Long Beach State Places Two Pairs On Beach Volleyball All-Big West Team
Nele Barber, Rachel Nieto, Kobi Pekich and Sammee Thomas all receive first-team honors.
Long Beach, Calif. -
Long Beach State placed four players on the first-ever All-Big West Beach Volleyball team, as pairs Nele Barber and Rachel Nieto as well as Kobi Pekich and Sammee Thomas were named to the six-pair first team.
Nele Barber and Rachel Nieto posted a 16-10 overall record in 2016, and were 14-8 overall in dual matches. The pair had an excellent 8-1 record at No. 2, and were then promoted to No. 1, where the team went 6-7 against one of the toughest schedules in the nation.
The pair were joined by Long Beach State’s No. 3 team, Kobi Pekich and Sammee Thomas. Pekich and Thomas had the team’s best overall record on the season at 19-6 and were tremendous all season long. Putting together a 15-6 record at No. 3 in dual matches, Pekich and Thomas were unbeaten at the Big West Championships, and were also the Silver Bracket champions at the USAV Beach Volleyball Collegiate Challenge in Hermosa Beach earlier this season.
Pekich finished the season with 21 wins, tied for the fifth-most in a single season for the 49ers, and her .760 winning percentage with Thomas was the sixth highest in school history.
Barber/Nieto and Pekich/Thomas are the first ever All-Big West selections for Long Beach State, as the conference is in its first season of sponsoring Beach Volleyball. Tara Roenicke and AVP tour professional Caitlin Ledoux were two-time first-team All-Americans for the Beach.
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