By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Willamette University's freshman libero Elena Vasquez (Kingston, WA/North Kitsap HS), who excelled in matches against University of Puget and Pacific Lutheran University this past weekend, has been chosen as the Northwest Conference Volleyball Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week. The Bearcats defeated Puget Sound 3-1 and played two strong sets against Pacific Lutheran before falling to the NWC co-leaders, 3-0.
Vasquez registered a career-high 27 digs against Puget Sound and then earned 25 digs against Pacific Lutheran for her career-best in a three-set match. She averaged 7.43 digs per set during the two matches. Vasquez has contributed more than 10 digs in seven of 14 matches this season, including a current streak of five matches in a row. In addition, she has recorded nine digs in four other matches.
In last week's matches, Vasquez also supplied one service ace and two assists. For the season, she leads WU with 169 digs and is second on the team with eight service aces.
"Elena has been a 'rock' for us as our libero," Willamette Head Coach Tom Shoji said. "She always has an incredible effort in every match. Her 25 digs in the PLU match kept us in a lot of rallies."
The Bearcats will play at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon, on Friday, Sept. 6. Match time is scheduled for 7 p.m. (PDT).