The Irvine Valley women's beach volleyball team was honored by the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) with a Team Academic Award for the 2018-19 season.
The award, which was initiated in the 1992-93 academic year, honors collegiate and high school volleyball teams that displayed excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team grade-point average on a 4.0 scale.
In 2018-19, a record 1,127 teams received an AVCA Team Academic Award, breaking the previous record of 977 set last year. Click here to see the complete AVCA release.
The AVCA Team Academic Award is the single largest award offered by quantity of schools, players and coaches honored. Since the 2000-2001 season, the number of recipients has increased every single year but two, while more than doubling the total over the last eight academic years. Since the award's inception in 1993, the amount of award winners has increased from 62 to its current number of 1,126.
To see the full list – click here
On the sand, Irvine Valley ranked third in the state in the final AVCA two-year Poll of the season that was released at the end of the 2019 campaign.
The Lasers finished tied for third at the California Community College Athletic Association State Championship at the Elite Athlete Training Center in Chula Vista.
Irvine Valley ended the year with a record of 17-8 overall and won the Orange Empire Conference with a mark of 10-0.
IVC ended up going 15-1 against community college opponents. That one defeat came at the hands of Long Beach City, which beat Irvine Valley and moved on from pool play at the state championship.
Irvine Valley also had four pairs reach the state individual event championship - sophomore Renata Bath and freshman Lea Kruse, freshmen Anna Unke and Gabriela Griego, sophomores Alyssa Vortouni and Emilie Austin and freshmen Aliaina Gendale and Kendall Nolan reached the state event.
Bath and Kruse and Unke and Griego each made the final day on Saturay of the two-day pairs tournament. Bath and Kruse battled and ended up finishing tied for third overall under the direction of head coach Tom Pestolesi.
The AVCA, with its headquarters in Lexington, Ky., is managed by Associations International. The mission of the AVCA is to advance the sport of volleyball with AVCA coaches at the epicenter of leadership, advocacy, and professional development. With a membership of over 8,000 and counting, the AVCA provides a professional network for those individuals and companies dedicated to enhancing and promoting the sport. Members include collegiate, high school, club, youth, and Olympic coaches, as well as volleyball club directors. The AVCA provides education to volleyball coaches, recognition of elite players and coaches, promotion of volleyball competitions throughout the world, and networking opportunities for volleyball products and services providers. Further information is available at www.avca.org.