Three Named to the AVCA All-South Region Team
Dec. 6, 2011
LEXINGTON, Ky. – Three players and head coach Craig Skinner from the 16th-ranked and Sweet 16 bound Kentucky volleyball team have been tabbed American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-South Region it was announced by the organization Tuesday. Juniors Christine Hartmann and Stephanie Klefot and sophomore Whitney Billings have all been honored for the first time in their careers. Skinner is the All-Region Coach of the Year for the first time in his seven-year career.
With three players honored this season, it equals a program record set in 2009 with three players tabbed to the first team. Skinner is the first UK coach honored since 1993.
Skinner has led the Wildcats to a 28-5 overall record and a Sweet 16 appearance for the second time in three years. Under Skinner’s direction, UK has notched 17 or more victories in all seven seasons and charted four seasons with 20 or more wins including in 2011. He led a program-record five players to earn All-Southeastern Conference accolades and senior Ann Armes was named the SEC Scholar Athlete of the Year. Furthermore, Kentucky ranked in the top-five in every statistical category in the SEC, while charting six more conference wins than a season ago.
Billings ranks as the Wildcats’ most versatile player excelling in a multitude of ways. She averages 2.47 kills, 2.64 digs and 0.69 blocks per set as UK’s right-side attacker. Billings’ provided a spark in helping UK advance to the NCAA Regionals this week with a career-high 20 digs in Kentucky’s opening round win over Dayton and matched a season-high with 17 kills in the victory over Texas A&M.
Hartmann has enjoyed a career-season in directing the Wildcat offense to the tune of 14.20 kills per set and a .249 hitting percentage. Hartmann ranks among the nation’s best with 11.20 assists per frame. She has set match-highs in every category this season including assists, blocks, kills and aces in leading UK to a 28-5 overall record and its second Sweet 16 appearance in the last three seasons.
Klefot has recorded 587 digs on the season which ranks as the highest total in a single-season in UK history. She is a repeat winner of the Southeastern Conference Libero of the Year and led the league with an average of 4.81 digs per set. The Louisville, Ky., native has charted 10 or more digs in all but one match this season for the Blue and White.
Skinner and the Wildcats will hit the floor on Friday night in Memorial Coliseum for the NCAA Regionals as the Wildcats open up play against the No. 1 overall seed in Texas. It marks the first time in program history that UK’s home gym will play host to the NCAA Regionals with an opportunity to advance to the Final Four.
Saturday, Dec. 10
ESPN will broadcast all three matches in some fashion with ESPN3.com carrying the opening round games, and a live national telecast on ESPU to follow on Saturday afternoon. Holly Rowe and Jennifer Hoffmann will be on the call for all three matches.
All-session tickets are on sale now. Single session tickets will go on sale Friday, Dec. 9 based on availability.
UK Ticket Office - (859) 257-1818
All-session tickets are on sale now.
Single session tickets go on sale Friday, Dec. 9 based on availability
Kentucky students can receive free admission to the NCAA Regionals by presenting a valid student ID at the UK Ticket Office on Friday between the hours of 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Visit UKathletics.com for the most up-to-date information on the UK volleyball team and all of Kentucky’s 22 teams.