DURHAM, N.C. – After a run to the NCAA Regional Final and an ACC Championship, the Duke volleyball team landed the No. 18 rank in the final AVCA Division I Coaches Poll, as announced by the American Volleyball Coaches Association on Tuesday.
The Blue Devils (27-7, 16-4 ACC) won their third ACC Championship in the past five years before embarking on the best NCAA Championship run in program history. The Blue Devils defeated High Point 3-0 and Ohio 3-2 in the opening rounds of the 64-team national tournament and took down Missouri 3-1 to reach the NCAA Regional Final in University Park, Pa.
Only the third team in ACC history to reach the Regional Final and the fourth to reach the Round of Eight, Duke fell to eventual NCAA Champion Penn State, but not before becoming the only team in the entire tournament to win a set against the Nittany Lions. Penn State, which won its fourth consecutive NCAA Championship after sweeping both opponents at the National Semifinals and Finals, took down Duke 3-1 on its home court to end the Blue Devils’ season.
Duke was last ranked in the AVCA Coaches Poll on November 26, 2007, at No. 22 during a season that saw the Blue Devils reach as high as No. 13. Duke has received votes in the poll for the entire 2010 season and cracked it for the first time on Tuesday.