From UH tonight
Senior middle Taylor Averill, Rainbow Wahine basketball player Shawna-Lei Kueh and Rainbow Wahine diver Genevieve Bradley were the recipients of the 2015 Jack Bonham Award in recognition of their outstanding performances on and off the playing field. The announcement was made Tuesday night at ‘Ahahui Koa ‘Ānuenue’s H Awards at the Stan Sheriff Center.
The award is given annually to the top male and female senior student-athlete who “best exemplifies the ideals for which Jack Bonham stood for in the areas of athletic excellence, academic achievement, public service, leadership and character.”
The four-year letterman is considered one of the best middle blockers in the country and among the nation’s leaders in hitting percentage (.491) and blocking (1.31 per set). He was recognized twice this season as the MPSF’s Player of the Week and is a serious candidate for the National Player of the Year award.
He is the first men’s volleyball player to win the award since libero Alfee Reft in 2006. Other men’s volleyball players honored were Costas Theocharidis (2003), Naveh Milo (1998) and Jason Olive (1995).
Averill has led the Rainbow Warriors to their best season in years. UH attained its first No. 1 national ranking since 2004, its longest win streak (16) since 2006, its most wins (24) since 2003, and its first trip to the MPSF semifinals since 2010. Averill and the ’Bows are also trying to reach the program’s first NCAA Championship since 2002.
“Taylor has excelled in all three areas this award represents – he is an exceptional student, an All-American middle blocker, and is tremendously active in our community,” head coach Charlie Wade said. “He’s not only our team’s top scholar-athlete but he has one of the highest GPAs in the department for the past two years. He’s a first-team All-American and national player of the year caliber. He volunteers for various events – singing Christmas carols to the elderly, reading days at elementary schools. I haven’t been around a better representative for the Jack Bonham Award than Taylor Averill.”