BIRMINGHAM, Ala.- The Southwestern Athletic Conference released its 2021 Preseason All-SWAC Volleyball teams as voted upon by the league’s head coaches and sports information directors on Wednesday.
Arkansas-Pine Bluff’s Zyonn Smith was named Preseason Player of the Year, while fellow teammate Haley Gomez claimed Preseason Blocker of the Year recognition. Grambling State’s Jada Taylor was tabbed Preseason Libero/Defensive Player of the Year.
UAPB’s Smith led the SWAC with 167 kills in 45 sets, registering a total of 180 points during the spring season. The Lady Lions’ Gomez played in 45 sets and tallied 61 blocks (33 solo, 28 assisted) this past season, while Grambling State’s Taylor racked up 201 digs in 39 sets played.
Jackson State led all member institutions with five (5) total preseason selections followed by Arkansas-Pine Bluff (3), Grambling State (2), Southern (2), Texas Southern (2), Prairie View A&M (2), Alcorn State (1), and Bethune-Cookman (1).
The Southwestern Athletic Conference will announce the 2021 SWAC Volleyball Predicted Order of Finish on Thursday, August 19.
A complete listing of the 2021 Preseason All-SWAC Teams and individual award winners can be found below.
Preseason Player of the Year
Zyonn Smith- Arkansas-Pine Bluff
Preseason Blocker of the Year
Haley Gomez- Arkansas-Pine Bluff
Preseason Libero/Defensive Player of the Year
Jada Taylor- Grambling State
Preseason All-SWAC First Team
Outside/Right Side Hitter: Alexis Williams- Jackson State
Outside/Right Side Hitter: Jada Carter- Southern
Outside/Right Side Hitter: Jylen Whitten- Jackson State
Outside/Right Side Hitter: Zyonn Smith- Arkansas-Pine Bluff
Middle Hitter/Blocker: Haley Gomez- Arkansas-Pine Bluff
Middle Hitter/Blocker: Marina Bianchi Brito- Jackson State
Setter: Damassy Thompson- Jackson State
Setter: Nikole Akamine- Arkansas-Pine Bluff
Libero/Defensive Specialist: Jada Taylor- Grambling State
Preseason All-SWAC Second Team
Outside/Right Side Hitter: Gillian Jones- Grambling State
Outside/Right Side Hitter: Mikenzie Young-Mullins- Alcorn State
Outside/Right Side Hitter: Jordan Jones- Jackson State
Outside/Right Side Hitter: Danielle Lilley- Texas Southern
Middle Hitter/Blocker: Delaine Fulton- Southern
Middle Hitter/Blocker: Alleah Dallas- Bethune-Cookman
Setter: Jakarta Hope- Prairie View A&M
Setter: Aeris Ramsey- Texas Southern
Libero/Defensive Specialist: Skyla Childs- Prairie View A&M