C-USA Volleyball Awards Announced
Nov. 20, 2003
CHICAGO - Conference USA announced its 2003 volleyball awards winners prior to the start of the 2003 C-USA Tournament in New Orleans. Cincinnati claimed three individual honors, including Player of the Year, Setter of the Year and Freshman of the Year. Coach of the Year honors went to Santiago Restrepo of Southern Miss, while Tulane's Karlyn Daly earned Defensive Player of the Year accolades.
For the first time, Restrespo claimed Coach of the Year accolades after directing the Southern Miss Golden Eagles to a 27-5 record, the most wins in school history. USM, who finished the season with an 11-3 conference record, earned its highest berth ever in the C-USA Tournament with a No. 3 seed. Restrepo currently has a career record of 127-71 (.641) in three years at Southern Miss.
Cincinnati's Julie DuPont earned C-USA Player of the Year honors after leading the Bearcats to a share of the 2003 regular season title. DuPont currently leads the conference in kills with 5.56 per game (5.56 pg) and points (6.40) She has led UC in kills in all but four matches this season, including eight 20-plus kill performances.
Laura Lauder, who helped the Bearcats lead the conference in team assists (16.02 pg), was named C-USA Setter of the Year. For most of the season, Lauder led the nation in assists and she currently ranks third in the nation with 14.25 assists per game. She also stands in second place on C-USA's all-time assist list with a total of 5,760.
Tulane's Daly earned Conference USA Defensive Player of the Year laurels, after ranking second in the league with an average of 4.47 digs per game. She set Tulane's single-season record for digs with a total of 465, eclipsing the old mark of 464 set by Britney Hurst last season.
DuPont, Lauder and Daly were joined on the all-league first team by Louisville's Sonja Percan and Lena Ustymenko, USF's Shameka Mitchell, and Tulane's Deva Fowler.
The second team consists of Houston's Loure Dewes and Jaci Gonzalez, Marquette's Theresa Coughlin, Memphis' Brittany Barnett, Andrea Bush and Bridget Files of Southern Miss, and Tulane's Anastasia Kenon.
Earning third team All-Conference honors were Cincinnati's Lindsey Garrison and Rachel Torblaa, Louisville's Bing Sun, Memphis' Tiara Gilkey and Heather Watts, TCU's Dominika Szabo and UAB's Martina Shields.
Myanna Hellsten of Cincinnati was named the Freshman of the Year, after leading the UC squad and ranking third in the conference with 1.30 blocks per game. She currently is only 17 blocks away from breaking the C-USA freshman record for total blocks (UAB's Hailey Isham and Terri Steeb both posted 146 blocks in 1995.)
Hellsten was joined on the all-freshman squad by East Carolina's Jamie Bevan, Houston's Kelly McAnelly, Louisville's Anastasia Yartseva, TCU's Anna Vaughn and UAB's Bilun Gunal.
Cincinnati produced the most all-conference selections with four, while Louisville, Memphis and Tulane each earned three selections.
The four-day Conference USA Volleyball Tournament begins on Friday, Nov. 21 at Fogelman Arena in New Orleans. The championship game on Monday will be televised by the Conference USA Television Network. Don Russell will announce the play-by-play with Amy Prichard providing the commentary. College Sports Television, Comcast Charter Sports Southeast, New Orleans' Cox Sports Television, Charlotte Cable Television and WXIV-TV (Greensboro, N.C.) will carry the event live. Fox Sports Net Chicago and Fox Sports Net Florida will air the event tape delayed. Please check your local listings for times.
First Team All-C-USA Julie DuPont, OH, Cincinnati Laura Lauder, S, Cincinnati Sonja Percan, OH, Louisville Lena Ustymenko, OH/MB, Louisville Shameka Mitchell, MB, USF Deva Fowler, MB, Tulane Karlyn Daly, L, Tulane