ATHENS, Ohio -- Junior outside hitter Lizzie Stephens (Dallas, Texas) will join redshirt senior outside hitter Jaime Kosiorek (Chagrin Falls, Ohio) and redshirt senior right side hitter Katie Nelson (Regina, Saskatchewan) as Ohio volleyball's team co-captains for the 2018 season, as announced by fifth-year head coach Deane Webb today.
Kosiorek and Nelson are entering their second seasons serving as team co-captains.
"We're proud of Lizzie and the work she has done on and off the court over the last two years," said Webb. "She has grown as a leader throughout her time at Ohio University, and I know she will work hard to lead our team as a captain. Lizzie was pressed into leadership last year due to both captains being out with injuries for most of the season, and that has prepared her for this opportunity. I'm looking forward to seeing what she adds to the leadership that Jaime and Katie are already providing."
Stephens played in all 32 matches and appeared in all 122 sets in her 2017 sophomore season, earning All-Mid-American Conference First Team honors. She led both the team and the MAC and ranked 66th in the country with a career-high 443 kills (3.63 per set), which ranks as the eighth-most in a single season in program history in the rally scoring era. She posted double-digit kills 25 times -- including 20 or more three times. Stephens led both the team and the MAC and ranked fifth in the nation with a career-high 60 service aces, which ranks as the fourth-most overall in program history and most in program history in the rally scoring era. She posted three or more service aces on 10 occasions. Her 0.49 service aces per set led both the team and the MAC and ranked sixth in the country and rank as the most in program history in the rally scoring era. Stephens led the team and ranked second in the MAC with a career-high 527.5 points (4.32 per set), which ranks as the ninth-most in program history in the rally scoring era. She posted 20 or more points 10 times. Stephens also ranked second on the team with a career-high 320 digs (2.62 per set) and posted double-digit digs 15 times -- including 20 or more two times. In the classroom, she garnered MAC Commissioner's Award and MAC Honor Roll distinction and earned both Fall and Spring Athletics Director Honor Roll selection.
For her career, Stephens has appeared in 45 matches and 148 sets. Her 0.43 service aces per set rank first in program history in the rally scoring era while her 3.45 kills per set rank fifth in program history in the rally scoring era.
"It's an honor to be named a leader for such a great program," said Stephens. "Getting to be alongside Jaime and Katie for their senior year is exciting and a great learning experience for the future. I can't wait to help lead this team to a championship season."
In addition to Kosiorek, Nelson and Stephens serving as team co-captains, junior libero/defensive specialist Meredith Howe (Grand Rapids, Mich.) enters her second season serving as the program's second-ever academic captain.
The 2018 regular season begins for Ohio this weekend in Columbus. The Bobcats will make the drive up U.S. Route 33 to compete in the Sports Imports Classic hosted by in-state rival Ohio State. Ohio matches up with Texas A&M on Friday (Aug. 24) at 4 p.m., then takes on the host Buckeyes at 12:30 p.m. and Albany at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday (Aug. 25). Jake Hromada, 'The Voice of Ohio Volleyball', and Gabe Genovesi will have the call of the action on OhioBobcats.com via Stretch Internet's GameCentral.