2017 UAA VOLLEYBALL SEASON IN REVIEW...

BRIEF SEASON RECAP: The Seawolves earned their program-record fifth straight NCAA Tournament berth in 2017, posting a 19-11 overall record and tying for third in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference at 14-6 ... UAA posted victories over three ranked teams and suffered six of its 11 setbacks vs. ranked clubs ... along with honorable mention All-America honors for Jr. OH Leah Swiss and All-West Region honors for Sr. L Keala Kaio-Perez, UAA also produced the GNAC co-Newcomer of the Year in Jr. MB Tara Melton and the GNAC Freshman of the Year in setter Casey Davenport.

UAA 2017 STARTERS
S—Casey Davenport, 5-6, Fr. (6.84 aps, 2.32 dps, 0.52 kps, .212 att%)
MB—Vanessa Hayes, 5-11, So. (1.67 kps, .259 att%, 0.81 bps, 0.22 ace/set)
MB—Tara Melton, 6-0, Jr. (1.40 kps, .203 att%, 1.02 bps)
OH—Leah Swiss, 6-0, Jr. (3.23 kps, .207 att%, 2.79 dps, 0.45 bps, 0.47 ace/set)
OH—Chrisalyn Johnson, 5-9, Jr. (3.05 kps, .159 att%, 2.40 dps, 0.45 bps, 0.26 ace/set)
RS—Anais Vargas, 5-10, Sr. (0.86 kps, .074 att%, 0.37 bps)
L—Keala Kaio-Perez, 5-7, Sr. (5.29 dps, 0.46 ace/set, 0.95 asst/set)

SEAWOLF NCAA HISTORY: The Seawolves earned their deepest NCAA Tournament run by making the 2016 National Title Match and winning multiple matches for the first time that year ... in 2017, UAA made its program-record fifth straight NCAA appearance and eighth in nine seasons ... this year marked UAA's 10th overall NCAA Tournament trip (1989, 1990, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016), with its overall record at 7-10 after the first-round loss to 2nd-seeded Western Washington; UAA had won two straight First Round matches after losing four in a row between 2010-14 ... the Seawolves were a No. 2 seed in 2014 and earned the No. 1 seed in 2015 and 2016 – the program’s three best seedings ever … UAA was the No. 5 seed in 2009 when it earned its first NCAA win with a 5-set 1st Round victory over Hawaii-Hilo in San Bernardino, Calif.

TEAM NOTES:
The Seawolves clinched a winning record for the 10th straight season, extending the program record that began with Chris Green's arrival at UAA in 2008 ... UAA led the GNAC in aces per set (1.74) and forged top-70 national ranks in aces per set (42nd) and digs per set (39th, 18.15) and blocks per set (70th, 2.06) ... UAA went 3-6 against AVCA Top 25 teams this year and is now 18-11 against ranked teams since 2014 ... UAA is 28-38 against ranked opponents under Green, after having lost 32 straight prior to his arrival in 2008... the Seawolves are 50-10 at the Alaska Airlines Center since its opening in Sept. 2014 and 96-21 at home since 2009 ... the loss at NNU on Sept. 28 ended a pair of program records at 16 straight road wins and 18 straight GNAC road wins; UAA's last GNAC road loss had been Oct. 8, 2015 at NNU... the season-opening loss to UCSD snapped a 26-match win streak in the month of September, dating back to Sept. 25, 2014.

A HOWL LOTTA LOVE: UAA led NCAA Div. II Volleyball in attendance for the third straight season as its final 2017 average of 1,075 fans per game far outranked runner-up Nebraska Kearney (884) ... the Seawolves also boasted five of the top 20 single-match attendance figures in the nation, with the 1,415 for the SPU match ranking sixth.

2017 NCAA Div. II Average Attendance
Rk Team                      Avg Matches
1. Alaska Anchorage        1,075      14
2. Nebraska Kearney          884      20
3. Southwest Minnesota St.   873      13
4. Angelo State              752      14
5. Minnesota Duluth          750      11
6. Western Washington        694      10
7. Colorado Mesa             688       9
8. Concordia-St. Paul        639      13
9. Northwest Nazarene        619      14
10. Northwestern Oklahoma    608      11

2017 NCAA Div. II Volleyball Top Single-Match Attendances
Rk Teams                         Date  Att
1. Neb. Kearney vs Cent. Okla.   11/4  2,063
2. SW Minn. St. vs Minn. Duluth  9/30  1,662
3. NW Nazarene vs MSU Billings   11/9  1,602
4. Neb. Kearney vs Ft. Hays St.  10/24 1,537
5. Ark. Tech vs Ouachita Bapt.   11/9  1,492
6. UAA vs Seattle Pacific        9/23  1,415
10. UAA vs Concordia-Portland    11/11 1,375
12. UAA vs Central Washington    10/26 1,347
17. UAA vs NW Nazarene           10/28 1,268
20. UAA vs Alaska Fairbanks      11/14 1,238

SWISS AIR: Now a 3-time First Team All-GNAC honoree, Jr. OH Leah Swiss started the year with all-tourney honors at the Seaside Invitational and was UAA's most productive all-around performer throughout the year with 3.40 kills per set, 2.84 digs per set and a 0.43 aces per set, capturing honorable mention All-America recognition from both coaches and SIDs ... the CoSIDA Academic All-District and two-time Academic All-GNAC honoree has registered at least nine kills in 58 of the last 67 matches, including a UAA season-high 25 kills in the win over No. 10 Northwest Nazarene ... in the GNAC stats, Swiss finished 2nd in aces per set, 9th in kills per set and 6th in points per set (4.09), recording a team-best 16 double-doubles ... the former local Dimond High star continued to move up UAA's career lists each week, rising to No. 2 in aces (143), No. 4 in kills (1,172), No. 13 in digs (1,002) and No. 5 in victories (81) in three seasons; her career average ranks are 7th in kills per set (3.19), 20th in attack pct. (.227) and 4th in aces per set (0.39) ... Swiss owns 37 career double-doubles after ending 2017 with nine in the last 11 matches.

HOLLAH FOR 'ALA: Sr. L Keala Kaio-Perez – known to her teammates as 'Ala' – has been UAA's libero in every set this year, becoming the first player in program history with at least 50 aces and 500 digs in a season ... the Waimanalo, Hawaii (Kailua HS) native and Western Nebraska CC transfer also became the first Seawolf libero to earn either All-West Region or First Team All-GNAC honors since the position was added to college volleyball in 2002, leading the GNAC with 0.47 aces per set and ranking 2nd in the league with 5.37 digs per set ... since being rewarded with the GNAC Defensive Player of the Week honor for her effort in the home wins over Saint Martin's and Seattle Pacific in late September, Kaio-Perez has averaged 6.01 digs per set, boosted by career highs of 36 digs in both matches against Western Washington, 31 in the win over No. 25 Central Washington and 30 in the NCAA loss to WWU ... she had five efforts of at least 30 digs and 14 matches with at least 20 digs this year, returning from and ACL injury suffered in Sept. 2016 ... Kaio-Perez posted at least 15 digs in all but two matches this season, while her 0.98 assists per set were tops on UAA among non-setters.

C.J. SPIKE IT: Jr. OH Chrisalyn Johnson raised her play after the calendar turned to October, recording double-doubles in 11 of the last15 matches, and capturing both GNAC Offensive Player of the Week and AVCA DII National Player of the Week honors for her efforts in home wins Central Washington and Northwest Nazarene ... in addition to her career-high 24 kills in the win over No. 25 CWU, the former Dimond High star had efforts of 16 kills and a season-high 18 digs against No. 10 NNU, 17 kills, 15 digs and 5 blocks at Concordia-Portland, and 16 kills and 16 digs in NCAA Tournament loss to No. 2 WWU ... an All-NCAA Tournament Team performer at the 2016 Elite Eight, Johnson earned honorable mention All-GNAC this season, ranking 12th in the GNAC with 3.05 kills per set and 3.55 points per set, plus 16th in aces per set (0.25) ... Johnson topped 20 kills on three occasions this year and has accounted for at least seven kills in 59 of the last 67 matches, including 41 times in double figures ... Johnson's career 2.95 kills per set rank 9th on the UAA list, while her 786 total kills already rank 14th, despite playing only a handful of sets her freshman season.

DEPENDABLE DUO: Alongside their veterans outside hitters, the Seawolves had two other players – Jr. DS/RS Taylor Noga and So. MB Vanessa Hayes – who have combined to play in all but one set over the last two seasons ... Noga has played in 359 of 364 sets in her career and 264 consecutive sets since Dec. 2015, ranking as the 7th-winningest player (80 victories) in program history ... the former East Anchorage High standout tallied double-digit digs in nine matches this year, including five straight from Oct. 7-21, with 16 at Concordia-Portland, 17 in the win over No. 10 NW Nazarene and a season-high 18 in the 4-set loss at No. 8 Western Washington ... Noga has recorded at least 10 digs 26 times in her career, including a career-high-tying 19 in UAA's 3-1 victory over Palm Beach Atlantic in the 2016 NCAA Semifinals ... meanwhile, after going for no more than 9 kills in her first 54 career matches, Hayes bolstered her offensive reputation with double-figure kills in four of the last 13 contests, including a pair of 13-kill showings in the wins at Concordia and Western Oregon ... with at least four kills in 29 of 30 matches this year, the Salem, Ore. (McNary HS) native led UAA and ranked 12th in the GNAC with a .256 attack percentage, boosted by career-high .600 hitting (7-1-10) in the sweep of Cal State LA and a .545 (7-1-11) performance at UAF ... Hayes has already premiered on UAA's career top 20 lists in multiple categories, ranking 17th in attack pct. (.235), 11th in block assists (206, needs five to move into top 10), and 13th in total blocks (224) ... both Noga (3.55 GPA in civil engineering) and Hayes (3.66 in psychology) were also honored as members of this year's GNAC All-Academic Team.

CASEY DRIVIN' THAT TRAIN: Fr. S Casey Davenport turned up her play a notch during the second half of the season and earned the 2017 GNAC Freshman of the Year award, becoming the fourth Seawolf to gain that accolade since 2012 ... after the Seawolves switched to a '5-1' rotation in early October, Davenport averaged 10.06 assists, 0.94 kills on .223 hitting and 3.34 digs per set ... Davenport dished the most assists by a Seawolf this season with 53 in the 5-set win at Concordia-Portland, and she posted double-digit digs in 11 of the last 15 contests, including 29 against No. 25 Central Washington and 21 at Seattle Pacific ... the Auburn, Wash., native ranked 8th in the overall GNAC stats with 7.25 assists per set and 6th in the GNAC-only stats with 8.56 aps.

MELTON TOGETHER: Jr. MB Tara Melton became the sixth Seawolf in the last 10 years to earn the GNAC Newcomer of the Year award, sharing this year's honor with Simon Fraser's Angelica Kilberg ... since debuting in Green & Gold, Melton has posted at least five kills in 22 of 30 matches, including a career-high 11 kills in the win over No. 25 Central Washington and 10 kills on UAA season-best .692 hitting at Saint Martin's ... a former JC All-American at her hometown Glendale (Ariz.) Community College, Melton led UAA and ranked 10th in the GNAC with 0.97 bocks per set ... she had eight matches with 5-plus blocks, including 10 block assists against Azusa Pacific and 7 block assists in wins over Concordia-Irvine, at MSU Billings and at Seattle Pacific.

GREEN MACHINE: Having led UAA to an unprecedented 10 straight winning seasons, UAA head coach Chris Green (212-83, .719) has established himself as the most successful coach in program history and one of the top mentors in the NCAA Div. II ranks, earning the 2016 AVCA D-II National Coach of the Year award ... a 4-time GNAC Coach of the Year (2009, '13, '15, '16) and 3-time AVCA D-II West Region Coach of the Year (2009, '15, '16), Green has led UAA to NCAA Tournament berths in seven of the last eight seasons, capturing the program’s highest-ever seeds the last three years; in the 28 years before Green’s arrival, the Seawolves made two NCAAs ... UAA has won at an .787 clip (122-33) since the start of the 2013 campaign, including .844 (81-15) in league play ... Green’s UAA teams have produced six All-Americans, five GNAC Players of the Year, six GNAC Newcomers of the Year and four GNAC Freshmen of the Year ... hired in Feb. 2008 as the sixth coach in UAA Volleyball history, Green spent the previous nine seasons (1999-07) as the head coach at Western Nebraska Community College, where he built a powerhouse program. Among his list of accomplishments at WNCC were a 453-55 record, the 2007 NJCAA Div. I national championship, 2006 NJCAA runner-up, and four straight ‘Final 4’ berths ... the Cougars finished in the top 10 at the national tournament in all of Green’s seasons, producing a total of 10 first-team and six second-team All-America certificates ... in 2011, he was inducted into the NJCAA Hall of Fame.

2017 INDIVIDUAL HONORS
Casey Davenport
GNAC Freshman of the Year
Diana Fa'amausili
Preseason All-GNAC Team
Vanessa Hayes
Academic All-GNAC Team
Chrisalyn Johnson
Preseason All-GNAC Team
GNAC Offensive Player of the Week, Oct. 23-29
AVCA NCAA Div. II National Player of the Week, Oct. 23-29
Academic All-GNAC Team
Honorable Mention All-GNAC
Tara Melton
GNAC co-Newcomer of the Year
Taylor Noga
Academic All-GNAC Team
Keala Kaio-Perez
GNAC Defensive Player of the Week, Sept. 18-24
First Team All-GNAC
D2CCA 2nd Team All-West Region
Leah Swiss
GNAC Preseason Player of the Year
Preseason All-GNAC Team
Seaside Invitational All-Tournament Team
Academic All-GNAC Team
CoSIDA Academic All-District Team
First Team All-GNAC (unanimous)
AVCA Honorable Mention All-American
D2CCA Honorable Mention All-American
Anais Vargas
Academic All-GNAC Team