Coppola and Nuss Take Home AVCA All-America Honors
BATON ROUGE – Following an outstanding season in which they went 31-8 on Court 1, Claire Coppola and Kristen Nuss became the first LSU players to be named AVCA Beach All-Americans, the association announced Thursday.
“This is an amazing honor,” said head coach Russell Brock. “I’m excited for them and for our program. This pair is so deserving.”
Coppola and Nuss were one of three LSU pairs to travel to Hermosa Beach, California, last weekend to compete against elite pairs from 19 other universities in the USAV Collegiate Beach Championship. After going 1-1 in pool play, the LSU duo went undefeated in bracket play with a 5-0 record and won the championship and the honor to represent the United States at the FISU World University Games July 9-13 in Munich, Germany.
The sophomore duo finished the regular season with a 25-7 mark which included 14 wins over pairs from ranked competition and four against top-10 competition. In just two seasons at LSU, the pair has played more than 85 percent of its matches on the top court and has amassed 58 victories placing them in a tie for sixth on the Tiger’s all-time wins’ list.
After being named to the CCSA Preseason All-Conference team, Coppola and Nuss earned CCSA Pair of the Week twice after defeating three pairs from top-15 competition and going 4-0 at both the GCU Beach Tournament on opening weekend and at the Gamecock Grandslam four weeks later. The duo received AVCA/collegebeachvb.com National Pair of Week too for its performance at the Gamecock Grandslam.
That weekend at the Gamecock Grandslam began a dominant stretch for Coppola and Nuss which saw them win 13 matches in a row, all in straight sets.
Coppola and Nuss went 5-0 at the CCSA Tournament, pushing LSU to its best finish ever at the tournament as runners-up. For the second straight season, LSU got a berth to the NCAA Championship and Coppola and Nuss earned one victory there which came in LSU’s 3-1 defeat of South Carolina.
“Last year, they had a great freshman season but it was clear as soon as the last ball hit the sand that they weren’t satisfied,” said Brock. “They didn’t stop working to be better and it clearly showed this season. They will always be the first AVCA All-Americans for our program and will set the example on what it takes to be the best.”