Four former Highlanders on all-decade volleyball team

Photo courtesy of RU Athletics

Emma Deininger, Rachel Wiechecki, and Maddie Palmer have been named to the Big South Conference to the All-Decade Volleyball Team while former head coach Marci Byers was selected as the Coach of the Decade.

Deininger, Wiechecki, Palmer, and Byers were all a part of the teams that won three conference regular season titles in addition to a pair of conference tournament championships en route to NCAA Tournament appearances. 
Deininger was the Big South Freshman of the Year, the Scholar-Athlete of the Year in back-to-back seasons was selected All-Conference several times, was on the Big South All-Freshman Team member and the All-Tournament Team, was named to the All-Academic team twice, was the VaSID Rookie of the Year, won a pair of VaSID All-State honors, and was on the CoSIDA Academic All-District First Team and the CoSIDA Academic All-American Second Team.

She holds 10 single-season program records including the record for blocks (145) set her junior. Deininger is the program’s all-time program career leader in blocks (426), matches played (127) and block assists (372).  
Wiechecki was the program’s first American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) honorable mention in 2013 en route to a number of other recognitions. She was a Big South All-Freshman Team selection, a three-time All-Tournament honoree, Radford’s Female Co-Athlete of the Year, conference Player of the Year, a two-time First Team All-Big South member, a conference tournament MVP and a two-time VaSID All-State First Team pick.

She broke various program records during her Highlander career in addition to leading the league in several categories. She still holds the career record for double-doubles at 63 and three individual single-season records. 
Palmer’s garnered accolades throughout her career at Radford. She was named to the Big South All-Freshman Team, was the Big South Conference Player of the Year twice, was First Team All-Conference twice, was on the All-Tournament Team twice, was the tournament MVP in 2017, the VaSID Player of the Year in 2017, was on the VaSID All-State First Team twice and was an AVCA honorable mention in 2017.

She led the conference her senior season with 4.50 kills per match, 47 aces, 568 point, and 5.16 points per set. Palmer not only holds 15 single-season records but is the all-time program leader in kills at 1,545 and points at 1,745. She appears in the top 10 in every other category. She is also a professional volleyball player.  
Byers took over as the Highlanders’ head coach in 2008. She led the program to three regular-season championships, two tournament titles and two NCAA appearances. Byers is a four-time Big South Coach of the Year selection and was twice named the VaSID Coach of the Year. She coached several conference Players of the Year, a Freshman of the Year, a pair of tournament MVPs, two Scholar-Athletes of the Year, 12 all-academic selections, 34 all-conference honorees, 15 all-tournament selections, 14 VaSID honorees, five CoSIDA academic honorees, two AVCA all-region honorable mentions and the AVCA Team Academic award four times..  
A 15-person committee of Big South Conference administrators served as the official voting panel to determine the All-Decade Team with fan voting accounting for 20 percent of the overall total.

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