Canisius College volleyball middle hitter Leigh Launhardt (Rochester, N.Y.) has been named to the preseason All-Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Team in a poll voted on by the league’s 10 head coaches, it was announced today. The Golden Griffins are picked to finish fifth, six points away from fourth-place Iona.
Launhardt (pictured right, photo by Tom Wolf) earned first-team All-MAAC honors last season after hitting .284, which ranked seventh in the league. She also ranked second in the conference in blocks with 1.09 a game.
Fairfield is picked to finish first in the poll, while Saint Peter’s, Manhattan and Iona round out the top four. Canisius placed fifth in the league last season with a 5-4 conference mark and a 16-13 overall record. It was the first winning season for the Golden Griffins since 1997 and the second in program history.
The Blue and Gold returns four starters and eight letterwinners from last season, including the 2003 Rookie of the Year, Mary Boller (Clarence, N.Y.). Canisius opens the season with a home match against Texas Arlington at 7 p.m. Sept. 3, in the Western New York Tournament.