Albers, Havili Named AVCA All-Region First Team
LAWRENCE, Kan. – One of the most prolific veteran-rookie duos in the Big 12 Conference this season, University of Kansas senior Chelsea Albers and freshman Ainise Havili were named to the AVCA All-Midwest Region First Team Tuesday.
The Jayhawk pair accounted for two of the 20 Big 12 players recognized with American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) regional honors. Of the 10 total regions, the Big 12’s members reside in the Midwest and Southwest sectors. In each, the AVCA names 14 first team honorees and six more are named to the honorable mention list, where seven of the Big 12’s nine teams were represented. With first-team accolades in tow, Albers and Havili are now eligible for All-America consideration.
“It’s a culmination of Chelsea having a great senior year, but it’s also very indicative of the career she’s had at Kansas,” head coach Ray Bechard said. “It’s also great to see that people are recognizing that Ainise had an outstanding freshman year.”
Making her second-consecutive All-Midwest Region First Team appearance, Albers completed her four years at Kansas as one of the most versatile players in school history. In her senior campaign, Albers was a constant with her career-best marks for kills (343) and digs (316) in a single season. She led the Jayhawks in kills and came in second for digs and blocks (97). In her final match as a Jayhawk, Albers was everywhere against UALR in the first round of the NCAA Tournament as she recorded nine kills, six blocks and an impressive 20 digs.
For her career, Albers finished with 921 kills. Coupled with her 894 digs, Albers is just the seventh Jayhawk in history to post 900-career kills and 800-career digs. A Papillion, Nebraska native, she earned All-Big 12 First Team praise the last two seasons.
Havili was named to the All-Midwest Region First Team in her first opportunity. The Preseason Big 12 Freshman of the Year, Havili came close to earning the same postseason accolade, but instead landed on the Big 12 All-Freshman Team as a unanimous selection.
In her first NCAA Tournament match, Havili tallied a double-double with 54 assists and 13 digs. Her 14 double-doubles were the most by any Big 12 rookie in 2014 and are tied for 10th-most all-time by a Jayhawk in a single season. Her 1,332 assists were the most by any Big 12 setter this year, broke the record for assists by a Jayhawk freshman and rank fifth all-time on KU’s single-season assists list. The Fort Worth, Texas native powered the Jayhawks to 13.79 kills per set and 12.82 assists per set, which ranked second-best in the Big 12.
2014 AWARDS – CHELSEA ALBERS
- AVCA All-Midwest Region First Team (second-consecutive honor)
- All-Big 12 First Team (second-consecutive honor)
- Academic All-Big 12 Second Team (third-consecutive honor)
- Big 12 Preseason Team
- Pioneer Classic MVP
- Villanova Classic All-Tournament Team
- Senior Class Top-30 Candidate
2014 AWARDS – AINISE HAVILI
- AVCA All-Midwest Region First Team
- All-Big 12 Honorable Mention Team
- Big 12 All-Freshman Team
- Big 12 Rookie of the Week (11/10)
- Big 12 Rookie of the Week (10/20)
- Big 12 Rookie of the Week (10/10/14)
- Kansas Invitational All-Tournament Team
- Pioneer Classic All-Tournament Team
- Jayhawk Classic All-Tournament Team
- Big 12 Preseason Freshman of the Year
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