Harris Named Team MVP at Volleyball Banquet

Feb. 27, 2017

Rice's volleyball program hosted its annual team banquet last Friday evening at the Brian Patterson Sports Performance Center to cap off a sensational 2016 season. Senior Chelsey Harris received the Hally Beth Poindexter Award as MVP of the 2016 campaign.

Harris, a native of Houston, garnered AVCA All-America Honorable Mention this past season and was selected to the Conference USA First Team for the first time in her career. In addition, Harris was named to the C-USA Championship All-Tournament Team. She led the team in total kills (432-3rd in C-USA), kills per set (3.57-5th in C-USA) and total points (475.0-4th in C-USA). This season she became just the 14th player in Rice history to surpass 1,000 career kills and finished her career with the seventh-most kills (1,357) in school history.

Harris' fellow senior teammate Leah Mikesky had a big evening, taking home the Commitment Award (voted on by the team), the Hard Hat award and the Scholar Athlete award. Mikesky was named a 2016 CoSIDA Academic All-America Division I First Team honoree, after earning a 4.01 GPA while majoring in Kinesiology. Mikesky was also named to her third consecutive Conference USA All-Academic Team and was selected to the District 7 CoSIDA Academic All-District team, which made her eligible to be named a CoSIDA All-American. A member of the C-USA Second Team, Mikesky ranked third in the league with 15 double-doubles. She was second on the Owls in total kills (368-8th C-USA), kills per set (3.12) and total points (398.5) and third on the team in total digs (318) and digs per set (2.69).

Other award winners included freshman libero Lee Ann Cunningham as the team's Newcomer of the Year, while junior outside hitter Shelby Livingstone took home Most Improved honors.

A member of the C-USA All-Freshman Team, Cunningham ranked second in all of C-USA with 511 digs and was fourth in digs per set (4.22). The Kentucky native had the second-most digs (32) in a single match among C-USA players this season and in the process became the first Owl with 30-plus digs in a match since 2013.

Livingstone, from Malibu, Calif., recorded 148 kills and 266 digs and was fifth on the team with 178.0 points. She played in all 121 sets and was a big reason why the Owls advanced to the C-USA Championships title match vs. WKU.

As a team the Owls won 20 matches for a third consecutive season and led all of C-USA in team digs (1,938), team total attacks (4,375), and team total blocks (309.5).



Hally Beth Poindexter Award (Team MVP): Chelsey Harris
Scholar-Athlete Award: Leah Mikesky
Newcomer of the Year: Lee Ann Cunningham
Most Improved: Shelby Livingstone
Commitment Award: Leah Mikesky
Hard Hat: Leah Mikesky




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