Four SCAC Volleyball Players Earn AVCA All-America Recognition

Four SCAC Volleyball Players Earn AVCA All-America Recognition

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) announced the 2019 Division III All-America teams Tuesday and four Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference players were recognized. AVCA Release

Emily Ellis and Avery Tuggle of Trinity University were both named to the Second Team while Colorado College's Lizzy Counts was a Third Team selection. CC's Georgia Mullins earned Honorable Mention recognition. All four earned First Team All-Region honors a week ago.

Ellis, a sophomore middle blocker from Geogetown, Texas, earned her first All-SCAC First Team nod after earning Second Team honors a year ago. A two-time SCAC Player of the Week during the 2019 season, Ellis also earned American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Division III National Player of the Week honors when she posted 20 blocks and 32 kills to go with a .359 hitting percentage in leading the Tigers to victories over Cal Lutheran and then sixth-ranked Juniata. Ellis leads the conference in hitting percentage (.418), total blocks (137), and blocks per set (1.04).

Tuggle, a junior outside hitter from Cedar Creek, Texas, and the 2019 SCAC Player-of-the-Year, leads the SCAC in points (528.5) and kills (449) and is in the top five in kills per set (3.16 – second) and points per set (3.7 – third). A three‐time SCAC Offensive Player‐of‐the‐Week selection (Week 1, Week 4 and Week 9), the versatile Tuggle is also ranked in the top 20 in the conference in service aces (44 – tied for eighth), digs (474 – 10th), blocks (62 – T16th) and hitting percentage (.249 – 15th). She has 19 double‐double performances over the course of the season, including a streak of five straight matches from Sept. 14 to Sept. 25 where she posted double‐ figure outputs for both kills and digs.

Trinity volleyball has now produced 22 All-Americans elected to the First, Second, and Third Teams. The 35 certificates for those All-Americans places Trinity in seventh place in Division III.

Counts, a senior setter from Oakland, Calif., was named an All-American for the third time in her career - one of just five players on this year's list with three All-American accolades. A three-time All-SCAC First Team selection, The 2017 SCAC Player of the Year, Counts led the Tigers to a .268 team hitting percentage which ranked first in the conference and fourth nationally. Counts currently leads the SCAC averaging 9.03 assists per set and this past week became the second player in program history to record 4,000 or more in her career. The two-time All-American also ranked among the team leaders with 230 digs, 37 total blocks and 24 aces.

Counts joins Cathy Costello (1986, '87, '88, '89), Abby Holtze (2013, '15, '16) and Amy Smith (1985, '86, '87) as the only four players in program history with at least three All-America certificates.

Mullins, a sophomore middle blocker from Olathe, Kansas, earned all-SCAC First Team honors in her first season as a starter. She currently ranks third in the conference with a .338 hitting percentage and 11th averaging 2.63 kills per set. She led the Tigers with 310 kills and 396 points, and is sixth with 23 aces. On the defensive side of the net, Mullins posted a team-high 110 total blocks (fourth in the SCAC) and averaged 0.93 blocks per set (third in the SCAC), helping the Tigers rank first in the conference and 10th nationally with a .107 opponent hitting percentage.