West Division Offensive Player of the Week
Kelsey Brandl, Ball State, So., MB, Lakeville, Minn./Lakeville North H.S. (Cincinnati)
Sophomore Kelsey Brandl was nearly unstoppable for the Cardinals last week, collecting 34 total kills in BSU's matches versus Bowling Green and Miami. In Friday's contest versus the Falcons, Brandl smashed a career- and match-high 20 kills while hitting for a .516 (20-4-31) rate of success. She also tallied four blocks, three digs and an ace in the contest. Against the RedHawks, Brandl once again paced all players with 14 kills, while hitting for a .370 (14-4-27) rate of success. Brandl also served up a career-high four aces versus Miami, while adding four blocks and two digs. For the week, Brandl hit .448 (34-8-58), while averaging 3.78 kills, 0.89 blocks and 0.56 aces per set. Brandl entered the week hitting .349, while averaging 2.20 kills and 0.16 aces per set. She is currently hitting .368, while averaging 2.42 kills and .22 aces per set.
East Division Offensive Player of the Week
Shari Luther, Bowling Green, Sr., MB, Colgate, Wisc./Germantown
Shari Luther hit .458 on the weekend, helping Bowling Green to a split of two MAC contests. She averaged 3.22 kills per set and had just two attack errors in 59 attempts. As well, Luther had nine blocks and seven digs on the weekend. Friday night, Luther helped Bowling Green overcome a two-set deficit against Ball State, posting 16 kills and six blocks as the Falcons won the final three sets to get the win. Against rival Toledo Saturday, she had 13 kills, three blocks, and two aces.
West Division Defensive Player of the Week
Caitlin Strimel, Western Michigan, Sr., Libero, Chicago, Ill./Mother McAuley
Caitlin Strimel compiled 51 total digs for 7.29 digs per set to lead Western Michigan to victories over Kent State and Ohio. Strimel started the week with a season-high 32 digs against the Golden Flashes to lead a defensive effort that produced 105 digs, third-most in a four-set match in school history and only the seventh 100-dig match in school history. Strimel came back against the MAC's top attacking team and produced 19 digs against Ohio. The Broncos held their two opponents to a combined .134 hitting with KSU hitting .098 and OU hitting .190, 103 points lower than its average in MAC matches. Strimel was perfect on serve receive with no errors in 25 attempts against two of the top serving teams in the conference.
East Division Defensive Player of the Week
Kristen Barr, Kent State, Jr., DS/Libero, Bowling Green, Ohio/Bowling Green
Junior libero Kristen Barr recorded a career-high 41 digs Friday at MAC-West leading Western Michigan. It was also the most by any conference player in a single match and was the second-highest total by a KSU player in a match. The 55 total digs gives Barr 346 total digs and 3.72 digs per set, which moves her from 10th into the top-5 of the conference in that category.
Additional Offensive Player of the Week Nominees
Brionna Patterson, Akron, Sr., OH, Sandusky, Ohio/Sandusky
Senior Brionna Patterson posted her fifth consecutive double-double last Friday in the Zips surging 3-2 win over the Eastern Michigan Eagles. Posting double-figure kills for the 22nd time this season, Patterson led the Zips with 23. She also added ten digs, five blocks, two service aces and one assist in the victory.
Marisa Hornbaker, Buffalo, Jr., OH, Colorado Springs, CO/Colorado Springs Christian
Hornbaker had 20 kills on Saturday night as the Bulls defeated Eastern Michigan. Hornbaker took a career-high 51 swings on the night as she led the Bulls in both categories. Hornbaker is currently second on the team with 250 kills, a career best for her. She is also third on the team with 15 service aces.
Lauren Krupsky, Central Michigan, Jr., OH, Livonia, Mich. /Livonia Churchill
Lauren Krupksy was the main force behind a dominant CMU offense in a pair of sweeps last weekend. Krupsky tallied 26 kills (4.33) and added three aces (0.50) and four blocks for a team-high 31.0 points in a mere six sets. She hit .297 (26 kills in 64 swings) on the weekend. The junior had 11 kills in 27 swings,three aces and a block against Buffalo and added 15 kills in 37 swings and three blocks against Akron.
Kristen Baker, Eastern Michigan, Fr., MB, Mentor, Ohio / Mentor
Baker had her best weekend as an Eagle with 23 kills, nine total blocks and a .308 attack percentage in nine sets on the weekend. Versus Akron, Baker set a career-high with 16 kills on 35 swings to go along with her seven total blocks and a .314 hitting percentage. She followed it up with a seven kill, two block effort versus Buffalo.
Cassie Farrell, Miami, So., MH, Columbus, Ohio/Bishop Watterson
Was team's top offensive threat over weekend hitting .250 from the middle. Recorded top kills per set average of 2.40. She also contributed defensively with five blocks and three digs.
Meagan Schoenrock, Northern Illinois, Sr., OH, Sylvania, Ohio/Northview
Schoenrock totaled 30 kills (5.00/set), two aces, six blocks (1.00/set) and hit .414 over the weekend. Against Ohio, she tallied 12 kills, hit .333 and had three blocks. In NIU's sweep of Kent State, she registered 18 kills, hit .484, had two aces and three blocks. She has now had double-digit kills in nine consecutive matches, including all but one conference contest.
Ellen Herman, Ohio, Sr., OH, Toledo, Ohio/Central Catholic
Herman is now just 200 kills off the MAC record as she posted 31 kills this week (5.17 per set), while hitting .273 with a team-high three aces. That performance, combined with a 21-dig (3.50 per set), two block performance on the defensive end, gave her a nice all-around week. She totaled a team-high 35.0 points (5.83 per set).
Sondra Parys, Toledo, Fr., MB, Crystal Lake, IL/Prairie Ridge
Freshman OH Sondra Parys averaged 4.86 kills per set to go along with a .346 attack percentage to lead the Rockets to victories over Miami and Bowling Green. In UT's sweep over Miami, Parys tallied a team-high 11 kills and a .360 hitting percentage to help the Rockets post a season-best .298 hitting mark. She then followed it up by registering her third 20-kill match of the season with a match-high 23 kills and .340 attack mark vs. Bowling Green. Parys also contributed on the defensive side of the net with 0.86 blocks per set.
Allyson Doyle, Western Michigan, Jr., OH, Battle Creek, Mich./St. Philip Catholic Central
Allyson Doyle led the Broncos to an undefeated weekend with wins over Kent State and Ohio with 3.00 kills per set, .276 hitting, 1.29 assists per set, 4.14 digs per set and 0.71 blocks per set. Doyle's top offensive match came against the top blocking and defensive team in the MAC in Ohio. Doyle delivered 11 kills with no errors to hit .478 against the Bobcats. Doyle also had 10 kills, 19 digs, six assists, four blocks and one ace in Friday night's victory over Kent State.
Additional Defensive Player of the Week Nominees
Megan Rodriguez, Akron, Sr., Libero, Sagamore Hills, Ohio/Walsh Jesuit
Senior Megan Rodriguez tied for a team-high in digs Friday in Akron's 3-2 win over the Eastern Michigan Eagles. Entering the contest needing just nine to pass the 1,000th dig mark, Rodriguez posted 24 to reach the milestone.
Tori Beckman, Buffalo, Fr., Libero, Kansas City, MO/Park Hill
Beckman led the Bulls with 34 digs on the week, including a match-high 28 digs against Eastern Michigan. Beckman averaged 4.86 digs per set over the weekend and currently leads the Bulls with 394 digs on the year.
Kaitlyn Schultz, Central Michigan, So., MB, Highland, Mich. /Milford
Kaitlyn Schultz was a major part of CMU's defense, as the Chippewas held Akron and Buffalo to a .059 offensive efficiency. Schultz frustrated opposing hitters all weekend and finished with a total of nine blocks in a mere six sets. She also piled up 18 kills (3.0/set) in just 31 swings (.387) and was second on the team with 23 points.
Ashley Mason, Eastern Michigan, So. ,Setter, Eastlake, Ohio / Lake Catholic
Mason pitched in 22 digs, nine kills, four blocks and 77 set assists for the Eagles on the weekend. Against Akron, Mason tallied nine digs and three block assists to go with her three kills and 38 set assists. The following night against Buffalo, was a double-double effort with 39 set assists and 13 digs.
Meghan Simons, Ohio, Sr., MB, Lancaster, Ohio/Bloom Carroll
Simons had a team-high six blocks to go 20.5 points (3.42 per set) this week. She also notched 17 kills (2.83 per set) and hit .433 with a pair of assists on the offensive end.
Liz Sundburg, Toledo, Sr., MB, Holland, MI/West Ottawa
Senior MB Liz Sundburg was extremely efficient on both sides of the net for UT in its weekend sweep over Miami and Bowling Green. She tallied 1.29 blocks per set and also registered a .522 (13-1-22) attack percentage. In UT's 3-0 win over Miami, she tallied four blocks and helped limit the RedHawks to a .143 attack percentage. Sundburg then topped that performance with five blocks and a .571 ATK% (8-0-14) in a 3-1 triumph over Bowling Green.