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Thursday, November 15, 2007
Nov. 15, 2007
Four Lipscomb Lady Bisons earned accolades from the coaches and sports information directors in the Atlantic Sun Conference.
Freshman setter Stefine "Jake" Pease was named Atlantic Sun Freshman of the Year, the first time a Lipscomb volleyball player has won that honor. Pease and middle blocker Alex Kelly were both named to the A-Sun All-Freshman Team,
Pease is second in the conference in assists with 1,282, 12.33 per game. She is also 56th nationally in NCAA Division I. She has been in a unique situation since there was no one on the roster this season to serve as her backup.
"There was a never a doubt in my mind about Jake's ability from the first time I saw her," said Lipscomb coach Brandon Rosenthal. "She has lived up to every ounce of that.
"This is just a little glimpse of what is to come. She is the absolute real deal. As the years go by she is only going to get better and better."
Despite outstanding stats in high school Pease was told by many so-called experts that she did not have what it takes to be a setter on the NCAA Division I level.
"Obviously, that is not the case," Rosenthal said. "This is all a matter of who she is and what I look for in a recruit. Without a back-up she had pressure to perform all of the time. I'm very proud of her. "
Kelly has also been solid with a .272 hitting percentage and averaging almost one block per game (.99). Rosenthal was worried that Pease and Kelly might split the vote for Freshman of the Year.
"Alex was a little more under the radar than Jake in high school and club volleyball," Rosenthal said. "There was never a doubt about Alex with the speed and the energy she plays with. Alex is going to be a force to be reckoned with for the next three years."
Snider, who transferred to the Lady Bisons from the University of Alabama, has led conference in kills and points for most of the season. She is 18th nationally in NCAA Division I in kills per game with 4.94, 509 total. She also has 567 points, 5.50 per game.
"Sarah is one of, if not the top player, in the conference," Rosenthal said. "This was a great award for her. She has been a pretty consistent player throughout the year and only was recognized once as player of the week.
"She has proven that she is that different level player," Rosenthal said. "It is fun to think about what she will be capable of doing next year."
Mullins was second this season in the conference in digs with 597. She also set a new career record in the conference in digs in only three seasons. She is ranked 25th nationally in digs per game with 5.74.
"Ann has proven herself to be a top player," Rosenthal said. "This is a great finishing touch for her.
"The awards don't matter to her. It is all about winning."
That statement applies to Snider, Pease and Kelly as well.
"They are all very competitive," Rosenthal said. "If you threw all four of them into a room I'm not sure which one would come out."