The Verndale volleyball team will begin the 2015 season considered one of the best in the state.
The Pirates just missed being ranked in the Class A Top 10 when the Minnesota Volleyball Coaches Association released its preseason poll on July 29.
Defending champion Bethlehem Academy of Faribault is ranked number one, followed by Tracy-Milroy-Balaton, Heritage Christian (Maple Grove), Mabel-Canton and Ada-Borup.
The rest of the top 10 is made up of Mayer Lutheran, Kittson County Central, Wabasha-Kellogg, Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa and Waterville-Elysian-Morristown.
Verndale, Wheaton/Herman-Norcross, Browerville and Hayfield all received top 10 votes.
Belle Plaine and Prior Lake are the top-ranked teams in Classes AA and AAA respectively.