Nebraska volleyball senior co-captains Mikaela Foecke and Kenzie Maloney were named to the Preseason All-Big Ten Team on Tuesday. The Huskers were also voted first by the league’s head coaches in the preseason poll.
Foecke, a 6-3 outside hitter, was one of seven unanimous selections to the preseason team. An AVCA second-team All-American and All-Big Ten selection in 2017, Foecke guided the Huskers to their second national championship in three years last season with a team-high 3.53 kills per set. The West Point, Iowa native collected her second Most Outstanding Player award at the NCAA Championships after 20 kills and 14 digs in the championship match against Florida. She became just the fourth player in NCAA history to twice be named the NCAA Championship Most Outstanding Player and the first to earn the honor in non-consecutive years.
Maloney, a 5-8 libero from Louisville, Kentucky, led the Huskers in digs last year with 3.62 per set and served a school-record 13 aces during the NCAA Tournament on her way to all-tournament team honors. Maloney played two of her best matches of the season at the final four, producing 21 digs, six assists and four aces in the semifinal against Penn State and 15 digs, two kills and an ace in the final against Florida.
The Huskers, who have won back-to-back Big Ten titles, topped the preseason poll ahead of Wisconsin, Minnesota, Penn State and Illinois. Michigan came in at No. 6, followed by Purdue, Ohio State, Michigan State, Iowa, Northwestern, Indiana, Maryland and Rutgers.
The 2018 Huskers will set out to become the first squad in NU history to reach three straight final fours and will be hunting for a third straight conference championship for the first time since 2006-08 in the Big 12.
Nebraska hosts its annual Red/White Scrimmage on Saturday at 3 p.m. at the Bob Devaney Sports Center. It will air on Husker Sports Network radio affiliates, Huskers.com and the Huskers app.