CLEVELAND – Bowling Green State University junior right side hitter Danielle Tonyan has been named East Division Preseason All-MAC in voting by the league's 12 head coaches. Tonyan is coming off a season in which she was named first team All-MAC, the first BGSU player to earn that honor as a sophomore since Kendra Halm in 2006.
"This is a nice honor for Danielle and shows the respect that the league coaches have for her and what she brings to our team," first-year head coach Danijela Tomic said. "I hope this will motivate her even more to continue working hard, to improve every day, and to make her teammates better so that she is included on the list of the best players in the conference once the season is over."
Tonyan is primed for a big year with a veteran supporting cast around her. She ranked third in the MAC in kills a year ago, averaging 3.79 per set. Starting in all 31 matches, Tonyan also had 14 service aces and 56 blocks. She finished the year ranked in the top 100 in the country in both kills and points, posting double-digit kill totals in 15 of the final 16 matches of the year. She was twice named MAC East Division Offensive Player of the Week and was Most Valuable Player of the season-opening Navy Invitational.
Along with Tonyan, Ohio's Chelsea Bilger, Lexie Hartnett and Kelly Lamberti were named to the East Division Preseason All-MAC team. Buffalo's Liz Scott and Miami's Madison Hardy also earned those honors. The West Division Preseason All-MAC team consists of Western Michigan's Jessica Brown and Terin Norris, Ball State's Kara Bates, Central Michigan's Kaitlyn McIntyre, Eastern Michigan's Rachel Iaquaniello, and Northern Illinois' Mary Kurisch.
BGSU opens the season this weekend at the Marquette Challenge, facing Marquette Friday night at 7 p.m. (CST) and Northwestern Saturday at 4 p.m. (CST). The Falcons will play at home for the first time on Sept. 21 in the MAC opener against Ohio at 7 p.m.