East Division Offensive Player of the Week
Lindsey Butterfield, Bowling Green, Jr., LS, Springfield, Ohio/Springfield
Lindsay Butterfield hit .360 with 21 kills as Bowling Green jumped out to a 2-0 start, including a three-set sweep of preseason East Division favorite Ohio, in conference play this weekend. Butterfield had 10 kills and hit .450 in the victory over Ohio and followed that up with 11 kills and a .300 attack percentage in a three-set sweep of Kent State. She added three blocks on the week as well.
East Division Defensive Player of the Week
Leah Shaw, Bowling Green, Sr., MB, Princeton, Ill./Princeton
Leah Shaw had nine blocks on the weekend, including a career-best seven against Kent State, as Bowling Green jumped out to a 2-0 start in MAC play. Shaw was dominant defensively against Kent State, posting all seven of her blocks, two of them solo, in the first two sets to take the Golden Flashes out of their offensive rhythm. Shaw added 17 kills on the weekend, posting at least eight in each match.
West Division Offensive Player of the Week
Kaitlyn McIntyre, Central Michigan, So., OH, Beaver Dam, Wis./Beaver Dam
Preseason All-MAC selection sophomore Kaitlyn McIntyre proved her selection in Central Michigan’s opening two matches of Mid-American Conference play Friday and Saturday, racking up 43 kills versus Northern Illinois and MAC favorite Western Michigan. After a 16-kill performance versus NIU in the MAC opener, McIntyre slammed home a career-high 27 kills to help the Chippewas defeat the preseason favorite Broncos, 3-1. After the Chippewas allowed the Broncos to even the match with a victory in set two, McIntyre put the team on her back and recorded nine kills in set three and eight kills in set four to seal the victory for the Chippewas. The sophomore averaged 5.38 kills per set with a hitting percentage of .323 on the weekend, while also finishing with two aces in each match.
West Division Defensive Player of the Week
Jenna Coates, Central Michigan, Jr., L, Clarkston, Mich./Clarkston
Central Michigan junior Jenna Coates opened Mid-American Conference in a big way, recording 30-plus digs for the second time this season by recording 31 in the MAC opener versus Northern Illinois Friday night. Coates followed up her performance by out performing three-time MAC West Defensive Player of the Week Lena Oliver of Western Michigan in a match up of two of the top liberos in the conference. The junior finished with 16 digs versus the Broncos as the Chippewas’ defense held WMU to a .139 hitting percentage, including a .080 hitting percentage in set one and a .000 hitting percentage in set four, to earn the victory. Coates finished the weekend averaging 5.88 digs per set and upped her season average to 5.21 digs per set. She has now also held the match-high dig mark in 11 of the Chippewas’ 13 contests this season.
Additonal Nominees for Defensive Player of the Week
Jill Paluch, Akron, Jr., DS, Chicago, Ill./Nazareth Academy
The reigning MAC East Co-Defensive Player of the Week, Jill Paluch proved she was deserving of the award and then some in Akron’s first two conference matches of the season. The Zips swept Buffalo at home for the first time since the 2009 season, and Paluch kept the defense alive with her match-high 16 digs. She also recorded team-leading numbers with 13 digs at Ball State, fielding every ball that was served at her cleanly without posting an error in 29 attempts. Paluch has averaged over four digs per set every week so far this season.
Catie Fredrich, Ball State, Jr., L, Menomonee Falls, Wis./Menomonee Falls
Led the Ball State defense with a 4.43 digs-per-set average last week, while also posting a .970 reception percentage with just one reception error in 33 attempts.
Sierra Reed, Eastern Michigan, Fr., L, Parker City, Ind./Wapahani
Freshman libero, Sierra Reed, posted double-figure digs in both matches against Mid-American Conference opponents this weekend. The freshman libero had just one reception error in 47 attempts earning a .979 reception percentage. The Parker City, Ind. native had 4.62 digs per sets over the weekend, with 20 digs in five sets against Western Michigan, Sept. 21, and 17 against Northern Illinois, Sept. 22.
Hannah Herc, Kent State, Jr., DS/L, Eden, N.Y./Eden
Kent State junior defensive specialist/libero Hannah Herc (Eden, N.Y.) tallied a team-high 38 digs and 4.75 digs per set as the Golden Flashes opened Mid-American Conference play over the weekend on the road. Herc posted a career-high 22 digs in a 3-2 comeback victory over Miami on Friday (Sept. 21), followed by a 16-dig performance in a 3-0 loss at Bowling Green on Saturday. On the season, she leads the Golden Flashes in digs (183), digs per set (3.73), and aces (14). Herc has tallied double-digit digs in four consecutive matches and eight of the last nine overall.
Madison Hardy, Miami, Jr., L, Louisville, Ky./Mercy Academy
Hardy was very strong defensively for Miami this past weekend. She recorded 40 digs in two matches, 20 in each game. It was an average of 5.00 digs per set. She was targeted 52 times on serve in the two matches and had a perfect 1.000 reception percentage, making zero reception errors all weekend. She recorded three kills on the weekend, including twice sending the opponent’s serve right back across the net for a point.
Amber Walker, Northern Illinois, Sr., L, Juneau, Alaska/Juneau Douglas/Western Oregon
Has recorded 14 or more digs in seven of the last eight matches. Has had only one reception error in the last seven matches (109 attempts).
Kelly Lamberti, Ohio, So., OH, Cary, Ill./Cary Grove
Lamberti averaged a double-double this week with 22 kills and 21 digs in conference matches against Bowling Green and Miami. The sophomore was also second on the team with seven blocks. After leading the squad in digs against BG, Lamberti led the squad with 17 kills while also notching nine digs and five blocks.
Brooke Frazer, Toledo, So., MB, Monroe, MI
Sophomore Brooke Frazer led the Rockets’ dominant defensive performance at the net this weekend with 1.57 blocks per set. UT averaged 3.71 blocks per set in its two matches vs. Ball State and Buffalo. Frazer tallied four rejections in three sets in addition to a .455 ATK% vs. the Cardinals and seven blocks along with eight kills in four sets against the Bulls. As a team, UT tallied 10 blocks at Ball State and a season-high 16 against Buffalo.
Lena Oliver, Western Michigan, Jr., L, Battle Creek, Mich. / St. Philip Catholic Central
Oliver earned a special place in the Broncos’ history books this past weekend, and led the team in digs over the weekend as they earned their first MAC win of the year over Eastern Michigan on Friday. Oliver tied the match-high against the Eagles with 25 digs, which moved her past Katie Eberling for fourth place on the career digs list at Western Michigan. Oliver would add 15 more digs on Saturday in the loss to Central Michigan, which put her over 1,600 digs for her career; Oliver is just the fourth player in program history to surpass 1,600 digs. With 48 more digs, Oliver will move into second place, passing Katy Duffy and Allyson Doyle.
Additional Nominees for Offensive Player of the Week
Alex Cocklin, Akron, Jr., OH, Rochester, Mich./Marian High School
Alex Cocklin led an offense that was first in the MAC in hitting percentage heading into the week. She hit for a 2.57 kills per set average against Buffalo and Ball State, fueled by a .208 clip in Akron’s win over UB. Cocklin played an all-around solid match at BSU, finishing with 11 kills and just one dig shy of a double-double with nine digs. She also chipped in a pair of assists and had a hand in three of Akron’s 16 block-assists. The outside hitter’s 3.22 kills per set season average is the highest on the team.
Kara Bates, Ball State, Sr., OH, Bradley, Ill./Bradley Bourbonnais Community
Helped the Cardinals post a perfect 2-0 record last week and to first place in the MAC West Division as BSU claimed wins over Toledo and Akron. Turned in a dominating performance in the win over Toledo, racking up a match-best 19 kills and hitting .410 in a three set win. Also served up a dig and tallied a solo block in the contest. Followed with another solid performance against Akron, with a match-high 14 kills and a .281 hitting mark. Also collected a season-high five blocks in the victory, including a pair of solo stuffs. Added 18 digs in the two matches for a 2.57 digs-per-set average.
Rachel Iaquaniello, Eastern Michigan, Sr., OH, Plymouth, Mich./Dearborn Divine Child
Senior outside hitter, Rachel Iaquaniello, led the Eagles offense over the last weekend notching 40 kills, averaging five kills per set. In both of Eastern’s matches over the weekend, Iaquaniello posted double-doubles with 26 kill, 14 dig and 14 kill, 11 dig performances in the opening weekend of conference play. In Eastern’s opening match of the 2012 Mid-American Conference schedule, the Plymouth, Mich. native posted 26 kills and a .314 attack percentage (26-4-70) against Western Michigan Friday, Sept. 21. Iaquaniello picked up 14 more kills in the Eagles’ three-set victory Saturday, Sept. 22, over Northern Illinois University. The senior hit at a .281 clip for the week, averaging just one attack error per set.
Kathy Krupa, Kent State, So., MB, Burbank, Ill./ Reavis
Kent State senior middle blocker Katy Krupa (Burbank, Ill.) tallied team-bests with 19 kills, 2.38 kills per set, 3.31 points per set, and a .300 hitting percentage as the Golden Flashes went 1-1 over the weekend to open Mid-American Conference play. Krupa posted season-highs of 16 kills and a .582 hitting percentage, as well as a match-high three aces, to help the Golden Flashes defeat Miami, 3-2 (19-25, 25-23, 15-25, 25-13, 15-7), in their 2012 Mid-American Conference opener Friday (Sept. 21) in Oxford, Ohio.
Christina Menche, Miami, Sr., MB/OH, Hamilton, Ohio/Hamilton
Menche set a new career high with 15 kills against Kent State on Friday. She did that on only 27 attempts with two errors for an impressive .481 hitting percentage. She also had six kills against Ohio for a total of 21 over the weekend. She recorded 2.62 kills per set and led the team by far with a .419 hitting percentage on the weekend. Menche had five block assists in two games, including four in three sets vs. Ohio. She scored 24.5 points this weekend.
MacKenzie Roddy, Northern Illinois, So., OH, San Bernardino, Calif./Cajon
Roddy led the way in NIU’s win over CMU by totaling 19 kills 12 digs, two aces and hitting .311. Her elevated play over the past few weeks continued as she has 56 kills, 29 digs and six aces over last three matches and is hitting .286. Since a tough showing at the Pacific Invitational, Roddy has rebounded to tally double-figure kills in eight of the 11 matches since and has had multiple aces in four of the last six.
Jessica Brown, Western Michigan, Sr., MB, Kentwood, Mich. / East Kentwood
Brown was the leading offensive player for the Broncos in their first weekend of MAC play, leading them in kills over the course of two matches and helping them to a five-set road win against Eastern Michigan. Brown poured in 12 kills in five sets against the Eagles on Friday, helping the Broncos rally from a 1-0 deficit to defeat EMU 3-2 on the road. Brown was the leading attacker for the Broncos against Central Michigan on Saturday, recording 13 kills in the loss. Brown’s performance on Saturday put her over 1,300 kills for her career; the senior middle blocker now has 1,310 career kills, which ranks seventh on the career list at WMU.