Volleyball Announces Team Awards at Annual Banquet

DURHAM, N.H. -- The University of New Hampshire volleyball team held its annual awards banquet on Saturday, April 19 at the Sheraton Inn in Portsmouth, N.H.

Among the honorees at the banquet were the two senior co-captains, Morgan Thatcher (Brockton, Mass.) and Destiny Tolliver (Rochester, Mich.). The two right side hitters were recognized for their hard work and dedication to the program through their collegiate careers. The Class of 2014 led New Hampshire to clinch an automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament by virtue of winning the 2013 America East Championship with a 20-12 overall record and 12-2 in conference play. UNH went on to compete against sixth-ranked University of Southern California in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

Thatcher and Tolliver took home a share of the Holly Young Most Valuable Player Award. Thatcher receives the award for the second consecutive year while Tolliver earns her first-ever. Thatcher is the first player in UNH volleyball history player to receive the Holly Young Most Valuable Player since Leisha Campbell accomplished the feat in 1996 and 1999.

The America East Player of the Year, Thatcher was also a conference First Team selection and received Player of the Week honors on Sept. 3. An America East All-Tournament Team mention, she tied the team lead in kills and ranked second in America East with 349, averaging a team-best 3.06 kills per set. Thatcher, a two-time co-captain, became the seventh player in UNH volleyball history to amass 1,000 career kills. The senior finished her collegiate career with 1,165 kills to rank fifth all-time in program history.

A co-captain and All-Conference Second Team selection, Tolliver led the America East in total blocks with 130. Starting in all 33 games, Tolliver ranked third on the squad in kills with 219, calculating to 1.84 kps. She led the America East Championships in total blocks (18) and hitting percentage (.444) to garner conference All-Tournament honors. The senior right side hitter became the fifth player in UNH volleyball history to rack up 300 blocks. Tolliver concluded her collegiate career with 357 blocks to rank third all-time in program history.  

Freshman setter Keelin Severtson (Delray Beach, Fla.) received the Ed Jentes Coaches' Award. Severtson appeared in 12 matches and dished out 47 assists during the 2013 season. She held the second highest assist percentage on the squad with a .331 clip. 

Sophomore middle blocker Cassidy Croci (Sylvania, Ohio) earned the Judy Ray Academic Excellence Award for having the highest grade point average on the team. A CoSIDA Division I All-District First Team and America East All-Academic Team mention, she finished the season with 77 kills and a .210 hitting percentage in 28 matches played. Croci posted a career-high 11 kills on the strength of a .500 hitting percentage in a win against St. John's (N.Y.) on Sept. 7.

The Players' Award was bestowed upon junior defensive specialist Katie Sattora (Avon, N.Y.). For the second-straight year. Sattora played in all 33 matches and appeared in 109 sets. She scooped up 193 digs and tallied 13 service aces, ranking fifth on the team in each category. 

Junior defensive specialist Sam Henke (Millersville, Md.) garnered the Strength and Conditioning Award. The accolade is given to the student-athlete who fully utilizes the strength and conditioning program in all its facets to maximize their athletic performance, and exemplifies the work ethic one would expect in a championship athlete. Henke, an America East All-Academic mention, appeared in all 33 matches during the 2013 campaign, ranking second on the team in service aces (25) and third in digs (244).

Red shirt sophomore Kym Gordon (Canandaigua, N.Y.) earned the Lunch Bucket Award, given to the hardest working student-athlete that elicits the greatest work ethic toward their athletic development. Gordon, a 6-foot-2 middle hitter, transferred to UNH after playing for Akron and Mississippi State with two years of eligibility remaining. She sat out the 2013 season due to NCAA transfer regulations. However, the middle hitter was recognized off the court for pushing her teammates to excel in practices and at games.

Dot Sheehan, senior associate athletic director for external relations, merited the Karl Van Asselt Assist Award. The award embodies the outstanding support shown by recipients to the volleyball program.

Visit UNHWildcats.com for the most-up-to-date information on the UNH volleyball team and all 20 varsity sports. For additional information on the volleyball team, like the squad on Facebook or follow the 'Cats on Twitter and Instagram at @UNHVOLLEYBALL. 

 


Morgan
Thatcher

Holly Young
co-MVP

Destiny
Tolliver

Holly Young
co-MVP

Keelin
Severtson
Ed Jentes
Coaches' Award

 Cassidy
Croci

Judy Ray Academic Excellence Award
Katie
Sattora

Players'
Award

Sam
Henke

Strength & Conditioning Award

Kym
Gordon

Lunch Bucket
Award

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