Three Sooner Volleyball Players Earn Big 12 Recognition

Monday, November 26th 2012, 5:14 pm
By: News 9

The University of Oklahoma volleyball team had three Sooners earn All-Big 12 postseason recognition. Junior middle blocker Sallie McLaurin was named to the All-Big 12 First Team, while a pair of freshmen - Julia Doyle and Kierra Holst - were named to the All-Freshman Team.

It is the fifth postseason honor for McLaurin who was named the 2011 Defensive Player of the Year and selected to the honorable mention All-Big 12 team last season. In 2010, she was awarded Big 12 Freshman of the Year and named to the Big 12 All-Freshman team following her rookie season.

Additionally, she was one of seven players unanimously selected for the First Team, joining Kristen Hahn and Victoria Hurtt (Iowa State), Caroline Jarmoc (Kansas), Kaitlynn Pelger (Kansas State) and Haley Eckerman and Bailey Webster (Texas).

McLaurin concluded the regular season leading the Sooners in six separate categories: kills (309), hitting percentage (.370), solo blocks (20), block assists (132), total blocks (152) and points (395.0).

Within Conference play, McLaurin finished the regular season second in the Big 12 in two separate categories - hitting percentage (.370) and blocks per set (1.41). Additionally she finished in the top-10 in two other categories - points per set (3.66, 7th) and kills per set (2.86, 10th).

Oklahoma joined Iowa State with two players selected to the All-Freshman Team with Doyle and Holst.

Doyle, who has played a leading role on the Sooners squad as a freshman setter, has been a consistent force throughout her rookie campaign leading the Sooners in assists every match, and adding eight double-double performances and eight 40-plus assist matches to her name in 2012.

She was a three-time Rookie of the Week selection, which matched a program record set by McLaurin in 2010 (Nov. 1, Oct. 18, Oct. 12). Doyle totaled 1,025 assists throughout the regular season and added 84 kills, 235 digs and 49 total blocks (5 BS-44 BA).

Showcasing her versatility on both sides of the court, Doyle has been an advantage for the Sooners behind the service line with a team-leading 43 service aces - a season-best performance for any OU volleyball player since Barker last totaled 30 in 2008. With the total, she finished the season third in the Big 12, averaging .40 aces per set to lead all freshmen.

In addition to her freshmen-leading serving performance, Doyle led all Big-12 freshmen and was sixth in the conference averaging 9.49 assists per set.

Holst was fourth on the team and led all OU freshmen with 205 kills (1.90 k/s) and 72 total blocks (10 BS-62 BA). She was just one of three Sooners to total over 50 total blocks - joining McLaurin and senior outside hitter Morgan Reynolds - and one of two to reach 10 or more solo blocks.

The Sooners earned their fourth-straight bid to the NCAA Volleyball Championship Sunday afternoon and will head to Provo, Utah, on Friday evening at 6 p.m. CT to take on Arizona State at BYU's Smith Fieldhouse. No. 12 national seed BYU is the host and faces New Mexico State in the second first round match Friday night at 8 p.m. CT.

The winners of Friday's matches will play the second-round match on Saturday, Dec. 1 at 8 p.m. CT, where the winner will advance to the Omaha Regional at the CenturyLink Center on Dec. 7.