Birmingham, Ala. - The Southeastern Conference announced its annual volleyball awards to cap the 2016 season. The All-SEC Team consists of 18 student-athletes, along with a seven-member All-Freshman squad. No ties were broken.
Krystal Rivers, a senior right side hitter at Alabama, was selected as the 2016 SEC Volleyball Player of the Year. This marks the first time a member of the Crimson Tide program has won this honor. Rivers is currently ranked second in the nation in total kills with 640, and third in kills per set (5.77), points per set (6.57) and total points (729.5). She was named the SEC Offensive Player of the Week four times and the SEC Player of the Week twice this season.
In addition, Rivers was also chosen as the 2015 SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year award, marking the first time a student-athlete was named Player of the Year and Scholar-Athlete of the Year in the same season. She is also the first player from Alabama to be named Scholar-Athlete of the Year since the first award was given to Erin Price in 2003. Rivers is a Spanish major with a 3.65 GPA. She is a two-time honoree on the CoSIDA Academic All-District Team and the SEC Academic Honor Roll. Rivers was also named a CoSIDA Academic All-American in 2014. She is a six-time honoree on the Dean's List and a two-time honoree on the President's List.
Kentucky junior defensive specialist Ashley Dusek was named the SEC Libero of the Year for the second consecutive year. A two-time Defensive Player of the Week selection, she is second in the league in digs per set (4.80) and total digs (456). This is the fourth Libero of the Year honor for the Wildcats and their fifth Defensive Player of the Year award overall.
Leah Edmond of Kentucky was tabbed the 2016 SEC Freshman of the Year. The outside hitter is currently second behind Rivers in the conference ranking in both kills per set (4.29) and points per set (4.79). She is also averaging 10.31 attacks per set, and has 455 total points during her rookie campaign. Edmond has earned eight SEC Freshman of the Week awards and was named the SEC Player of the Week twice this season.
Missouri head coach Wayne Kreklow was voted the 2016 SEC Coach of the Year. The Tigers are currently 14-2 in league play and in a tie for second place heading into the last two matches of the regular season. Missouri ranked No. 22 in the AVCA Coaches Top 25 and seventh in the latest NCAA RPI rankings. This marks the second time Kreklow was named the SEC Coach of the Year, winning the award previously in 2013.
Player of the Year: Krystal Rivers, Alabama
Libero of the Year: Ashley Dusek, Kentucky
Freshman of the Year: Leah Edmond, Kentucky
Scholar-Athlete of the Year: Krystal Rivers, Alabama
Coach of the Year: Wayne Kreklow, Missouri
Krystal Rivers, Alabama
Jesse Earl, Auburn
Alexa Filley, Auburn
Rhamat Alhassan, Florida
Alex Holston, Florida
Carolina Knop, Florida
Allie Monserez, Florida
Carli Snyder, Florida
Kaz Brown, Kentucky
Olivia Dailey, Kentucky
Ashley Dusek, Kentucky
Leah Edmond, Kentucky
Melanie Crow, Missouri
Carly Kan, Missouri
Alyssa Munlyn, Missouri
Stephanie Aiple, Texas A&M
Jazzmin Babers, Texas A&M
Kaitlyn Blake, Texas A&M
Hayley McSparin, Alabama
Gwyn Jones, Auburn
Rachael Kramer, Florida
Leah Edmond, Kentucky
Mikayla Shields, South Carolina
Tessa Grubbs, Tennessee
Hollann Hans, Texas A&M