November 8, 2008

Southwestern sweeps major awards in 2008 All-SCAC Volleyball voting

MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Southwestern University, winners of 20 straight matches and the top seed for this weekend's Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Volleyball Tournament, was rewarded for its highly successful season with a sweep of the league's four major postseason awards in exclusive all-conference voting by the head coaches of the SCAC.

Audra Gentry was named the SCAC Player-of-the-Year and teammates Lindsay Thompson and Samantha Lingamfelter were named the league's Freshman and Backrow Player-of-the-Year respectively. Southwestern head coach Hannah Long was tabbed as the SCAC Coach-of-the-Year.

Gentry, a junior outside hitter from Albuquerque, N.M., has been the 13th-ranked Pirates' go-to player all season. She finished the regular season second in the conference in both kills (371) and kills per set (3.50). Her 392 digs were good for second on the team. Gentry, the team's captain, also posted 38 service aces and 33 blocks in leading Southwestern to a league-best 14-1 conference mark; 32-3 overall. She is the third player from Southwestern, and first since 2005, to earn SCAC Player-of-the-Year honors.

Six different players received votes for Player-of-the-Year, led by Gentry who was atop four of the coaches' ballots. Anna Clithero of Colorado College and Megan Guest of Trinity University received two votes each while Adrienne Cobb of DePauw University, Megan Dudley of Trinity and Lindsay Thompson of Southwestern all received one vote.

Lindsay Thompson, a first-year middle blocker from Austin, Texas, hit a league-best .369 during the regular season with 253 kills (2.43 per set) and just 60 errors on 523 total attacks. She was also third in the league in blocks, averaging 1.13 per set.  She is the third player from Southwestern, and the first since 2002, to earn the league's Freshman-of-the-Year award.

Thompson received seven votes in earning FOTY honors, four clear of Meredith Ballard of Colorado College, who received three votes. Stephanie Woeste of Centre College received the remaining vote.

Samantha Lingamfelter, a junior libero from New Braunfels, Texas, was selected as the league's Backrow Player-of-the-Year for the second consecutive year. Lingamfelter had 569 digs and finished fourth in the league in digs per set with 4.78 during the regular season. In just three seasons of play, she has already cracked the league's top 10 list for career digs with 2,040. In addition to her digging prowess, Lingamfelter is second in the SCAC this season with 69 service aces.

Lingamfelter received five votes from the coaches in earning the Backrow Player-of-the-Year award, edging out Emily Smith of DePauw, who received four votes. Megan Guest of Trinity was awarded two votes.

Head Coach Hannah Long led Southwestern to a 14-1 conference mark; 32-3 overall record (the team's fourth-straight 30+ win season), and a first-place finish during the 2008 SCAC regular season. The Pirates are currently riding a 20-match win streak. In her five seasons in Georgetown, Long has compiled a 155-39 overall record and a 67-16 record in SCAC play. Also the SCAC Coach-of-the-Year in 2005, she is the first Southwestern coach to earn the honor twice. Last year, Long led the Pirates to an overall record of 30-12 (8-6 SCAC) while also receiving an at-large bid and a third straight appearance to the NCAA Division III championship tournament again advancing to the South Regional semifinals.

To view the complete 2008 All-SCAC Volleyball Team, click here.

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