PLYMOUTH, N.H. - Four Plymouth State University women's volleyball players were recognized Tuesday with selections to the 2007 All-Little East Conference Team. The All-LEC Team is voted on by the league's eight head coaches.
Junior Sarah Spears (Meredith, N.H./Inter-Lakes) topped the Panther selections as she was voted Defensive Player of the Year and All-LEC First Team. Three of her teammates were selected to the Second Team - senior Kirsten Willoughby (Plymouth, N.H./Plymouth Regional) and sophomores Eliza Badeau (Foster, R.I.) and Brianna Kleckner (Terryville, Conn). Spears and Willoughby are first- time selections to the all-conference team, while Badeau and Kleckner are repeat choices.
A 5'3" defensive specialist/libero, Spears (right) leads the Little East in digs, recording 529 (5.09 per game). She is also tied for third in the LEC in service aces (0.54 per game). Spears was named to the All-Tournament Team at the Tom Hay Invitational at Springfield College in early October, and she was selected LEC Defensive Player of the Week on both Oct. 8 and Oct. 15.
A 5'9" right side hitter, Willoughby (below left) provided strong play at the net, recording 178 kills (1.65 per game) with a .164 attack percentage. She was also third on the team in blocks with 43.
A 6'0" middle hitter, Badeau (left, middle) was one of the top hitters and blockers in the conference for the second straight year. She came back from an early season injury to lead PSU in hitting percentage (.342) and kills (3.86 per game), ranking second and third in the LEC, respectively categories. She also led the team in blocks (0.92 per game). Badeau was named to the All-Tournament Team twice this year during the regular season, and she was named LEC Offensive Player of the Week three times in four weeks in October.
A 5'4" setter, Kleckner (above, right) ran the Panther offense and ranked second in the LEC in assists with 9.33 per game. She also ranked ninth in the conference in service aces (0.41 per game). She went over the 2,000 mark for career assists earlier this season, just the third player in school history to reach the milestone.
The Panthers, 20-11 overall, is the eighth seed in this week's ECAC New England Tournament, with a first-round match set for Wednesday at top-seeded Brandeis (6:00 p.m.)
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