ATLANTA, Ga. - The 2019 CCSA Beach Volleyball season is around the corner, and the league's head coaches voted LSU's Kristen Nuss as the league's Preseason Player of the Year, the league office announced on Wednesday. She was joined by ten other student-athletes on the CCSA Beach Volleyball Preseason All-Conference squad.
Nuss not only was voted Preseason Player of the Year, but she was also the only unanimous member of the Preseason All-Conference Team. Last season, Nuss compiled a 31-8 record, earning CCSA Player of the Year and CCSA All-Conference honors. Through her first two seasons in Baton Rouge, Nuss has amassed 58 wins. She is joined on the Preseason All-Conference squad by her partner, Claire Coppola. Nuss and Coppola had a fantastic season in 2018, as they became the first LSU pair to be named the CCSA Pair of the Year. They were also named AVCA All-Americans and were the first pair of Tigers to earn AVCA Pair of the Week honors.
Reigning CCSA Champion, Florida State placed a conference-high four players on the Preseason All-Conference Team, as Brooke Kuhlman, Molly McBain, Macy Jerger and Sara Putt all claimed spots. Kulhman earned 25 wins in 2018 and spent a majority of the season paired with McBain. The pair of Kuhlman and McBain went 15-3 and ended the season going 13-1. Together, they went 2-1 at the NCAA Championships and captured the program's first-ever victory over UCLA.
Putt went 32-12 in 2018 and garnered CCSA All-Tournament Team recognition after going 6-0 at the tournament. Her 32 wins sit 10th all-time on the FSU single-season record list, while 19 of them came against ranked opponents. While paired with Jerger, the duo went undefeated through the regular season and CCSA Tournament, winning 19 matches in a row. Jerger finished the season 32-10 and was named CCSA Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
Fellow Sunshine State school, FIU landed two players on the CCSA Preseason All-Conference team in Margherita Bianchin and Federica Frasca. The Italian pair is coming off a decorated 2018 campaign, where they garnered CCSA All-Tournament Team and AVCA All-American recognition. Together, they put together a record of 27-8 and were just one of six pairs nation that posted 25 wins or more. Bianchin and Frasca also finished the season winning 20 of 27 matches and ranked 10th nationally among No. 1 pairs.
Tulane's Kaylie McHugh gains Preseason All-Conference accolades. McHugh was one of the top players in the CCSA last season, as she garnered CCSA All-Conference, CCSA All-Tournament and AVCA All-American honors. She posted a 30-7 record at the No. 1 spot for the Green Wave, which tied a program record for wins. 11 of her wins came against ranked teams such as No. 8 Cal Poly, No. 9 Georgia State, No. 8 LSU, No. 9 South Carolina and No. 10 FIU.
Georgia State is represented by Brooke Weiner on the Preseason All-Conference squad. Weiner went 26-10 last season for the Panthers with all 26 wins coming out of the No. 2 spot. Against CCSA competition, she went 11-6. Weiner earned CCSA All-Tournament Team after going 3-1 at the tournament in 2018.
Katie Smith is the lone South Carolina representative on the 2019 CCSA Preseason All-Conference Team. Last season, Smith compiled a record of 25-10 and her 25 wins were fourth most in single-season program history. She captured signature wins over No. 11 Grand Canyon, No. 10 Georgia State, No. 7 LSU and No. 3 Hawaii. Through two seasons in Columbia, Smith has racked up 47 victories, which sits seventh all-time in Gamecock history.
The 2019 season begins this week as several teams are in action to open the campaign.
2019 CCSA Beach Volleyball Watch List
- Kennedy Madison, College of Charleston
- Amanda Silva, FAU
- Abby Hughes, FIU
- Kate Privett, Florida State
- Maddy Delmonte, Georgia State
- Taryn Kloth, LSU
- Molly Scheel, TCU
- Tarin Mergener, Tulane
- Carly Schneider, South Carolina
- Kylie Grandy, Southern Miss
- Kenley Adams, UAB
- Maddy Kline, UNC Wilmington