Huskers Headline All-Big Ten Volleyball Awards
Photo Credit: Eric Francis

Huskers Headline All-Big Ten Volleyball Awards

November 28, 2017

The Big Ten released its postseason awards for volleyball on Tuesday and eight members of co-champion Nebraska received recognition.

Coach John Cook was selected as the Big Ten Coach of the Year for the second straight season as voted on by the coaches. Penn State’s Russ Rose, who led the Nittany Lions to a share of the conference title along with Nebraska, was voted Coach of the Year by the media.

Nebraska went 26-4 this season and 19-1 in Big Ten play, and two of those losses were without All-American setter Kelly Hunter. Nebraska went 9-1 against top-25 competition this season with Hunter in the lineup.

Speaking of Hunter, the senior was named Big Ten Setter of the Year. She averaged 11 assists per set in Big Ten play, good for fifth in the conference. She also chipped in 2.67 digs per set to lead all setters in Big Ten play. Hunter missed Nebraska’s first two matches and was limited in a  few others while recovering from an offseason injury but bounced back to lead the Huskers to their second straight conference title. She received two Big Ten Setter of the Week awards this season which bumped her career total up to eight.

“I am extremely honored to be the Big Ten Setter of the Year in a conference that has some amazing setters," Hunter said in a release. "I feel like that award could have gone to a handful of players, so I am humbled that the coaches hold me in that regard. I am so thankful that I get to play with so many talented hitters that make my job easier every day. Coach Cook has been such a great mentor for me throughout my career, and I also owe a thank you to the all the assistants who have helped me throughout my Husker career.”

Hunter was a unanimous selection for the All-Big Ten team along with junior outside hitter Mikaela Foecke. Foecke averaged 3.61 kills per set in conference play (good for eighth in the Big Ten) while hitting .326. She was also tied for third in the league with 22 service aces and averaged 2.0 digs per set. She was on the honorable mention list last season and was named Big Ten Player of the Week on Oct. 30.

Annika Albrecht rounded out the trio of All-Big Ten Huskers. The senior outside hitter broke out as an attacker this season after spending her first three years primarily as a defensive specialist. Albrecht averaged 3.13 kills on .278 hitting and 2.67 digs per set in league play while also serving up 19 aces. Albrecht was named national player of the week by the AVCA and espnW as well as the Big Ten Player of the Week after posting 19 kills in Nebraska’s sweep at Penn State.

Senior middle blocker Briana Holman received honorable mention recognition after averaging 2.5 kills on .387, good for third in the Big Ten. She also averaged 1.09 blocks per set, ranking her sixth.

Redshirt freshman middle blocker Lauren Stivrins and true freshman right side hitter Jazz Sweet were both named to the All-Freshman team. Stivrins averaged 2.06 kills on .331 hitting and 1.03 blocks per set in conference play. Sweet put up 1.96 kills per set on .224 hitting while stepping in for Kadie Rolfzen on the right side.

Senior defensive specialist Sydney Townsend was named Nebraska’s Sportsmanship Award honoree. The senior from Lincoln played in every set this season and averaged 2.59 digs per set in league play. 

ALL-BIG TEN

  • Ali Bastianelli, Jr., MB, ILL
  • Jordyn Poulter, Jr., S, ILL
  • Carly Skjodt, Jr., OH, MICH
  • AUTUMN BAILEY, Sr., OH, MSU
  • Alyssa Garvelink, Sr., MB, MSU
  • Alexis Hart, So., OH, MINN
  • STEPHANIE SAMEDY, Fr., OPP, MINN
  • SAMANTHA SELIGER-SWENSON, Jr., S, MINN
  • Annika Albrecht, Sr., OH, NEB
  • MIKAELA FOECKE, Jr., OH, NEB
  • KELLY HUNTER, Sr., S, NEB
  • Symone Abbott, Sr., OH, NU
  • SIMONE LEE, Sr., OH, PSU
  • HALEIGH WASHINGTON, Sr., MB, PSU
  • Kendall White, So., L, PSU
  • SHERRIDAN ATKINSON, Jr., OPP, PUR
  • DANIELLE CUTTINO, Sr., OH, PUR
  • DANA RETTKE, Fr., MB, WIS
  • Tionna Williams, Jr., MB, WIS

* Unanimous selections in CAPS

HONORABLE MENTION

  • Jess Janota, Sr., MB, IOWA
  • Taylor Louis, Jr., OH, IOWA
  • Annika Olsen, Sr., L, IOWA
  • Hailey Murray, Sr., MB, MD
  • Claire Kieffer-Wright, Sr., MB, MICH
  • Rachel Minarick, Sr., S, MSU
  • Holly Toliver, Sr., OPP, MSU
  • Briana Holman, Sr., MB, NEB
  • Ashley Wenz, Sr., OH, OSU
  • Heidi Thelen, Sr., RS, PSU

ALL-FRESHMAN TEAM

  • Megan Cooney, OH, ILL
  • STEPHANIE SAMEDY, OPP, MINN
  • Jazz Sweet, OH, NEB
  • Lauren Stivrins, MB, NEB
  • Nia Robinson, OH, NU
  • Sydney Hilley, S, WIS
  • DANA RETTKE, MB, WIS

* Unanimous selections in CAPS

PLAYER OF THE YEAR

  • Simone Lee, PSU

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR

  • Haleigh Washington, PSU

SETTER OF THE YEAR

  • Kelly Hunter, NEB 

FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR

  • Dana Rettke, WIS 

COACH OF THE YEAR (COACHES)

  • John Cook, NEB 

COACH OF THE YEAR (MEDIA)

  • Russ Rose, PSU

SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD HONOREES

  • Beth Prince, ILL
  • Jessica Admire, IND
  • Annika Olsen, IOWA
  • Liz Twilley, MD
  • Maddy Abbott, MICH
  • Abby Monson, MSU
  • Molly Lohman, MINN
  • Sydney Townsend, NEB
  • Gabrielle Hazen, NU
  • Kalisha Goree, OSU
  • Carissa Damler, PUR
  • Lainy Pierce, PSU
  • Karysa Swackenberg, RU
  • Lauryn Gillis, WIS
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