AUGUSTA, Ga. – The Jaguars were predicted to finish 10th in the Peach Belt Conference after a poll of the league's head coaches was released Wednesday morning.
The Jaguars were picked 10th amongst the field, but return a nucleus of upperclassmen in seniors Maggie Darling and Kristen Koch and juniors Kailla Baptiste and Katie Beresford. After already acquiring freshmen Autumn Harrington and Sadie Thurston in the early signing period in December, the Jaguars added three more in freshmen Kali Boatwright (Lakeland, Fla.) and Paige Elliott (Roswell, Ga.) and junior-transfer Alyssa Latham (Punta Gorda, Fla.) to the roster.
"Having coached in the conference for five years now, we know what it takes and the type of athlete needed to get the job done to be in the top tier of the conference," head coach Sharon Bonaventure said. "With a core group of four starters returning with a renewed sense of urgency and a recruiting class of five players; two setters, a middle, right side and an outside/DS, I believe we have addressed the areas of the game and the holes in our lineup with these newbies that are athletic and eager to be impact players right from the start. The seed we are sitting in at the conference tournament in November is what matters when we prepare our athletes."
Armstrong was picked first in the poll after going 18-0 in the PBC last season, while Flagler sits 12 votes back for the second spot. Francis Marion and USC Aiken were tied for third with 54 votes and Columbus State and Montevallo tied for fifth with 53. Lander, UNC Pembroke, Georgia College and the Jaguars concluded the list. Teams were given nine points for a first-place vote, eight for a second and so on. Coaches were not permitted to rank their own teams.
The 2014 season begins on Sept. 5 with conference play beginning in earnest on Sept. 18. The 2014 PBC Tournament format has changed. The top eight teams once again advance to tournament play with the quarterfinals being hosted on campus by the four higher seeds on Tuesday, Nov. 11. The top remaining seed following the quarterfinals will host the final four on Friday, Nov. 14 with the championship on Nov. 15.
To view the Peach belt's full release click here