Landmark Volleyball Awards Announced

Pictured - Player of the Year, Sydney Portale
Pictured - Player of the Year, Sydney Portale

TOWSON, Md. – Susquehanna junior Sydney Portale earned Landmark Player of the Year honors, the second River Hawk to earn the award. Teammates Lizzie Herestofa and Rosina Esposito were named the Specialist and Rookie of the Year respectively. River Hawk head coach Kuuipo Tom was named Coach of the Year for a third time.

Portale led the conference with a .319 hitting percentage, finished second in kills (426), third in kills per set (3.46), and seventh in total blocks with 77. She helped the River Hawks to an impressive 31-6 record, which included a program first in beating Juniata in a regular season match and clinching the No. 1 seed in the Landmark Conference Volleyball Championship. Tuesday's honor marks the first time Portale has earned First Team honors.

Herestofa is the third River Hawk to earn Specialist of the Year honors, joining Sarah Paluck who won the award in 2013 and 2015. The junior ranked third in the conference with 520 kills. Tuesday's honor is the first time Herestofa has earned First Team accolades.

Esposito had a breakout season during her rookie campaign. The outside hitter led the league in kills (442), kills per set (3.68), and service aces per set (0.51). She is the second River Hawk to earn Rookie of the Year status, joining Erin Byrne (2013).

Tom earned his third Coach of the Year honors after guiding the River Hawks to a 31-6 overall record, a perfect 6-0 mark in conference play, and SU's second ever appearance in the NCAA Division III Volleyball Tournament.

Five players represented Susquehanna on the All-Landmark teams, while Juniata College also nabbed five selections. Elizabethtown College had three selections, followed by Catholic University with two and The University of Scranton with one.


Player of the Year Specialist of the Year Rookie of the Year Coach of the Year
Sydney Portale
Lizzie Herestofa
Rosina Esposito

Kuuipo Tom

The 2019 Landmark Volleyball All-Conference Teams:

First Team    Second Team
Outside Hitter/Opposite         Outside Hitter/Opposite      
Patricia Martinez & Catholic   Jr. Guaynabo, Puerto Rico   Bryanna Miller Elizabethtown   Fr. Lancaster, Pa
Victoria Taylor & Juniata   Jr. Middletown, Del.   Elle Shatto Elizabethtown   Sr. Sykesville, Md.
Rosina Esposito Susquehanna   Fr. Coraopolis, PA    Morgan Edwards & Juniata   Sr. Lancaster, Pa.
Sydney Portale Susquehanna   Jr. Glen Mills, Pa.   Carah Vitkus Scranton   Fr. Mahopac, N.Y.  
Middle Hitter           Middle Hitter        
Dejia Danhi Juniata   Sr. Ashburn, Va.   Isabelle Cooper Catholic   Sr. Dunmore, Pa.
Emma Davis Juniata   Fr. East Berlin, Pa.   Kody Dillon Susquehanna   So. Bear, Del. 
Setter           Setter        
Moira Folan Juniata   So. Pittsburgh, Pa.   Lindsay Pugh Susquehanna   Sr. Bear, Del.
Libero/Defensive Specialist           Libero/Defensive Specialist         
Lizzie Herestofa Susquehanna     Glen Mills, Pa.   Aiyana Tietze-Ditoro Elizabethtown   Jr. Seattle, Wash.

 & 2018 First Team All-Landmark
* 2017 First Team All-Landmark
^ 2016 First Team All-Landmark