University Park, Pa. — After being named the Suzy Favor Female Big Ten Athlete of the Year, Penn State women’s volleyball outside hitter Megan Hodge (Durham, N.C.) has been named one of four ESPY award nominees for Best Female College Athlete. The ESPY’s take place on Wednesday, July 14 at the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles.
Fans have a chance to select the winner in a number of categories by voting online or via mobile at espn.com/espys or on the ESPN Facebook page: facebook.com/espn. Hodge joins Tina Charles and Maya Moore of Connecticut women’s basketball and UCLA softball player Megan Lagenfeld as nominees.
Since graduating with a degree in business in May, Hodge has competed with the U.S. Women’s National Volleyball Team at the Montreux Volley Masters in Switzerland. She started all five matches and helped lead the U.S. to a silver medal. Hodge is currently competing with Team USA in the IX Pan American Cup that started June 18 in Mexico. Hodge and the U.S. women finished on top in Pool B play with a 5-0 record and advanced to the semifinals set for June 25.
Before joining the U.S. Women’s National Team, Hodge accumulated a seemingly endless list of awards during her Penn State career. Hodge was a two-time Big Ten Player of the Year, having earned the honor as both a freshman and a senior and was a four-time unanimous All-Big Ten selection. She was named the Touchdown Club of Columbus 2009 Female Athlete of the Year and a finalist for the prestigious AAU Sullivan Award. Hodge was Penn State’s fourth four-time AVCA All-American and just the fifth four-time First Team honoree in AVCA history. Most recently, Hodge was named co-winner of the Honda-Broderick Cup, honoring the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year, and was also voted the Suzy Favor Female Big Ten Athlete of the Year.
Hodge and fellow senior Alisha Glass (Leland, Mich.) made up the winningest class in program history. The pair amassed a career win/loss record of 142-5 in four years. During her senior season, Hodge averaged 4.67 kills per set (560 kills) while leading the Nittany Lions to the 2009 NCAA title. The AVCA Division I National Player of the Year, Hodge aided the Lions to a perfect 38-0 record, a 20-0 record in Big Ten play and the program’s 13th Big Ten title in her final collegiate season. She was named the Big Ten Player of the Week three-times in 2009 and was also tabbed the AVCA National Player of the Week on two occasions. In addition, Hodge was part of the 2008 squad that became the only team in NCAA Division I, II or II history to finish the regular season without losing a single set. That run was part of Penn State’s record-breaking 102-match winning streak, which the team aims to extend in 2010.
Hodge was not only a strong presence on the court, but also in the classroom. A three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection, Hodge was a two-time ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American, earning Second Team honors in 2008 and First Team laurels in 2009. She also became the program’s third Academic All-American of the Year.
The Nittany Lions open the 2010 season and aim to extend their winning streak traveling to the Carolina Classic hosted by the University of North Carolina on Aug. 27-28. Penn State opens its home slate on Sept. 3 against Seton Hall in the Nittany Lion Invitational.