Tigers Earn Preseason Beach All-Conference Honors

by Grant Kauvar
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Tigers Earn Preseason Beach All-Conference Honors

BATON ROUGE – Claire Coppola and Kristen Nuss, the defending CCSA Pair of the Year, each garnered Preseason All-Conference Honors the CCSA announced Wednesday with Nuss earning a unanimous selection along with Preseason Player of the Year. Nuss is the only player in the conference to earn a unanimous selection.

Taryn Kloth, a graduate transfer from Creighton was named to the CCSA Preseason Watch list. As a Blue Jay, Kloth excelled in her indoor career as she earned multiple All-America honors and was named the Big East Championship MVP in 2017 helping Creighton defeat Marquette, 3-2, for the crown.

Coppola and Nuss, both juniors, have been together as the Tiger’s pair on Court 1 for the past two seasons, earning 58 wins together. They have played every collegiate match as a pair.

In their inaugural season in the sand, Coppola and Nuss took the conference by storm, going 27-7 and being selected as one of five pairs to earn CCSA All-Conference accolades. In 2017, the LSU duo led the Tigers to their first appearance at the NCAA Championships and were named to the VolleyballMag.com All-America team.

Already a force to be reckoned with, Coppola and Nuss built upon their freshmen season, going 31-8 in 2018, and leading LSU back to Gulf Shores for a second-straight appearance at the NCAA Championships. They won the CCSA Pair of the Year last season and took home All-America honors from the American Volleyball Coaches Association and VolleyballMag.com, once again.

After leading the Tigers to a No. 6 finish in the polls for a second straight season, Coppola and Nuss took to the sand in Hermosa Beach, California for the USAV Collegiate Beach Championship. After advancing to the round of 16 in 2017, Coppola and Nuss went all the way in 2018, winning the entire tournament comprised of the top pairs from around the nation.

The win in Hermosa Beach earned Coppola and Nuss the opportunity to train with USA Volleyball throughout the Summer in 2018, ultimately donning the Red, White and Blue overseas in Germany for the FISU World University Games against the top collegiate competition around the globe.

The tournament began with 32 pairs from 29 countries and Coppola and Nuss finished fifth overall, closing out their 2018 season.

Coppola and Nuss lead the No. 7 ranked beach volleyball team into its 2019 campaign where the Tigers are looking to build off the success seen in the past two seasons. LSU returns 12 players, six of which were major contributors, including Coppola and Nuss, plus Olivia Powers, Hunter Domanski, Megan Davenport and Maddie Ligon. The Tigers also added a mix of 11 freshmen, graduate transfers and players from the LSU indoor team that will all look to make an impact in the sand.

The Tigers will kick off their season this weekend, February 23-24, at the Home2 Suites Hilton-Tallahassee State Capitol Invitational hosted by No. 3 Florida State. Along with the Seminoles, LSU will face three other ranked opponents in No. 6 Cal Poly, No. 18 Tulane and No. 9 South Carolina.

 

LSU will hold its first home match on March 15 at 7 p.m. against Coastal Carolina for the LSU Beach Volleyball Stadium Dual.