Jan. 13, 2012
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) - Senior outside hitter Jekaterina Stepanova's memorable senior season got even better with the announcement of her second All-America honor following Florida State volleyball's historic run. The Riga, Latvia, native has been named a Volleyball Magazine Second-Team All-American.
The award gives Stepanova multiple All-America honors in recognition of her tremendous season in 2011. Stepanova, who was also named an American Volleyball Coaches Association Second-Team All-American on Dec. 14, finished the season with 421 kills, 3.29 kills per set, a .264 hitting percentage, 353 digs and 2.76 digs per set. Her versatile statistics also include 60 blocks.
While her play all season garnered some national attention in the volleyball realm, it was her performance at the regional semifinals and finals against fifth-seeded Purdue and fourth-seeded Iowa State that secured her All-America bid. Stepanova was named the Minneapolis Region MVP after recording 11 kills and 22 digs versus the Boilermakers, followed by a 20-kill performance and a .378 hitting percentage in a five-set thriller over the Cyclones.
The high-flying outside hitter's All-America honor last month allowed her to become just the second FSU volleyball player to earn non-honorable mention All-America status. The program boasts 10 All-Americans, but Stepanova joins former middle blocker Brianna Barry (2009 second-team All-American) as the only members of that group who weren't honorable mention All-Americans.
Throughout the season, Stepanova earned several other honors. She also was named to the All-ACC Team, the AVCA All-East Region Team and was honored as the American Volleyball Scouting Report Global Player of the Year. Adding to her season-long résumé are two AVSR Player of the Week awards, an ACC Co-Player of the Week honor and the FSU Invitational MVP award.
Although her collegiate career on the hard court is over, Stepanova is currently training for the inaugural sand volleyball season at FSU which officially begins on March 3 at UAB. The sand volleyball team's first official match in Tallahassee is against Tulane on March 13. The team will also host an intrasquad Garnet & Gold match on Feb. 26 at noon at the FSU Volleyball sand courts located off Spirit Way.