Three NCAA Div. III national titles
PELLA—For a record 13th straight year, the Central College volleyball team has received the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Team Academic Award.
It’s the most consecutive years any college has received the honor. Central has been cited 14 times overall. To receive AVCA distinction, a team’s combined grade point average (GPA) for the preceding year must be a 3.30 or higher (4.0 scale).
The Dutch compiled a 3.418 combined team GPA for 2012-13. Central had eight volleyball players earn academic all-Iowa Conference recognition last fall, which requires a 3.50 or better cumulative GPA. Seniors Liz Ihnen (Sheldon) and Keeley Orvis (Cedar Falls) and juniors Jessica Laflin (Phoenix, Ariz., Horizon Honors HS), Kari Sandage (Atlantic), Sara Snead (Altoona, Southeast Polk HS) and Claire Stewart (Colorado Springs, Classical Academy HS) all received the honor. Graduated athletes Emily Huegel (Bettendorf, Pleasant Valley HS) and Sam Retz (Atkins, Benton Community HS) were also cited.
Head coach Kent Clayberg said the award shows that the Central volleyball program strives for excellence on and off the court.
“We are very pleased with the continued commitment to academic excellence by our women,” he said. “The team academic award is something we take great pride in and work very hard for as an entire program. It is reflective and indicative of the dedication to development of the whole person. Our women are competitive athletes, but there is much more they have to offer the world.”
Central was one of 13 Iowa schools to receive the award, including five in the Iowa Conference. Also recognized were Ashford, Clarke, Coe, Cornell, Dordt, Dubuque, Graceland, Iowa State, Northern Iowa, Simpson, Upper Iowa and Wartburg.