|Volleyball hands out awards|
MOSCOW - Four Idaho volleyball players were honored Sunday afternoon as the team handed out its annual postseason awards.
For the third consecutive year, Allison (Walker) Baker earned the team's Most Valuable Player award. Baker was a first-team All-Western Athletic Conference honoree for the third straight year, and also earned WAC Player of the Week and WAC All-Tournament team honors. The 6-foot-1 outside hitter led the WAC with 4.41 kills per game, and 4.95 points per game in 2012. She finished the year with 23 double-doubles and her 556 kills on the year were the fifth most in a single-season in program history. She also finished her career with 1,382 kills, the seventh most by an Idaho player.
The team's Most Improved Player award went to 6-foot-3 sophomore middle blocker Alyssa Schultz, who ranked second in the WAC with 1.42 blocks per game and fourth with a .340 hitting percentage. After earning WAC All-Freshman team honors in 2011, Schultz was a first-team All-WAC selection in 2012. She had 138 block assists on the season, tying for the fourth most in one season by a Vandal player. Her .340 hitting percentage was the fifth highest by a Vandal in program history, raising her career hitting percentage to .325, the highest in program history.
Senior Janelle Chow was the recipient of the team's Most Inspirational Player award. In her first season at libero Chow tallied 554 digs in 2012, the second most in a season in Idaho history. She raised her career dig total to 1,089, ranking sixth on Idaho's career list. Chow's 39 digs against UC Santa Barbara were the third most in a match by a Vandal player in history, just two shy of the single-match record. Chow also earned WAC All-Tournament team honors, leading Idaho's comeback from the service line as the Vandals faced elimination with a 14-11 fifth-set deficit in the semifinals before pulling out a 16-14 win.
Senior middle blocker Alex Sele won the team's Kathy Clark Scholar Athlete Award. Sele holds a 3.95 GPA and will graduate with her degree in psychology later this month. Sele averaged 1.97 kills and 0.85 blocks per set, and hit .322 on the season, and earned second-team All-WAC honors for the second consecutive season.
The Vandals tied for second in the WAC for the second straight year, and advanced to the program's first WAC championship match. Idaho finished with a 17-14 overall record and a 13-5 WAC mark and beat every WAC team at least once. Idaho's 17 wins in 2012 were the most for the program since it won 19 matches in 2008.