By Megan Acuna | Staff Writer |
As if a CCAA championship was not enough to keep the spirits of our women’s volleyball team high, it was recently announced that five players have also earned All-CCAA honors.
Those who earned first-team honors were senior setter Camille Smith, senior middle blocker Mercedes Winchester and freshman outside hitter Alexandra Torline.
Second-team honors were granted to freshman middle blocker Brenna McIntosh and sophomore libero Arielle McCullough.
According to Mark Reinhiller, the quintet was instrumental in the Coyotes earning their seventh straight CCAA title, 13th consecutive NCAA Tournament berth and providing coach Kim Cherniss with her 16th consecutive season of 20 or more victories.
Smith is a two time All-American who leads the team in overall assists (1,012) and serve percentage (.941). She once was also named the CCAA Player of the Week on Oct. 8.
The phenomenal player was also named to the All-West Region AVCA team.
Not just a great setter, Smith’s stats show that she is an all-around threat to any team they play. She is second on the leader board for the team in digs (276) and average of digs per game (2.73).
In addition, she has 93 kills for the season as well as 70 blocks. Smith also ranks third in the entire CCAA in number of assists per set with an average of 10.02 and ranks fifth in service aces per set with 0.35.
Winchester ranks second on the team with 263 kills for the season, second with 108 blocks and ninth with 37 digs.
She ranks sixth overall in CCAA with a 0.97 average of blocks per set and seventh in hitting percentage with .306 average.
The senior middle blocker was also given honorable mention honors by the AVCA.
Winchester should definitely consider herself lucky when just two years ago doctors told her she had stress fractures in both legs and shouldn’t be walking, let alone playing volleyball.
The road to recovery was a long one for Winchester, but she says she is “humbled and now so much more appreciative to be able to walk.”
“I go to the rec center and workout five days a week to be the best player I can be for my team. After going through all that I went through, I couldn’t imagine not going 100 percent,” said Winchester.
McCullough is first on her team’s leader board in digs and boasts 494 digs for the season, which gives her an average of 4.26 digs per game. The sophomore libero also ranks third on the team with 59 assists and 0.51 assists per game.
Torline leads her team in number of kills with 298 and an average of 3.01 per game and is third in number of blocks having 75 and an average of .80 per game.
McIntosh is also one of our Coyotes who was named a CCAA player of the week. She earned the title for her play during the week of November 5-11. She was also named to the Daktronics All-West Region second team.
The freshman middle blocker ranks third in CCAA for hitting percentage with .333, second in block assists (125), block totals (142), and blocks per set (1.41). She also ranks seventh in CCAA for solo blocks with 17.
Not focused on their individual accolades, however, the Coyotes will continue to look for continued success in their playoff run and hope that their star players will continue to provide the firepower that will lead them deep into the playoffs.