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Dec. 19, 2003

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. – University of Virginia fourth-year volleyball players Whitney Ashcraft (Yorktown, Ind./Burris) and Paige Davis (Austin, Texas/Westlake) have been selected to the 2003 VaSID University Division All-State Volleyball First Team. Virginia head coach Melissa Aldrich Shelton has been selected as the VaSID Coach of the Year, while third-year middle Alexis Geocaris (Wilmette, Ill./New Trier) has been named to the second team. Sports Information representatives from schools in Virginia select the VaSID All-State team.

It is the second consecutive year Ashcraft has been named to the VaSID All-State First Team, while Davis was a 2000 VaSID Second Team selection. Shelton earns Coach of the Year honors for the second time in her career as she also garnered the award in 1998. Geocaris is a first-time VaSID All-State pick. UVa led all schools with three players earning VaSID honors.

Ashcraft and Davis both earned 2003 AVCA honorable mention All-America accolades, becoming the first All-Americans in the 25-year history of the Virginia volleyball program. The duo became eligible for All-America consideration after earning AVCA first-team All-East Region honors earlier in December.

Ashcraft, a libero, was a first-team All-ACC selection in 2002 and 2003. She was a two-time regular season tournament MVP in 2003 and led all ACC players in digs (627) and dig per game (5.10). Ashcraft ranks seventh among all Division I players in digs per game in 2003. Her 627 digs this season are the second highest single season total in school history. The three-time team captain is second on UVa’s career digs list with 1,603, which is also seventh on the ACC’s all-time digs list. She twice notched a school record 42 digs in a match this season. Ashcraft set the school mark with 42 digs in a four-game win over Syracuse (September 13) then equaled her impressive school record in a five-game win against North Carolina (November 8). In 2003, she reached double figures in digs in 31 of 34 matches, including the last 17 matches of the season. Ashcraft started all 34 matches and played in all 123 games.

Davis, a rightside/opposite hitter, was a second-team All-ACC pick in 2003. She is only the fourth player in UVa volleyball history to register 1,000 career kills and digs. Davis ranks among Virginia’s all-time leaders in both kills and digs. With 1,432 career digs, Davis is third all-time at UVa, while her 1,107 career digs rank seventh. She is also 10th on Virginia’s career service aces list with 114. Davis, a co-captain in 2003, tallied a career-best 483 kills this season and also possessed a career-high .286 hitting percentage. Her 483 kills are the fourth highest single season total in school history. Davis also recorded 185 digs and a career-best 99 blocks in 2003. Davis was named the MVP of the 2003 Tiger Classic and was also named to two All-Tournament teams. She started all 34 matches this season and played in all 123 games.

Geocaris set career highs while leading UVa in hitting percentage at .322 and in blocks with 151. She was sixth among all ACC players in hitting percentage and fifth in blocks (1.23 per game). Geocaris, who was named MVP of the 2003 National Invitational Tournament, tallied a career-high 331 kills, good for second on the team. She started all 34 matches this season. Geocaris was also named to the 2003 Kentucky Conference Challenge All-Tournament Team.

Shelton was named the VaSID Coach of the Year after leading the Cavaliers to a 25-9 record in 2003, a 16-match improvement over the 2002 season. UVa just missed earning a bid to the 2003 NCAA Volleyball Championship. The 25 victories are the third-highest single season total in school history. Shelton was named the 1998 VaSID Coach of the Year after leading Virginia to a 26-8 record and the school’s first NCAA Tournament appearance.

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