Nov. 16, 2005
CLEVELAND - On the heels of its best regular season in more than two decades, the Cleveland State volleyball team dominated the year-end Horizon League awards announced today by the league office. Nickole Kennedy was named the league's Player of the Year, Jenni Ramminger was the Co-Newcomer of the Year and Chuck Voss was the Coach of the Year. Emily Clark and Danielle Siefker joined Kennedy on the 12-member All-Horizon League team.
This marks the first time in 18 seasons of league affiliation that CSU has placed three players on the All-League squad.
Kennedy (Sunbury, Ohio) led the league in hitting percentage (.315) and was third in kills (3.79) and fifth in blocks (1.06) en route to becoming the Vikings' first ever player of the year honoree. In league matches, the senior opposite ranked second in hitting percentage (.323) and kills (4.11) and fifth in blocks (1.15). This marks the second year in a row that Kennedy was named to the All-League team.
Ramminger (Cincinnati, Ohio) emerged as a defensive force for CSU, ranking fourth in the league in blocks (1.14) and sixth in hitting percentage (.279). The freshman started the last 27 contests at middle hitter and in conference matches only, ranked third in blocks (1.25) and eighth in hitting percentage (.284).
Ramminger shared the Newcomer of the Year honor with UW-Milwaukee libero Becky Peters. Alisa Hatcher was the only other player in school history to receive the award, also garnering co-honors in 2002. Ramminger and Peters comprised a third of the six-player All-Newcomer squad.
In his sixth year at the helm of the Vikings, Voss has completely turned the Cleveland State program around. The 19 wins this season are the most since 1988 and the 11 league victories are a school record. The first coach of the year honoree in school history, he has directed the team to four straight winning seasons and last year led CSU to its first appearance in a league championship match.
Clark (Bolivar, Ohio) is a first-time member of the all-league squad. The senior outside hitter ranked eighth in the league in digs (3.62) and was second on the team with eight double-doubles, including three straight to close out the regular season. One of CSU's two primary passers, she was aced just 32 times out of nearly 800 passing attempts.
Siefker (Kalida, Ohio) -- another first-time all-league pick -- led the league in blocks (1.28) while ranking second in hitting percentage (.293). The junior middle hitter hit over .500 seven times on the year and was tied for first in blocks (1.42) in conference play.
As the No. 2 seed in the upcoming Horizon League Championship, Cleveland State (19-9, 11-3 HL) receives a bye into the semifinals and will face a yet-to-be-determined opponent on Saturday, Nov. 19 at 4:30 p.m. CST. The tournament, which is being hosted by UIC, begins on Thursday, Nov. 17 and runs through Sunday, Nov. 20.