3 Cyclones Earn Volleyball All-American Honors - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

3 Cyclones Earn Volleyball All-American Honors


AMES, Iowa – Junior libero Ashley Mass became the first Iowa State volleyball player to earn first-team American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) accolades when the group announced its 2009 honors Wednesday. Mass was recognized with fellow Cyclones Kaylee Manns (second team) and Victoria Henson (third team).

Mass, a Muskego, Wis. native, became the first libero to garner first-team honors since Minnesota's Paula Gentil in 2004. The only libero to be recognized on the first team, Mass averaged a career-best 5.49 digs to lead the Big 12 and finish 10th nationally. She was even better in Big 12 matches, notching 5.63 digs, but it was her uncanny passing ability that separated the junior from all other liberos in the nation.

A solid performer night-in and night-out, Mass posted double-figure digs in 31 of 32 matches this year. She broke Big 12 records both times ISU faced Baylor, notching 33 digs in a three-set loss in Waco and 42 digs in a five-set win in Ames. The 42 digs topped the 14-year old ISU record previously held by Steph McCannon (41) in 1995.

She was a unanimous selection for Big 12 Libero of the Year, the second such honor of her career, and also became the first libero ever selected to the All-Big 12 First Team. She joined Texas' Destinee Hooker as the only players unanimously picked for the top team. Mass picked up a Big 12-best six defensive player of the week honors this season.

The honor is the second of Mass' career after capturing third-team honors as a sophomore in 2008.

Manns was named All-American for the second year in a row after earning second-team accolades in 2008. The senior setter from Topeka, Kan., ranked third in the nation, dishing out 12.09 assists per set. Manns also proved her worth as an all-around player, digging 3.28 balls per set, while averaging 0.70 kills and 0.49 blocks. She also led the Cyclones with 24 service aces.

Manns leaves Iowa State as the career leader in assists with 5,625 assists, which is third all-time in Big 12 history. Her 1,379 digs leaves her sixth at ISU. She was the first player in Big 12 history to record 5,500 assists, 1,000 digs, 300 kills and 300 blocks in a career.

Manns was a First-Team All-Big 12 pick for the second-straight year. She captured Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week honors once this season.

Henson, a junior outside hitter, picked up third-team honors after being an honorable mention selection in 2008. The Leavenworth, Kan., native was third in the Big 12 with 4.14 kills per set, while hitting .239. For the first time in her career Henson played all rotations on the court, finishing third on the team with 3.03 digs per set. She also averaged 0.57 blocks per set and posted a career-high 14 solo blocks.

Henson was a First-Team All-Big 12 selection for the second year in a row. She garnered three league offensive player of the week awards and was also named AVCA National Player of the Week in November.

Henson wraps up her junior season with 1,253 kills, just 367 shy of becoming the school's career record holder.

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