Mac foursome digs out OUA volleyball honours

Four McMaster Marauders where honoured when Ontario University Athletics announced the 2010-11 women’s volleyball All-Stars and major award winners.

Larissa Puhach (Burlington) and Sarah Kiernan (Hamilton) where both named to the OUA West first team. Shannon McRobert (Whitby) was selected as a second team all-star and head coach Tim Louks is the OUA West Coach of the Year recipient.

Kiernan won her first First-Team All-Star award having been named a Second-Team All-Star previously. She recorded 50 blocks and 158 kills for the season, averaging 3.09 points per game. Puhach, the team captain, was named a First-Team All-Star for the second year in a row. She recorded 170 kills averaging 2.36 per game and posted 27 aces throughout the conference season.

McRobert was named a Second-Team All-Star for the first time in her career. The 6’2” middle was ranked third in the league and led the team in blocks with 73.

Louks led the Marauders to a 16-3 record over the course of the season finishing tied for first in the division with Guelph. This was Louks’ second consecutive win and sixth honour since the 1997-98 season.

The West Division Libero of the Year was won by Claire Morrow (London) of the Western Mustangs. In her second season playing for Western she continued to be a leader in the back court. She recorded the second highest amount of digs this season with 292, beating last year’s tally of 291, and her digs per game was ranked first in the league at 4.63. This is Morrow’s second year in a row winning the award for the Mustangs.

Claudia Seguin (St. Pascal-Baylon) of the Ottawa Gee-Gees earned the East Division Libero of the Year award. The fourth-year veteran was the first Gee-Gee to win the award since it was instated in the 2007-08 season. She averaged 3.58 digs per game and recorded 261 digs over the regular season for Ottawa.

In the West Division, the Rookie of the Year award was won by Meaghan Loveday (Kitchener) of the Waterloo Warriors. The outside hitter became a starter this season for the Warriors early on and never looked back. In 61 games she recorded 154 kills and 12 blocks. The rookie totaled 167 points over the regular season for Waterloo and was named to the All Rookie Team.

The Rookie of the Year in the East Division went to Brandie Wilkerson (Brampton) of the York Lions. The first-year outside hitter made a huge impact on the Lions squad ranking second in the league in points per game with 4.06. She also ranked second in kills with 228 over 72 sets played. Her average kills per game was 3.17, making her first year a successful one as she helped York to a 14-5 record, good for first in the East. The rookie was named a Second-Team All-Star and was also named to the All Rookie Team.

Lionel Woods of the Ottawa Gee-Gees was named Coach of the Year for the East Division. Woods has won this award twice previously, once being the 2006-07 season, the same year Ottawa won their fourth and most recent OUA Championship. Since being hired on with the Gee-Gees in 1988, Woods has led Ottawa to a championship win, two silver medals and six Final Four appearances. This year, the Gee-Gees capped off the season with a 13-6 record and are headed to the Final Four.

The West Division Award of Merit winner was Tesca Andrew-Wasylik (Unionville) of the Laurier Golden Hawks. The fourth-year recorded 147 kills and 187 digs this season and has continually led the Hawks over her career. In her spare time Andrew-Wasylik spreads her love of the sport as a coach of an A.C.T.S. Elites Rep Volleyball Club team. In the summers, she worked at Laurier’s Volleyball U Camp as an assistant coach and mentor to over 60 Grade 11/12 girls, and as a coach at Madawaska Volleyball Camp.

Sarah Sutton (Scarborough) of the York Lions earned the East Division Award of Merit. The fifth-year veteran has consistently been a force on the Lions squad for her career. Having won and led the Lions to a championship two years ago, Sutton leadership has not gone unnoticed. This year, the outside hitter recorded 101 kills and 28 aces. Off the court the Lions captain volunteers on a regular basis in local schools and with local volleyball programs to teach young athletes the game of volleyball. Sutton also volunteers in the classroom with at-risk students offering academic support. She is a member of Sport York’s council and assists in organizing food drives, blood drives and fundraisers for cancer research.

The West Division First-Team All-Stars are headlined by Guelph’s Brooke Lloyd (Whitby) and Kylen Van Osch (Exeter). Lloyd was named an All-Star for the first time in her career in the OUA. The third-year left side recorded 181 kills and 40 blocks. She dug up 196 balls for the Gryphons and aced 29 times in the season. Van Osch, a fifth-year middle for the Gryphons, was ranked third in the league with points per game with 3.80. She made the OUA top ten in blocks with 58 and recorded 169 kills. This is her second time in a row being named an OUA First-Team All-Star.

Shannon Anderson (Newmarket) earned a First-Team All-Star nod for the Brock Badgers as she ranked third overall in kills with 218. The fourth-year averaged 3.21 kills per game over the 2010-11 season and was previously named a Second-Team All-Star two years ago. Rounding out the First-Team All-Stars in the West Division was Jenna Thomson (St. Mary’s) of the Western Mustangs. The fifth-year veteran finished off her last regular season with 571 assists and 23 aces for the Mustangs and was named a First-Team All-Star for the second year in a row.

Western named three Mustangs to the Second-Team All-Stars in the West Division. Kelly Fritenberg (Alton) recorded 3.67 points per game over the season, good for fifth overall and was a key to Western offence throughout the season in the middle. Rebecca Oxland (North Vancouver, B.C.) and Elaine Screaton (Calgary) were also named Second-Team All-Stars recording 110 and 164 kills, respectively.

Guelph’s Erinn Bickle (Whitby) was also named to the list as the middle recorded 67 blocks and 125 kills. Named as Second-Team All-Star setter, Brock Badger Ally Fast (St. Catharines) was ranked first in the league in assists with 629 and averaged 8.99 assists per game.

East Division leaders, the York Lions, named two vets to the First-Team All-Star list. Joining Sutton is teammate Kristina Vlcek (Toronto), who is a First-Team All-Star for the second time in her career. The third-year middle has been a staple in the Lions offence and this year averaged 3.30 points per game. She recorded 116 kills and 43 blocks over the season. 

Natalie Gray (Oshawa), of the Queen’s Gaels, earned a First Team All-Star nod for the second time in her career. The outside hitter recorded 191 kills for the Gaels, good for fifth in the league and dug up 191 balls in the regular season. Teammate Katie Matthews (Aurora) was named an All-Star for the third year in a row, the last two being Second-Team nods. The middle has been a constant on the Gaels defence. She was ranked first overall with 81 blocks had an average of 3.42 points per game.

Right side Vanessa Chorkawy (Lively) of Lakehead was the Thunderwolves standout on the All-Star list. She led the league in kills and points per game the entire season. Totaling 311 kills, the third-year scored an extra 103 kills more than the second ranked player on the list. She averaged 5.10 points per game, the next closest player being at 4.06. This is the first time Chorkawy has been named a First-Team All-Star.

Rounding out the East First-Team All-Stars was setter Tess Edwards (Kanata) of the Ottawa Gee-Gees. The fifth-year recorded 568 assists over the course of the season and served 41 aces, good for second in the league. For the Gee-Gees, Myriam English (Orleans) was named a Second-Team All-Star in her first season. The right side recorded 210 kills and 48 blocks for Ottawa and was also named to the All Rookie Team.

Also making the Second-Team All-Star list were two RMC Paladins. The Paladins have never had a women’s volleyball player named an All-Star since their inception into the league in 2004. Mallory Litjens (Ottawa) recorded 116 assists and 74 kills in her first season in the OUA. The middle and sometimes setter led her team to their first playoff appearance in the OUA this season. Teammate Danielle Vortisch (Whitby) was also named a Second-Team All-Star. The rookie earned 144 kills and recorded 289 digs in her first year with the Paladins. She was also named to the All Rookie Team.

Lorna Button (Newcastle) of the Queen’s Gaels was named a Second-Team All-Star for the second time in her career. The third-year outside hitter had 121 kills over the course of the season and 38 aces. The only All-Star for the Blues this year was Karlee Diesing (Coquitlam, B.C.). The fifth-year left side recorded 125 kills for Toronto.

Joining English, Loveday, Vortisch and Wilkerson on the All Rookie Team was libero Tess Palmateer (Aurora) of the Brock Badgers. The rookie dug up 155 balls in 51 games played for the Badgers. Rounding out the Rookie Team was Brianna Balzer (Windsor) of the Windsor Lancers. The middle had 66 kills and 30 blocks in the regular season.

The 2011 OUA Women’s Volleyball Final Four Championship will be hosted by the Guelph Gryphons this year after finishing with a 16-3 record. The Gryphons will face off against the Ottawa Gee-Gees in semifinal action and the Western Mustangs will take on the York Lions. The showdown for the 2011 championship gets underway Friday, Feb. 25.

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