Volleyball Players Earn Post-Season Honors

November 15, 2010

Several members of the women's volleyball team were honored when the AVCA (American Volleyball Coaches Association) and NEWVA (New England Women's Volleyball Association) announced their post-season honors. Junior Jane Handel (Evanston, Ill.), sophomore Julia Gibbs (Houston, Texas) and senior Lauren Barrett (Medfield, Mass.) all were named to the AVCA New England All-Region team. Barrett and Handel were first-team NEWVA All-New England selection, while Megan Jarchow (Cos Cob, Conn.) was named to the All-Rookie team. Seniors Whitney Bean (Waukee, Iowa) and Barrett were both selected as N.E. Senior All-Stars. Head Coach Sarah Raunecker earned NEWVA Coach of the Year honors. The group helped lead the team to its third NESCAC Championship and first NCAA Tournament win in their second appearance.

Handel was named to the All-Region team for the third straight season. The NESCAC Player of the Year was also a first-team All-NESCAC choice for the second straight season, after being a second-team selection during her first year.  The former NESCAC Rookie of the Year earns Player of the Year honors two seasons later, after honorable mention All-American honors for two years. The team's offensive leader led the team with 3.07 kills/set, was second with 3.84 digs/set, while earning 31 blocks and 40 service aces. Handel was named the NESCAC Player of the Week three times this fall. She is currently third all-time at Middlebury with 1,000 kills and first with 3.39 kills/set.

Joining Handel on the All-Region team was Barrett, who was a first-team All-NESCAC choice this year and a second-team selection a year ago as the team's setter. She is the school's all-time leader in assists with 3,949, with a single-season record of 1,178 this fall. Barrett is also the school's all-time leader with 1,534 service attempts.

Gibbs was also an All-Region choice, after earning second-team All-NESCAC honors. The sophomore earned NESCAC Rookie of the Year honors in '09. The sophomore tied the school's single-season record with 63 service aces this year, leading the team with 63 (.59/set). She was third on the team this season with 2.67 kills/set, had 33 blocks in '10, to go along with 2.64 digs/set.

Jarchow was named to the All-Region rookie team, after earning NESCAC Rookie of the Year honors. She was second on the squad in kills (3.00/set), to go along with 32 blocks in '10. Two  weeks ago, Jarchow led the team with 4.0 kills and a .349 hitting percentage at the NESCAC Championship weekend to earn Player of the Week honors.

Bean ends her career at Middlebury with 322 sets played over her four years. She averaged 1.26 kills/set with a 2.42 hitting percentage this season. She was second on the team with 38 blocks (.51/set), ending her career with 254 total blocks, sixth all-time.

Raunecker earns Coach of the Year honors after earning the same award from the NESCAC for the second time in her 16th season as head coach. She has been involved with the program since its inception, serving as an assistant coach in '94. She owns a career record of 289-167.

In '98, Raunecker led the team to the most wins in school history (26) and its first NCAA Tournament appearance. The previous season, she was named the NESCAC coach of the year after leading the Panthers to their first NESCAC title in '97.