LANCASTER, PA - The Johns Hopkins volleyball team claimed the Coach, Player, and Rookie of the Year Awards for the second straight season, as announced by the Centennial Conference office today. Tim Cole earned Coach of the Year accolades while Elizabeth Wuerstle was named the conference Player of the Year and Natalie Aston earned Rookie of the Year honors.
The Blue Jays had a record-setting season as the team won a program record 18 straight games and have a current 20 game winning streak in conference regular season matches. They also earned the programs' first-ever national ranking on September 26 as they entered the AVCA polls at #24.
For Cole, this is his second straight Coach of the Year honor as he continues to bring the program to new heights. This the second straight season that the team has had a perfect conference regular season record and gone on to win the Centennial Tournament. It also marks the second straight 20-plus win season for JHU.
For Wuerstle, this is her second straight Player of the Year Award, and she becomes just the third repeat winner of the award in Centennial Conference history. Her First Team All-Centennial honor makes her the 13th player to earn the distinction three times and she is the first player in program history to earn the player of the year award twice in their career. The Kennett Square, PA native became the team leader in aces in a match, season and career this year and is leading the NCAA in aces (101) and aces per set (1.11). She also ranks fourth in the conference with a hitting percentage of .289.
Aston becomes the third Blue Jay to earn Rookie of the Year honors, following Sarah Elnozahy (2016) and Jasmine Warmington (2012). She is also the 14th freshman in league history to be named to the conference first team. Aston ranks third in the conference with a hitting percentage of .309 and fourth in blocks per set (0.83). She has 535 assists this season and is averaging 5.82 assists per set, which ranks eighth in the Centennial. The Woodland Hills, CA native is third in the CC with a hitting percentage of .309 and has 117 kills this season.
Joining Aston and Wuerstle on the first team is sophomore Louisa Kishton, who ranks seventh in the league in digs (353) and digs per set (3.84). She is also fifth in hitting percentage (.283) and ninth in kills (268) and kills per set (2.91).
Representing the Blue Jays on the second team is freshman Simone Bliss while senior Kristi Rhead earned Honorable Mention. Bliss currently has 280 kills and is averaging 3.04 kills per set, which ranks sixth and eighth in the CC, respectively. Rhead leads the Centennial in hitting percentage at .331 and is 10th in blocks per set (0.71). She also set a career high with 137 kills this season. Michelle Abt was named to the All-Sportsmanship Team.
This marks the fourth time overall, and third straight season that the Blue Jays have had at least three All-Centennial selections.