Seniors Jordyn Poulter and Ali Bastianelli and junior Jacqueline Quade collected American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-American honors, the organization announced on Wednesday (December 12), with Poulter and Quade earning First-Team accolades and Bastianelli named to the Third-Team.
This is the third-straight AVCA All-America honor for the senior duo, with the pair being named honorable mention as sophomores and third-teamers a season ago, with Quade collecting her first All-America accolades in her career.
It is the first time in program history that Illinois has had multiple first-team honors in a season, with Poulter and Quade representing the sixth and seventh Illini players to earn first-team accolades. The three honorees also marks the second-most All-America accolades in program history, tying 2010’s three honorees and coming one short of 2009’s four selections.
The trio helped lead the Illini to the program’s fourth-ever appearance in the NCAA National Semifinals over the weekend and were named to the NCAA Champaign Regional All-Region Team for their efforts, with Poulter also named the Regional’s Most Outstanding Player. Three of the most decorated Illini, Poulter, Bastianelli and Quade also garnered AVCA All-Northeast Region honors and were unanimous selections to the All-Big Ten First-Team earlier this season, with Poulter also being named the AVCA Northeast Region’s Player of the Year and Big Ten Co-Setter of the Year.
A Senior CLASS Award finalist and the first-ever Illini to earn Setter of the Year accolades, Poulter was named to the Preseason All-Big Ten Team and collected five Big Ten Setter of the Week accolades over the course of the season. A CoSIDA Academic All-District First-Team, Poulter ranks third all-time in program history with 5,110 career assists and became just the third Illini to reach the 5,000 assists milestone, as well as the first Illini setter to reach 400 career blocks and 1,000 digs.
The senior setter has dished out 1,475 assists on the season for a 11.61 helpers per set as Illinois ranks ninth in the nation with a .283 team hitting percentage. Poulter also ranks second on the team with 317 digs for a 2.50 digs per set and 35 service aces and is third with 109 total blocks, while totaling 100 kills on a .357 attack clip. She upped her game in league play, posting a 11.77 assists per set average, while also ranking in a tie for ninth with 21 aces.
Having a breakout season in her first year as a six-rotation player, Quade has paced the Illini offense with a 4.19 kills per set mark on a .267 hitting percentage, while totaling 594.5 points on the season to rank 10th in the nation for a 4.68 points per set average. The MVP of the 2018 B1G/Pac-12 Challenge earlier this season, Quade has also registered 244 digs, 62 blocks and 30 service aces on the season. She owns eight double-doubles on the season, as well as registered nine 20-kill matches.
The top blocker in program history, Bastianelli is the Illinois career leader in total blocks and block assists, as well as the Big Ten’s block assists leader and became the first-ever Illini and third-ever Big Ten player to reach 700 career blocks. With 745 total blocks in her career, Bastianelli ranks second in the Big Ten with only Penn State’s Lauren Cacciamani (1996-99) in front of her with 767 blocks. She was named Preseason All-Big Ten at the start of the season and collected CoSIDA Acacemic All-District Second-Team accolades earlier this year.
A Senior CLASS Award finalist, Bastianelli ranks 19th in the nation and second in the league with a 1.40 blocks per set average and is seventh in the NCAA and second in the Big Ten with 178 blocks on the season. Along with her defensive prowess, Bastianelli’s offensive side of the game has blossomed with a 2.30 kills per set average on a .352 hitting percentage.