NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - Coming off a record-setting 2013 season that included the school's first-ever Big West Championship, CSUN was tabbed to finish fourth in the conference race heading into the 2014 season.
The Matadors, 24-7 overall (13-3 Big West) last season, received 60 points (one first-place vote) from the conference coaches as the top-four teams in the poll are separated by just 17 points.
Hawai'i, which shared the 2013 regular season championship with CSUN and UC Santa Barbara, were picked as the conference favorite in 2014 with five first-place votes and 77 points overall. Long Beach State was tabbed second with one first-place vote and 68 points followed by UCSB (63 points, 2 first-place votes) and the Matadors.
UC Irvine (42 pts.) was picked fifth followed by Cal Poly (34), UC Davis (25), Cal State Fullerton (24) and UC Riverside (12).
CSUN returns five starters in 2014 including two-time AVCA All-American and three-time first team All-Big West middle Casey Hinger and two-time first team All-Big West opposite Natalie Allen. Despite the graduation of three key seniors from 2013, the Matadors will be long on experience this season as five seniors, four juniors, two sophomores and six freshman comprise the 2014 roster. In addition to Hinger and Allen, the Matadors return starters Cieana Stinson, Sam Kaul and Kelcie Randazzo.
"I'm happy with the dynamic and the makeup of this season's roster," said head Stork. "We have a lot of good players returning which gives us depth at every position. Every team can improve and that's our expectation coming into the season."