Feb. 22, 2010
PULLMAN, Wash. -- Four Cougar seniors who completed their playing careers were celebrated and year-end awards were handed out at the Washington State Volleyball 2009 awards banquet Saturday, Feb. 20, at the Compton Union Building.
The banquet highlighted the 2009 Washington State volleyball team that returned to the NCAA Tournament after a seven-year absence, and feted the accomplishments of seniors Jackie Albright (Lake Forest, Calif.),Renee Bordelon (Coeur d'Alene), Kelly Hyder (Huntington Beach, Calif.) and Cassie Robbins (Yakima). Head Coach Andrew Palileo was also honored with a plaque from the conference for being voted the Pac-10 Volleyball Coach of the Year.
The P.R.O.W.L. Academic Award went to Albright for having the top grade point average on the team. Albright, a tri-captain and four-year starter at outside hitter, also was awarded the Most Inspirational Award, as voted by the players. The criteria for Most Inspirational is for the student-athlete who has had the greatest impact on her teammates in motivating, encouraging and overall support; one who demonstrates the ability to lead not by her words alone, but through her actions as well. In 2009, Albright was second on team with 2.78 kills per set and tied for second on team with 3.04 digs per set. She was named to Nike Cougar Invite all-tournament team. She was named to the ESPN The Magazine Dist. VIII All-Academic first team with 3.56 GPA in civil engineering and named to Pac-10 All-Academic second team.
Middle blocker Cassie Robbins was selected the Most Improved player by her teammates. Robbins was voted the student-athlete who has shown the greatest change from the previous year, based not only on the way she handles herself on the court but off the court as well. Robbins was named to the All-Pac-10 honorable mention team as well as the Pac-10 All-Academic honorable mention team. She led the Cougars in blocking with an average of 1.21, fourth-best in Pac-10 and 44th in NCAA.
The Coaches' Coug Award was given to Bordelon. The award is given to the person who is committed to being the ideal student athlete, demonstrated by academic excellence, leadership and commitment to the values of the volleyball program. This individual, throughout her career, has shown what being a Coug is all about. Bordelon, a tri-captain and setter, was named to the All-Pac-10 honorable mention team. She was named MVP of Utah Valley La Quinta Inn & Suites Invite and to the Nike Cougar Invite all-tournament team. Bordelon was named Pac-10 Player of the Week for Aug. 31-Sept. 7. Her 11.47 assists per set average was third-best in the Pac-10 and 14th nationally.
The Most Valuable Player was awarded to freshman Oceana Bush by a vote of the players. The MVP is given to the student-athlete who the team has the most confidence in. She is the most consistent player at all times and is not only a leader on the court but off the court as well. Bush, from Spokane, was named to the Pac-10 All-Freshman first team. She was named the top libero at Utah Valley La Quinta Inn & Suites Invite. Bush set the school record with 39 digs against Arizona State. She led the Cougars and was fourth-best in the Pac-10 with 4.78 digs per set. She had double-digit digs in 29 of 31 matches in 2009, with 9 digs in the other two matches. Bush was named to COBRA Magazine (www.cobramag.t83.net) All-National Third Team (highlighting the accomplishments of African American players). She was not able to attend the banquet because she was in Colorado at the USA National Team tryouts.