AMCC Pre-Season Polls released for fall sports

(Left to Right): Taylor McMillen, Melissa Smith

BRADFORD, Pa. – The Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference released its annual pre-season polls for women’s volleyball and men’s and women’s soccer, as announced by the league office on Monday.

The first of the polls to be released was women’s volleyball. Pitt-Bradford enters the 2014 season picked to finish third in the conference. The Panthers carried the No. 6 seed into the 2013 AMCC tournament before making a run all the way to championship match.

Senior Taylor McMillen was selected by the coaches as the AMCC Pre-Season Co-Player of the Year with Medaille’s Simmone Talford. As a junior, McMillen proved to be the anchor of the Panthers’ lineup. She started all 31 matches and tied for a team-high 123 sets played. She was named to the All-AMCC first team and finished third in the AMCC in hitting percentage (.282), second in kills (376) and seventh in blocks (73).

McMillen posted a team-high 389 kills and registered 40 assists and a team-high 42 aces. She tallied 126 digs and 75 total blocks (eight solo and 67 assists).

The second poll released was women’s soccer. The Panthers enter this season picked to finish second behind defending AMCC Champion Penn State Behrend. Last year, the Panthers put together a memorable season finishing with a 13-6-1 record overall and 8-2 in the conference with a second place finish.

Sophomore Melissa Smith was picked by the coaches as the AMCC Pre-Season Offensive Player of the Year. Smith exploded onto the scene as a freshman making 19 starts and appearing in all 20 games. She led the squad with 26 goals scored for the year and tallied five assists for a total of 57 points.

She was named the AMCC’s Offensive Player of the Year and Newcomer of the Year. Smith was also selected to the All-AMCC first team. She led the league in shots (80), points (57), points per game (2.85), goals (26) and goals per game (1.30). She tied teammate Maggie Boehler for the top spot in the conference for game-winning goals with six.

The final poll released was men’s soccer. The Panthers were tabbed by the coaches to finish ninth in the league. Pitt-Bradford hopes to use a rejuvenated roster full of newcomers, as well as returners, to put together a successful season in order to qualify for the AMCC tournament.