For the 15th consecutive season, the Western Kentucky volleyball team has been recognized as a recipient of the USMC/AVCA Team Academic Award for its work in the classroom throughout the 2020-21 school year, the association announced Monday.

With a team GPA of 3.619, the Lady Toppers earned the Team Academic Award for the 19th time since 1999.

“I’m not sure more could get thrown at a student-athlete than what our kids faced this spring,” WKU head coach Travis Hudson said in a news release. “To deal with all the COVID issues, playing a season during the spring, and being away from campus in the NCAA Tournament bubble for an extended period of time right before finals, our players were faced with many challenges to their academic endeavors.

“To emerge from all that and earn the Team Academic Award for the 15th year in a row is a tremendous accomplishment. I am very proud!”

WKU’s 15-year streak of the award is tied for the sixth-longest among all Division I programs.

The award, which was initiated in the 1992-93 academic year, honors collegiate and high school volleyball teams that displayed excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team grade-point average on a 4.0 scale or a 4.10 cumulative team GPA on a 5.0 scale.

In total, an all-time record of 243 Division I women’s teams were honored with WKU representing one of nine Conference USA programs on the list including: Charlotte, FIU, Louisiana Tech, Marshall, Middle Tennessee, North Texas, Old Dominion, Rice, Southern Miss, UAB and UTSA.