By Adam Samson/Sports Information Director
ST. LOUIS – Two members of the Stephens College volleyball team earned 2014 All-American Midwest Conference honors, the league announced Saturday following the championship match between top-seeded Park and Missouri Baptist. Middle hitter Kerri Kircher and setter Samantha Phegley both earned honorable mention, marking the first time in program history that more than one Star has received All-AMC accolades.
Following a productive freshman campaign in 2013, Kerri Kircher stepped up in a big way this year for the Stars. The sophomore sensation recorded double-digit kills in 11 matches this year, including five that came in conference play. She was the Stars’ top offensive weapon this season averaging 2.45 kills preset for 252 total kills. On top of being the strongest hitter, Kircher also led the team by a large margin in blocks. The Richmond, Ind., native was credited with the second-most solo blocks (42) in the AMC, while also contributing 54 block assists.
Samantha Phegley, the only senior on the Stars’ 2014 squad proved to be one of the most versatile players. In addition to her leadership skills, Phegley led Stephens in assists as the team’s primary setter and finished the year second in digs (222) and kills (179) and third in blocks (44). The West Plains, Mo., product transferred into Stephens last year and made an immediate impact for head coach Rose Obunaga. In two years with the Stars, she totaled more than 1200 assists, 450 digs and 250 kills.
Prior to the 2014 AMC Volleyball Tournament Quarterfinal matchup, Kircher and Phegley were also honored for their work in the classroom with AMC Academic All-Conference honors. Joining the All-Conference honorees were Taylor Edwards, Madison Reale, Yonne Nasimiyu and Emily Manczuk. To be eligible, a student-athlete must be in his/her second term of attendance at the institution and have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) as defined by the nominating institution.
Stephens ended the 2014 season with a 13-17 overall record and 5-7 in the American Midwest Conference. The five wins in league play is a new program best, while the 13 wins is the most in a single season since 2010 when the team went 16-20.
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