FORT MYERS, Fla. - With the beginning of the season less than 48 hours away, FGCU Volleyball head coach Dave Nichols and the Eagles learned that they will be without three players this season. Senior Jelena Simic (Lazarevac, Serbia/Seward County CC), sophomore Julia Lopez (El Paso, Tex./Burges HS) and freshman Ashley Noble (Wall, N.J./Wall Township HS) will use the 2010 season as a redshirt year.
A unanimous Preseason Atlantic Sun All-Conference selection just last week, Simic will redshirt this season before beginning work on a master's degree. The Serbia native, who suffered a knee injury in the semifinals of the Atlantic Sun Championship in November 2009, will return for her fifth year of eligibility in 2011. A transfer from Seward County Community College after her sophomore season, Simic shined last season as she earned 2009 A-Sun All-Conference first team honors and 2009 A-Sun All-Tournament team accolades. The outside hitter started 29 matches for the Eagles, averaging 3.81 kills per set and 4.18 points per set, which ranked second and third in the conference, respectively.
Lopez, a 6-foot-1 outside hitter that appeared in nine matches in 2009, will take a medical redshirt this season and Nichols will also redshirt Noble, who is a 6-foot-3 middle blocker.
FGCU will kick-off the season by hosting the 2010 Homewood Suites Volleyball Invitational from August 27-28, where they will take on Bethune-Cookman, UCF, FAU, and Houston Baptist. Friday will feature five matches, beginning with Bethune-Cookman taking on the Eagles at 9 a.m.
Live stats for every match of the will be available at FGCUAthletics.com and FGCU’s four matches will be broadcast online at ASun.TV.
Tickets for the 2010 Homewood Suites Volleyball Invitational can be purchased through the FGCU Ticket Office in Alico Arena either in person or by phone at (239) 590-7145. Tickets are also available at www.FGCUathletics.com/tickets. All Tournament passes, valid for all games during the tournament, will be $10 for adults and $5 for youth (ages 3-18). Admission for FGCU faculty, staff, and students is free.