IRVING, Texas – With WKU Volleyball currently riding a five-match win streak, Conference USA has recognized a trio of Lady Toppers as Players of the Week in Rachel Anderson, Alyssa Cavanaugh and Jessica Lucas, the league office announced Monday. Cavanaugh, the Holiday Inn University Plaza Invite MVP, was named the Offensive Player of the Week; Anderson collected Defensive Player of the Week honors; and Lucas secured the Setter of the Week nod.
Three weekly awards by the same team in the same week has only happened twice prior in Conference USA history – both times by Southern Miss (2009, 2011).
Anderson’s and Cavanaugh’s honors mark the first of the year for the duo while Lucas collects her award for the second-straight week.
The Lady Toppers collected their second weekend tournament title in the first three weeks of the season with the Holiday Inn University Plaza Invite crown. After a Tuesday evening sweep at Belmont, WKU returned home to take down ETSU in four sets, [RV] Pittsburgh in a five-set thriller and closed play with a sweep of Saint Louis. The Red and White posted an NCAA 2017 single-match record 23.0 blocks in their win over Pitt.
Collecting the Defensive Player of the Week nod for the first time of her career, Anderson now has three combined C-USA accolades with a pair of offensive honors. The Sturgis, Mich., native tallied a total of 27.0 blocks over the third week of play and averaged a stellar 1.80 blocks per set in addition to her 2.60 kills per set on the offensive side of the net. Anderson tallied five or more blocks and nine or more kills in all four matches on the week. With 10 blocks each during WKU’s five-set battle with Pitt, Anderson and Amara Listenbee became just the second and third Lady Toppers to ever post double digit blocks in Diddle Arena.
Cavanaugh spent the third week of her senior campaign reminding everyone why she was voted the C-USA Preseason Player of the Year, collecting a scorching 69 kills over the seven-day span. The Louisville native notched a season-best 22 kills in WKU’s weekend-opening victory over ETSU, working at a .526 clip. She averaged 4.60 kills per set on the week including a blistering nine in the second set of WKU’s victory over Saint Louis alone. Cavanaugh hit at a .420 offensive rate on the week with her “lowest” showing coming against [RV] Pittsburgh when she hit .333 with 19 kills while also registering 12 block assists across the Lady Toppers’ four matches.
Additionally, Cavanaugh has now collected four Offensive Player of the Week awards across three different seasons during her time on The Hill.
Finally, Lucas earned her 14th career C-USA Setter of the Week laurel after another solid showing across the week. Lucas not only record her 1,000th career dig during the Holiday Inn University Plaza Invite, she also moved into fourth place on WKU’s all-time assist leaderboard and currently sits at 4,416 with plenty of time to continue to climb. The Seymour, Ind., native averaged 10.47 assists per set across the four match span for the Lady Toppers, facilitating the high-powered offense to a collective .304 hitting percentage during that time. Lucas recorded a season-high 46 assists during WKU’s victory over [RV] Pittsburgh while also recording six blocks, five kills and five digs during the match. In addition, Lucas collected 12 blocks across the four matches. A senior on The Hill, Lucas also produced her third double-double outing of the season with 44 assists and 10 digs against ETSU.
With home play wrapped up until the end of the month, Travis Hudson’s crew will hit the road Tuesday for a midweek match up at Lipscomb. First serve from Nashville, Tenn., is slated for 6:30 p.m.
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