Ahern Earns All-NESCAC
Contact: Matthew Hart
SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. –Lizzie Ahern ’16 of the Amherst College volleyball team earned All-NESCAC honors Wednesday, capping a remarkable rookie season in which the outside hitter ranked third in the conference in kills and sixth in hitting percentage.
One of two NESCAC first-years to receive the award, Ahern joined conference Rookie of the Year Caroline Martin of Connecticut College as a second-team selection. With a 3.18 kills per game average, Ahern trailed only Martin (3.35) and NESCAC Player of the Year Rachel Schroff of Conn. College (3.42) among the league’s top offensive performers.
The Camels took home three of the conference’s four top honors, with Joshua Edmed joining Martin and Schroff as Coach of the Year while Middlebury libero Caitlin Barrett ’13 earned Defensive Player of the Year.
Ahern is the first Amherst rookie to be named to an All-NESCAC squad since the conference began its current two-team format in 2000. The Corte Madera, Calif. native posted double-digit kills in 14 of the Lord Jeffs’ 23 matches this year and all but two NESCAC contests. Showing versatility, she also ranked third on the team in blocks (36) and fifth in digs (88).
The first-year turned in some of her finest performances against the conference’s top competition, posting a season-best 22 kills and hitting .373 while also notching seven digs in Amherst’s hard-fought 3-2 loss to Connecticut College on Oct. 6. The following weekend, she hammered 19 kills in the Jeffs’ 3-2 win over eventual NESCAC champion Middlebury, a match in which she also recorded four blocks. Perhaps her most dominant showing, however, came against Little Three rival Wesleyan on Oct. 5, when the rookie hit .520 with 15 kills in a quick 3-0 win for Amherst.
While the Jeffs were unable to secure a bid to this year’s NCAA Championship, Ahern leads a large group of strong underclasswomen who will return to head coach Sue Everden’s lineup in 2013.