Nebraska volleyball’s Annika Albrecht, Kelly Hunter named Sullivan Award finalists

Nebraska volleyball’s Annika Albrecht, Kelly Hunter named Sullivan Award finalists
Kelly Hunter, left, and Annika Albrecht, right, helped lead Nebraska to its fifth national championship. (World-Herald News Service

Nebraska volleyball players Annika Albrecht and Kelly Hunter are two of seven finalists for the 88th AAU Sullivan Award, which is given annually to the nation’s top amateur athlete.

Albrecht and Hunter are the third and fourth Nebraska volleyball players to be finalists for the award, following Mikaela Foecke in 2015-16 and Kelsey Robinson in 2013-14. Albrecht and Hunter will attend the Sullivan Award ceremony in New York City on April 17.

Voting for the finalists began Friday. Fans can click here to cast their votes.

Hunter, a three-year team captain, was a first-team All-American and the Big Ten setter of the year. The Papillion native also shared most outstanding player honors at the NCAA championship, finishing her career with a 16-1 record in the NCAA tournament, best of any starting setter in NU history.

Albrecht, a second-team All-American and All-Big Ten selection, finished her career sixth on NU’s career aces chart with 139. She was only the third Husker since 2000 to play in every set (489) of her four-year career.

The other finalists for this year’s Sullivan Award are:

» Figure skaters Alex and Maia Shibutani, who won two bronze medals at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games.

» Ohio State wrestler Kyle Snyder, a repeat Sullivan Award finalist, Olympic gold medalist and three-time NCAA champion.

» North Carolina basketball player Joel Berry, named the 2017 Final Four most outstanding player after helping lead the Tar Heels to a national championship.

» Michigan distance runner Erin Finn, who is one of five women in NCAA history to have run faster than 4:40 in the mile, 9:00 in the 3,000 meters and 15:25 in the 5,000 meters.

» Para-equestrian Angela Peavy, who is paralyzed on the left side of her body and claimed the 2017 Para-Equestrian Dressage National Championship.

At least two people with Nebraska ties have won the Sullivan Award — former Husker wrestler Rulon Gardner in 2000 and Falls City distance runner Gil Dodds in 1943.

The award has been presented annually since 1930, and notable former winners include Missy Franklin, Shawn Johnson, Tim Tebow, JJ Redick, Michael Phelps, Peyton Manning and Carl Lewis, among others.

We strive for accuracy. Report a typo, inaccuracy, or mistake here.