference standings. Saint Leo was tabbed fourth, receiving 57 points and one first-place vote. Eckerd appeared in the fifth slot in the poll, receiving 70 points, while Lynn was sixth with 74 points.

Barry (103), Florida Tech (114), and Rollins (119) rounded out the preseason poll.

Voting for the volleyball preseason poll was conducted among the league’s head volleyball coaches and sports information directors.

Place - Team, Points (1st Place Votes)
1 - Florida Southern, 31 (6)
2 - Tampa, 34 (7)
3 - Nova Southeastern, 46 (4)
4 - Saint Leo, 57 (1)
5 - Eckerd, 70
6 - Lynn, 74
7 - Barry, 103
8 - Florida Tech, 114
9 - Rollins, 119