Gallaudet women's volleyball earns sixth straight AVCA Team Academic Award
LEXINGTON, Ky. – For a sixth consecutive year the Gallaudet University volleyball team landed on the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Team Academic Award list. Gallaudet is one of 90 NCAA Division III women's team recipients for the 2011-12 season.
Gallaudet repeated as North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) champions this past season and earned a second straight trip to the NCAA Division III tournament. The Bison traveled to Newport News, Va., and lost to Salisbury University in the first round of the tournament. Gallaudet finished with a 28-8 overall record and posted a 9-1 conference mark. GU was 8-1 at home in the Field House last season. The NCAA appearance was the eighth in program history.
"Hats off to the Gallaudet volleyball student-athletes who continue to excel in the classroom while also competing at a high level on the court representing their school," said Gallaudet University volleyball coach Lynn Ray Boren, who will enter his eighth season at the helm this fall. "I always tell myself how fortunate I am to have these student-athletes."
GU is only one of two NEAC programs to earn this honor for the 2011-12 season as the Bison join Penn St.-Harrisburg among the 90 Division III programs recognized.
The AVCA Team Academic Award, which was initiated in the 1992-93 academic year, honors collegiate and high school volleyball teams that displayed excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team GPA on a 4.0 scale or a 4.10 cumulative team GPA on a 5.0 scale.
The AVCA set a new team record with 534 teams honored in 2011-12, that surpasses last year's mark of 481. The Team Academic Award has become one of the AVCA's fastest growing awards programs, seeing an impressive surge in teams honored over the past several years. Since the 2000-2001 season, the number of recipients has increased every single year but one, while amassing an overall 200 percent increase over the span of the last decade. Since the award's inception in 1993, the award has risen by an astounding 760 percent. NCAA Division I recorded their highest-ever total number of recipients, honoring 103 programs while Division II easily surpassed last year's record of 57 winners with 68 this year. Division III also set a new record with 90 winners and the high school division increased their all-time high of 192 recipients to 220. Finally, the NCAA men broke new ground landing a record seven schools on the final AVCA Team Academic Award list.
University of Wisconsin-La Crosse saw its 11-year streak, the longest in Division III snapped. Over 1,000 different schools have earned the award in the program's 20-year history, with exactly 4,827 awards been given out in total. Only two institutions, both high schools, have earned the distinction all 20 years: Jonesboro High School (Jonesboro, Arkansas) and Ross S. Sterling High School (Baytown, Texas).
Gallaudet begins the 2012 season on August 31 against Messiah College at the Battlefield Classic in Gettysburg, Pa. The Bison will be recognized for their 2011-12 AVCA Team Academic Award at home on Wednesday, September 12, against Goucher College at 7 p.m.
The AVCA, with its headquarters in Lexington, Ky., is managed by Associations International. The mission of the AVCA is to develop and grow the sport of volleyball; with a membership of over 5,000 and counting, the AVCA provides a professional network for those individuals and companies dedicated to enhancing and developing the sport. Members are comprised of national and international coaches, collegiate, high school, club, youth and Olympic coaches, as well as club directors. Other members include former players, officials, media members and other friends of volleyball. As a group, the AVCA is committed to the development, growth, advancement and publicity of volleyball throughout the world. Further information is available at www.avca.org.