Hudson, six Lady Toppers awarded Sun Belt honors

Travis Hudson/

Elliott Pratt

Six WKU players and coach Travis Hudson were honored by the Sun Belt Conference Wednesday as the league announced its 2012 volleyball awards.

Ashley Potts earned her second straight Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Year award. Potts posted 30 double-digit dig performances. Potts becomes the first player in Sun Belt history to win back-to-back player of the year awards and only the second to win twice.

Potts was honored four times throughout the regular season as Defensive Player of the Week.

Travis Hudson was named Sun Belt Coach of the Year for the fourth time in his 18 year career with WKU. Hudson and the Lady Toppers worked their way up the AVCA polls to their highest ranking in school history at No. 17.

Hudson leads the league in wins among active coaches with 198. He coached the Lady Toppers to a perfect 15-0 conference record, dropping only one set, to Florida International.

Along with Potts, Jordyn Skinner, Melanie Stutsman, and Paige Wessel earned first team All-Conference awards.

Heather Boyan and Noelle Langenkamp earned second team All-Conference spots.

This is Skinner’s third-straight first-team award. She leads the team this year with 310 kills while also posting 305 digs.

Junior Melanie Stutsman notched her third-straight All-Conference award. Her average of 11.13 assists per set ranks 31st in the nation.

Paige Wessel lead the Lady Toppers and the Sun Belt with a .385 hitting percentage.  Her hitting percentage also ranks 21st nationally. Wessel also hit over .400 in 19 different matches.

Heather Boyan led the team with 93 blocks and placed second on the team in kills with 298.

Freshman Noelle Langenkamp’s .392 hitting percentage ranks third in the Sun Belt. Langenkamp becomes the first freshman since Stutsman (2010) to earn All-SBC honors.

WKU becomes the first team in Sun Belt history to place six players on the all-conference team.

The Lady Toppers will begin their tournament play at hopes of defending their Sun Belt title at 5 p.m. Thursday against FIU in Diddle Arena.