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Illinois adds Bruna Vrankovic, two others for 2019 season

Vrankovic is a former professional volleyball player in Europe.

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Illinois officially added three players to its roster for the 2019 season on Tuesday afternoon, including former professional volleyball Bruna Vrankovic.

Vrankovic is an outside hitter from Croatia who had her eligibility denied last year because of her professional background. According to The News-Gazette, Vrankovic is serving a nearly two-year FIVB doping suspension through July 3, 2019.

Illinois also officially added Alyssa Eske and Madison Chi, per the team’s Twitter account. Both Eske and Chi are liberos/defensive specialists.

With her experience, Vrankovic will likely make an immediate impact on the court for the Illini. Eske and Chi will serve as two valuable additions to an already deep roster of defensive specialists, led by libero Morgan O’Brien and defensive specialists Taylor Kuper and Caroline Welsh.

After an incredible season last year, Illinois is poised to make another deep run, having filled the gaps left by graduating seniors Jordyn Poulter and Ali Bastianelli. Illinois was ranked as having the 15th best recruiting class for 2019 by Prep Volleyball, which did not take the transfer of Mica Allison or the addition of Vrankovic into account.

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