Dec. 4, 2012
NOTRE DAME, Ind. -
The University of Notre Dame volleyball student-athletes Toni Alugbue and Jeni Houser were each named to the AVCA All-Northeast Region team, the organization announced on Tuesday.
The sophomore duo are two of 14 named to the all-region team and are the first Irish players to be honored since 2009 when Jamel Nicholas, Serinity Phillips and Christina Kaelin earned first team accolades. Junior Andrea McHugh earned honorable mention honors in 2010 and was also named the Northeast Region Freshman of the Year.
Notre Dame now has 43 first team all-region performers and 56 total all-region honorees including second teamers and honorable mention selections.
Alugbue and Houser each turned in sensational years for the Irish, who earned spots in both the BIG EAST and NCAA Championships and won 20 matches for the first time since 2009.
"Getting named all-region is a huge honor for both and I am really proud of them," said head coach Debbie Brown. "The award is indicative of how strong they were for us through out the year. They were a huge part of our offense and success. It is an honor for the program and it is a testament to how well the team did this year."
Houser, a right side hitter, played in all 30 matches for the Irish, starting 24. The Louisville, Ky., native tallied 379 kills for an average of 3.32 per set, and hit an impressive .324 for the year. Houser also was a force at the nets as she blocked 89 hits for an average of 0.78 per set. She was named first team all-BIG EAST after finishing eighth in the league in hitting percentage, ninth in kills per set and 10th in points.
Alugbue, who made the transition from the middle to the outside prior to this season, blossomed on the outside, as she started all 30 matches and proved to be one of the most versatile players on the roster. The Del Aire, Calif., native led the team in kills (30) and kills per set (3.45), was second in digs (272) and digs per set (2.41), was third in service aces (17) and sixth in blocks (68). Alugbue was named first team all-BIG EAST after finishing fifth in the league in kills per set and sixth in points per set.
The duo will now be up for All-America honors that will be announced in the coming weeks.
For complete information on Notre Dame volleyball follow the team on Facebook (Facebook.com/NDVolleyball) or on Twitter (@NDVolleyball).