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    SEC Volleyball Preview: Mississippi State

    Mississippi State is poised for a climb up the SEC ladder in 2010 when an experience-laden 2010 Bulldog volleyball team takes the court this fall. Second-year MSU head coach Jenny Hazelwood returns all but two starters and three other battle-tested letter-winners from last year’s 9-22 edition.

    Leading the way among the returnees is a pair of senior standouts --- middle blocker Ashley Newsome, who led MSU with 319 kills and 119 total blocks in 2009, and senior defensive specialist Kayla Woodard, who tallied 474 digs and averaged 4.35 digs per set, fifth-best in the SEC. Junior outside hitters Caitlin Rance and Faith Steinwedell are positioned to again be major role-players for the Volleyball Bulldogs after combining for almost a third of the team’s kills last fall.

    Replacing departed two-year starting setter Dorey Gray will be a high priority for Hazelwood, one of the league’s premier setters during her collegiate career at State. Sophomore Hillary Parker and rookie Paris Perret, one of six talented newcomers from a recruiting class that was ranked among the nation’s best by PrepVolleyball.com, are considered top candidates to direct MSU’s offense.