Shelly Sommerfeldt finished her career with 1,221 total kills.
Feb. 2, 2006
SALT LAKE CITY - The University of Utah volleyball team capped off one of its most successful years with its season-ending banquet last week.
The Utes went 23-9 during the season and finished third in the Mountain West Conference with an 11-5 tally. In Utah's wake were victories over No. 17-ranked Santa Clara and a pair of late-season victories over nationally-ranked Brigham Young. Not only did Utah knock off nationally-ranked rivals, but with its season-opening win over Idaho State, veteran head coach Beth Launiere chalked up her 300th career win.
The postseason saw Utah rattle off four straight wins before being ousted by No. 6-ranked Arizona in the NCAA Tournament. Utah entered the Mountain West Conference Tournament as the No. 3 seed and beat Wyoming and Colorado State, both by a 3-0 count. That set up a date with No. 21-ranked BYU. Utah split games one and two with the Cougars in the tournament final. But, Utah easily won games three and four and earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
The Utes hosted the first and second round of the NCAA Tournament, entertaining Utah State, Loyola Marymount and Arizona. Utah posted a 3-0 win over LMU in the first round but fell short to Arizona in the second round, 3-1.
The season didn't go unnoticed as Shelly Sommerfeldt brought home a bevy of awards. She was honorable mention All-America, All-Region, MWC Tournament MVP, All-MWC Tournament and all-conference. Sommerfeldt also etched her name in Utah's career record book, tallying 1,221 career kills.
In addition to Sommerfeldt, Airial Salvo garnered the conference's Freshman of the Year accolade, leading all newcomers in hitting and kills per game.
Team awards also went out to the Ute spikers. As chosen by a team vote, Whitney Webb was named Most Improved, Katie Theurer the Most Inspirational, Danielle Leichliter with Best Defense, and Natalie Miller won the Academic Award. Sommerfeldt garnered team MVP while head coach Beth Launiere selected Leichliter as the recipient of the Coaches Award.
The team also honored its three seniors in Leichliter, Thuerer and Sommerfeldt.
Below is summary of the individual accomplishments for 2005.
Launiere's 300th Career Win
Aug. 26, 2005 vs. Idaho State (3-0)
MVP: Shelly Sommerfeldt Best Defensive: Danielle Leichliter
Academic Award: Natalie Miller
Coaches Award : Danielle Leichliter
Most Improved: Whitney Webb
Most Inspirational: Katie Theurer
Honorable Mention All-America
MWC Freshman of the Year
MWC Tournament MVP
MWC Tournament Setter