Central Connecticut volleyball head coach Linda Sagnelli was named the Northeast Conference Coach of the Year and four student-athletes earned all-conference honors it was announced on Thursday night at the pre-tournament banquet held in Brooklyn, NY, on the eve of the championship tournament. Seniors Lindsey Massicotte and Maddie Smith and sophomores Madelyn Kaprelyan and Morgan Woycik earned Second Team All-NEC honors.
The Blue Devils are the three seed for the tournament and will face second-seeded Bryant at 6 p.m. on Friday night.
Sagnelli guided the Blue Devils to an 18-7 overall record and a share of the NEC regular-season title with an 11-3 mark in her 18th season at the helm of the program. The Blue Devils earned a share of the regular-season title for the first time since 2003. It is the fourth Coach of the Year honor for Sagnelli, who who has won 293 games at Central and 419 overall. Sagnelli's team has also been honored with the AVCA Team Academic Award for the past 11 years.
Massicotte has stepped into the libero role for CCSU as a senior and helped lead one of the league's best defenses. She is averaging 5.34 digs/set and ranks second on the single-season list with 534 digs. She has broken the program's single-match record three times this season, including a 46-dig outing at Saint Francis U, which ranks as the seventh-highest single-match total in NCAA history.
Smith is the NEC leader in blocks/set at 1.46 and is hitting a league-best .399. She's a two-time NEC Player of the Week and also a Defensive Player of the Week this season. She matched a CCSU record with 14 total blocks at Sacred Heart. She was named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District I First Team it was announced earlier Thursday.
Kaprelyan has emerged as a sophomore and led CCSU with 256 kills. She had a career-high 17 kills against Lehigh this year and finished the season averaging 2.61 kills/set to go with 0.79 blocks and 0.52 digs.
Woycik earned All-NEC 2nd Team honors a season after being named the NEC Rookie of the Year. She averaged 2.10 kills and 0.63 blocks/set as a sophomore and had eight double-digit block matches.
Central opens play at the NEC Tournament against Bryant on Friday night. The action will be available at NECFrontRow.com.