The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) announced today that SUNY Oneonta was among the record 1,125 teams that earned the AVCA Team Academic Award for the 2018-2019 season. This number breaks the previous year’s total of 977 to set an all-time high.

The Red Dragons are being recognized for the third time in program history and first since 2017. The Red Dragons had a cumulative team GPA of 3.49 this past year, which includes both the fall and spring semesters. Leading the squad of 15 student athletes was rising senior Gillian Stieglitz who achieved a perfect 4.0 for both semesters as a Business Economics major.

The award, which was initiated in the 1992-93 academic year, honors collegiate and high school volleyball teams that displayed excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team grade-point average on a 4.0 scale or a 4.10 cumulative team GPA on a 5.0 scale.

Girls high school led the way with 444 recipients, an increase of 86 over last year. NCAA Division I leaped ahead of NCAA Division III to bring in the second-most recipients adding 25 programs from a year ago for a total of 189. NCAA Division III was third with 175 (+2) while NCAA Division II was next with 141 (+13). One of the fastest growing sectors for this award is high school boys/collegiate men, notching a +10 increase for a total of 62 honorees. Collegiate beach is another fast-growing category with that area of the sport nearly doubling last year’s total from 22 to 41.

Over 1,000 different schools have earned the award in the program’s 25-year history, with exactly 9,586 awards been given out in total.

Oneonta finished the 2018 season with an overall record of 14-17 while finishing with a record of 3-6 in the SUNYAC. The Red Dragons open the 2019 season on Friday, Aug. 30 versus SUNY Canton at the SUNY Cortland Classic.