The Palm Beach Atlantic volleyball team was named one of 1,313 teams that earned the U.S. Marine Corps/American Volleyball Coaches Association (USMC/AVCA) Team Academic Award for the 2019-20 season.
The award, announced on Monday, honors volleyball teams that maintain a year-long grade-point average (GPA) of 3.30 on a 4.0 scale or 4.10 on a 5.0 scale. The Sailfish posted a 3.52 GPA - the second-highest team GPA in the Athletic Department - for the 2019-20 academic year.
In announcing the award, the USMC and AVCA described Coach Doug Walters as a "critical anchor" for student athletes as they transitioned to remote learning.
"In this uncertain time, leadership matters," they wrote. "Doug did not win this award. Your team did. But the encouragement to stay focused on academics means this accomplishment was not happenstance."
Monday's announcement marks the eighth consecutive season where Sailfish Volleyball has been honored for their team academic achievements. Rising seniors Lilly Turner and Ally Smith were each earned CoSIDA Academic All-District status in November for their efforts in the classroom and on the court.
In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and with the health, safety and well-being of student-athletes as the highest priority, the Sunshine State Conference has announced that fall sports competition has been postponed for the upcoming semester. The Sailfish plan to return to the court this spring.
Photo: Head Coach Doug Walters speaks to the women's volleyball team on the court. Please note: This photo was taken prior to COVID-19.