Mikesky Named Team MVP at Volleyball Banquet
Feb. 10, 2015
Rice's volleyball program hosted its annual banquet on Sunday evening at Tudor Fieldhouse to cap off a sensational 2014 season. Sophomore Leah Mikesky received the Hally Beth Poindexter Award as MVP of the 2014 campaign.
A transfer from Florida State, Mikesky led the Owls in total kills (407) and kills per set (3.42) and was third in total digs (318) and fourth in total blocks (49). She also showed her balance by ranking first amongst all C-USA outside hitters in assists (26) and assists per set (0.46). In addition to winning Team MVP, Mikesky also received the Scholar-Athlete of the Year, boasting a 4.13 GPA in kinesiology and was named to the C-USA All-Academic squad.
Freshman Portia Okafor was selected as the Newcomer of the Year, ranking first amongst all C-USA freshmen in total blocks (89) and blocks per set (1.13). Okafor also ranked seventh and third, respectively, in those same categories amongst all middle blockers. The Lewisville, Texas native ranked fifth amongst all freshmen in hitting percentage (.272).
Andi Bawcum was named Most Improved after a breakout junior season, totaling 208 kills and was fourth on the team in kills per set (2.54). Bawcum was one of six Owls to earn a C-USA Player of the Week award.
Junior Kimberly Vaio received the Commitment Award, the only award voted on by the team. Vaio played through various injuries throughout the season and was second on the squad in total digs (322).
Senior Jillian Humphrey received the Hard Hat award after her best season as an Owl. The Shoreacres, Texas native was selected to the C-USA First-Team for the first time in her career, leading the league in hitting percentage (.437). She became just the second Owl in school history to tally 1,000 career kills and 500 career blocks. Humphrey was later named to the AVCA All-Region Team and was an AVCA All-American Honorable Mention.
As a team the Owls posted their highest GPA (3.55) in school history, second amongst all programs at Rice.
Hally Beth Poindexter Award (Team MVP): Leah Mikesky
Scholar-Athlete Award: Leah Mikesky
Newcomer of the Year: Portia Okafor
Most Improved: Andi Bawcum
Commitment Award: Kimberly Vaio
Hard Hat: Jillian Humphrey