Trio of Owls Earn AVCA Southwest Region Honors

Dec. 6, 2016

2016 Division I AVCA Regional Awards

HOUSTON – Rice volleyball athletes Chelsey Harris and Madison McDaniel were selected to the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Southwest Region team while Portia Okafor was named Honorable Mention Southwest Region, the organization announced on Tuesday.

With the trio earning AVCA All-Region honors, 16 different Owls have been recognized by the organization under head coach Genny Volpe since 2004. All three players are now eligible for All-America consideration.

Harris, a native of Houston, was selected to the Conference USA First Team for the first time in her career this past season and was named to the C-USA Championship All-Tournament Team. Harris 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.

McDaniel, from The Woodlands, was also selected to the Conference USA First Team and led all of C-SA with 21 double-doubles. McDaniel led the Owls and all of C-USA in total assists (1,291), assists per set (10.67-3rd in C-USA) and was second on the team in total digs (391) and digs per set (3.23). She recorded her 2,000th career assist in a win over North Texas (10/28) and earned the C-USA Setter of the Week (10/17) and the C-USA Defensive Player of the Week (10/3).

Okafor, a native of Lewisville, Texas, was named to the Conference USA Second Team. Okafor led all of Conference USA in blocks per set (1.28) and was second in the league in total blocks (136). She also posted the most blocks (73) in C-USA during league play and had the best blocks per set average (1.52). Okafor was selected the Conference USA Defensive Player of the Week (10/17) and is currently the all-time leading hitter (.333) in Rice history.





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