MELBOURNE, Fla. - Eighteen student-athletes are recognized across three teams as All-Sunshine State Conference for the 2018 season. Voting for the team was conducted among the league's volleyball coaches.
The SSC Player of the Year award goes to Nicole Mattson from Florida Southern College. Mattson, an outside hitter from Oviedo, Florida, becomes the fifth Moccasin to be named Player of the Year and the first since 20001. For the season, Mattson led the league in total attempts (1,686), kills (539), and kills per set (4.61). She was also tied for ninth in digs (423) and 11th in digs per set (3.62).
SSC Volleyball History: ALL-SSC Teams | Players & Coaches of the Year | Conference Champions | National Champions
Barry University's Steve Hendricks and the University of Tampa's Chris Catanach share the 2018 Coach of the Year honor, just as their team's share the league title this season. Hendricks piloted the Buccaneers program to a 28-win regular season and its first conference championship since 2004 (seventh overall). The accolade is the first for Hendricks, sixth for Barry2. Catanach led the Spartans to the program's 26th conference championship and its first title since 2015. Now with 19 SSC Coach of the Year honors to his name, Catanach is tied for most all-time across all league-sponsored sports3.
The outside hitting duo of Katie McKiel and Sorrel Houghton earn first-team honors for the Spartans. McKiel and Houghton have been stride for stride with one another so far this season. McKiel has 424 kills and a .231 kill percentage and Houghton has 412 kills and a .265 kill percentage. The two are fourth and fifth respectively in the SSC in kills. All earning all-conference recognition for the Spartans is Tampa's assist leader Sammy Mueller was voted SSC all-conference second-team honors. For her junior campaign, Mueller has recorded 1,165 assists, averaging 10.04 per set, 4thin the SSC. The Gainesville, Florida native has stated 15 double-doubles on the season with 319 digs.
Amber Rowoldt of Palm Beach Atlantic University wins Freshman of the Year accolades. The Watertown, Wisconsin product is the first Sailfish to win the award. Rowoldt is SSC Top 10 in kills (379) and kills per set (3.38), and also leads her team in both categories.
Barry's Megi Buvinic takes Newcomer of the Year honors. She is the second Buccaneer to win the award since it was established in 20114. The outside hitter from Umag, Croatia is sixth in conference kills per set (3.69), ninth in kills (329), and 19th in digs per set (3.03) this season.
Mattson and Kristina Filimonova of Barry highlight the list repeat all-conference award winners. Both players earned All-SSC First Team honors in 2017 and Mattson was named Second Team in 2016, while Filimonova was the Freshman of the Year that same season. Olivia Roa of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University dons Second Team honors this season following First Team accolades last year. Five First and Second Team honorees this season have earned All-Newcomer Team honors during their careers.
Player of the Year: Nicole Mattson, Florida Southern
Freshman of the Year: Amber Rowoldt, Palm Beach Atlantic
Newcomer of the Year: Megi Buvinic, Barry
Coach of the Year: Steve Hendricks, Barry & Chris Catanach, Tampa
|OH||Nicole Mattson^#||Florida Southern||Sr.||Oviedo, Florida|
|OH||Katie Mckiel*||Tampa||So.||Colorado Springs, Colorado|
|OH||Megi Buvinic||Barry||Jr.||Umag, Croatia|
|OH/MB||Kristina Filimonova^Δ*||Barry||Jr.||Moscow, Russia|
|OH||Sorrel Houghton~||Tampa||So.||Osteen, Florida|
|S/RS||Molly Burkhardt||Palm Beach Atlantic||Sr.||St. Augustine, Florida|
|L||Audren Rose||Barry||Jr.||Duque De Caxias, Brazil|
|OH||Erika Barbour||Embry-Riddle||Sr.||Albuquerque, New Mexico|
|MB||Annabella Arcari*||Saint Leo||Jr.||Shelby Township, Mich.|
|OH||Sonja Udovcic~||Lynn||Jr.||Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina|
|MB||Rachael Martin||Florida Southern||So.||Modesto, California|
|S||Sammy Mueller||Tampa||Jr.||Gainesville, Florida|
|MB||Anastasiia Samokhvalova||Barry||So.||Moscow, Russia|
|L||Olivia Roa^||Embry-Riddle||Jr.||Port Orange, Florida|
|OH||Megi Buvinic||Barry||Jr.||Umag, Croatia|
|OH||Amber Rowoldt||Palm Beach Atlantic||Fr.||Watertown, Wisconsin|
|L||Audren Rose||Barry||Jr.||Deque de Caxias, Brazil|
|S||Bianca Pasca||Barry||Fr.||Baia Mare, Romania|
|S||Cassandra Kamien||Saint Leo||Fr.||Orlando, Florida|
|MB||Anilise Fitzi||Saint Leo||Jr.||Walton, New Zealand|
^ = 2017 First Team All-SSC
~ = 2017 All-SSC Newcomer Team
Δ = 2016 Freshman of the Year
# = 2016 Second Team All-SSC
* = 2016 All-SSC Newcomer Team
1Sara Stewart (2000), Brenda Mowell (1998), Kim Crawford (1994), Christi Nash (1992)
2Dave Nichols (2001, 2003-04), Leonid Yelin (1994-95)
319 - Chris Catanach, Tampa Volleyball & George Samuel, Barry Tennis (15 Men's / 4 Women's)
4Jaeda Allen (2016)
52018 is the first year since the Newcomer of the Year award was established in 2011 where Player, Newcomer, and Freshman of the Year have been from different institutions.