Kipp & Simpson Earn Sportswomen of Colorado Honors
DENVER - Former University of Colorado athletes Shalaya Kipp (track and field) and Taylor Simpson (volleyball) were honored by the Sportswomen of Colorado for their 2014 performances.
Kipp, a Salt Lake City native, recorded a pair of All-America honors during the 2014 indoor and outdoor seasons. She raced to a seventh place finish in the 5,000-meter run at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships, finishing in 16:32.03 for her first indoor All-America honor. Earlier in the indoor season, Kipp etched her name into CU's record book, becoming the fifth fastest indoor 5k performer (16:00.15). She also worked her way to fifth on the indoor 3k record book, clocking in at 9:15.79.
The outdoor season was another great one for Kipp as she moved up to seventh on CU's all-time outdoor 5k performers list (15:54.13). Her main event was the 3,000-meter steeplechase and during the season she won her second individual Pac-12 title in the event. She went on to compete at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships and placed fifth overall for her fourth All-America honor in the steeplechase. Kipp finished her CU career at the USA Outdoor Championships, finishing seventh overall.
Kipp will also be inducted into the Sportswomen of Colorado's Hall of Fame as this is the third honor for her.
"She's had an amazing, wonderful career," CU track and field coach Mark Wetmore said last June. "She's one of our favorite people to have here at CU; smart, funny, totally cooperative, a wonderful young woman and we're just so thrilled to have had her."
Simpson became CU's first AVCA First Team All-American last December. She broke CU's single season kills record of 528, which had stood for 17 years, with 591 kills. She recorded a career-best 32 kills in the five-set thriller against Colorado State in the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Dec. 6. The 32 kills tied for the eighth-best total in Buffs history. She also hit .426 in the match, her third best hitting efficiency of the year.
The outside hitter from Colorado Springs, Colo. was also named AVCA All-Pacific South Region and All-Pac-12. Twice during the regular season, Simpson picked up Pac-12 Offensive and ESPNW Volleyball Player of the Week honors. She was also recognized by the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame as the 2014 "College Female Athlete of the Year." Simpson ranked 11th in the NCAA with 4.65 kills per set and was also 15th in the NCAA in points per set (5.18). Simpson was an all-around player as she was second on the team with 2.71 digs per set and averaged 0.57 blocks per set.
"Taylor's accomplishments over the past year have been nothing short of outstanding," CU volleyball coach Liz Kritza said. "This recognition through the Sportswomen of Colorado places her among the elite female athletes in the state, which is where she belongs. Her experience at CU has paralleled the mission of the Sportswomen of Colorado, such that she has been a great role model for young women, grown the sport of volleyball through action and exposure, and she represented her state with poise and excellence."
The 41st Annual Awards Celebration is Sunday, March 8 at the Marriott Denver Tech Center. ESPN writer and former CU women's basketball player Kate Fagan will speak at the event. More information can be found at www.sportswomenofcolorado.org/banquet.