Bricio and Whittingham Named to AVCA All-Pacific South Region Team|
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Dec. 9, 2014
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) announced the 2014 All-Region teams on Tuesday, Dec. 9, and honored USC junior outside hitter Samantha Bricio and sophomore libero Taylor Whittingham on the Pacific South Team. It is the third-career honor for Bricio; the first for Whittingham. Each of the Women of Troy is now eligible to be selected for AVCA All-America honors.
Brigham Young University had the most players honored on the team with three (Amy Boswell, Alexa Gray, and Jennifer Hamson). BYU head coach Shawn Olmstead received the region's Coach of the Year award. USC, Arizona (Madi Kingdon and Penina Snuka), and Loyola Marymount (Litara Keil and Hannah Tedrow) had two players each. LMU also had the region's Freshman of the Year in Sarah Sponcil. Arizona State, CSUN, UCLA, Long Beach State, and Colorado, were each represented on the team with one player.
Bricio, Hamson, and CSUN's Casey Hinger were each three-time selections. The team was made up of six outside hitters, four middle blockers, one opposite hitter, two setters, with Whittingham as the only libero chosen. Whittingham, Snuka, and Boswell were the only three sophomores selected.
USC's duo represents the 51st and 52nd regional certificates for the program since 1990. The Trojans have had eight other players named all-regional honorable mention and boast five regional Freshman of the Year awards including in 2013 (Ebony Nwanebu) and 2012 (Bricio).
With three selections, Bricio becomes just the sixth Trojan to earn all-region honors three times in her career and joins Natalie Hagglund, Alex Jupiter, Emily Adams, April Ross, and Jasmina Marinkovic. Ross and Marinkovic were each four-time award winners.
Bricio led the Pac-12 and was second in the nation in service aces (84) and aces per set (0.70 saps). She became both the USC and Pac-12 career leader for aces in a match against California (Nov. 14) and now has 211 career service aces. Bricio is USC's leading scorer (5.23 pps), which ranks fourth in the Pac-12. She also ranked sixth in the league with 4.28 kills per set. Bricio is a 2013 All-American and received honorable mention status in 2012 as a freshman.
Whittingham was the league's leader in digs (4.97 dps) in 2014 and received the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week award on Dec. 1. She posted 27 matches in double digits for digs including a team-best 14 outings over the 20-dig plateau. Whittingham reached new career marks this season with two 30-dig matches (31 at California, Oct. 22; 33 at Arizona, Nov. 26) and was also a Pac-12 all-academic honorable mention.
The Women of Troy (16-16, 8-12 Pac-12) finished 10th in the conference, but were selected to the program's 24th straight NCAA tournament (32nd all-time). USC defeated Coastal Carolina the first round but fell to site host No. 7 North Carolina in the second round in Chapel Hill, N.C.
For more information on the USC women's volleyball team and a complete schedule, please visit USCTrojans.com and follow @USCWomensVolley on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.