Dec. 13, 2006
COLUMBIA, S.C. — Senior outside hitter Shonda Cole from the South Carolina volleyball team was named an honorable mention All-American by the American Volleyball Coaches Association, the organization announced Wednesday afternoon.
2006 was a record-breaking season for Cole, as she blasted 703 kills to shatter the previous school record by 150. She became just the 14th player in NCAA history to reach the 700-kill plateau since rally scoring was adopted in 2001. Her 5.76 kills per game beat the previous school standard by 1.54, and she spent the entire year ranked among the top four nationally in the category. Cole also set a USC record for attacks with 1,541 to surpass the previous mark by 203.
While setting three school records for a season, Cole also found time to rewrite the records book for kills in three-, four- and five-game matches. In South Carolina’s second contest of the year, she tallied 37 kills versus TCU in a five-gamer, which was five more than the previous high. Cole gave an unforgettable performance a few weeks later when the Gamecocks toppled then-No. 6 Florida with 35 kills in a 3-1 win. In November, she set the record for three games when she ripped 27 against Georgia.
The Kings Mountain, N.C., native complied numerous honors during the year. Cole was named SEC Offensive Player of the Week three times while becoming the first South Carolina player to snag AVCA National Player of the Week accolades. Following the regular season, Cole made the All-SEC First Team, giving her all-conference praise for the third straight year, and she was an AVCA All-South Region pick. She also made the all-tournament teams at the TCU Molten/La Quinta Invitational, Big Orange Bash and Gamecock Invitational. Additionally, Cole received MVP honors at Clemson’s Big Orange Bash for leading USC to a 4-0 record at the tournament.
Cole wrapped up her career at Carolina becoming the school’s all-time leader in attacks (4,181) and kills per game (4.26). Her 1,775 kills rank second, and she finished No. 10 in total blocks with 305. Cole also became the first player in school history to average at least 4.00 kills per game for three seasons.