INDIANAPOLIS -- Milwaukee senior Rachel Neuberger has been named Horizon League Volleyball Offensive Player of the Week, while Valparaiso senior Ellen Vanden Berg has earned Defensive Player of the Week honors for the period of Oct. 14-20.
Neuberger, a senior from Muskego, Wis., averaged 5.83 kills per set in leading Milwaukee to a pair of League wins last week. She opened the weekend with 20 kills, hitting .594 with just one attack error, in UWM’s 3-0 win over Cleveland State. Neuberger’s 20 kills were the most by a Horizon League player in a three-set match this season. She added 15 kills, hitting .481 with just two attack errors, in the Panthers 3-0 sweep of Youngstown State on Saturday.
For the weekend, Neuberger had 35 kills and hit .542 (35-3-59).
Milwaukee (11-8, 7-0) ended the first half of the League schedule alone in first place and will look to remain undefeated in League play as they hit the road to play at Oakland (9-13, 3-4) on Friday and at Wright State (6-19, 0-7) on Saturday.
Vanden Berg, a senior from Little Chute, Wis., earned defensive honors after recording 18 blocks in Valpo’s three wins last week. She started the week with five blocks in Valpo’s 3-2 comeback win at IUPUI. She added seven blocks in the Crusaders’ 3-1 win over Oakland on Friday and had six blocks in just two sets of play in Valparaiso’s sweep of Wright State on Saturday.
Vanden Berg’s 18 blocks and 1.64 block/set average were both the high marks for Horizon League players last week.
Valparaiso (18-4, 6-1) sits in second place of the League standings at the midway point, one game behind Milwaukee. The Crusaders return to action Tuesday with a match at Illinois State before resuming conference play by hosting UIC (7-15, 2-5) on Saturday.
Other Top Performers for the Week:
Amanda Baker, Oakland (So., MH) - Baker had 20 kills and eight blocks last week for the Golden Grizzlies.
Jillian Bauer, Green Bay (So., L) - Bauer had a team-high 25 digs in Green Bay’s five-set loss at DePaul. She had 21 digs and seven assists in the Phoenix win over Cleveland State.
Jenna Cavanaugh, Youngstown State (Sr., MB) - Cavanaugh had a .448 hitting percentage last week and also averaged 1.29 blocks per set for the Penguins. She had nine kills on a .500 attack percentage and added seven blocks in YSU’s win at Green Bay.
Melissa Deatsch, Oakland (Fr., OH) - Deatsch averaged 2.10 digs per set last week for Oakland and also had eight service aces.
Sarah Dooms, Valparaiso (Sr., OH) - Dooms set a career-high with 19 kills and hit .304 in the Crusaders five-set win over IUPUI on Tuesday. She surpassed 1,000 kills and hit .364 with 18 kills in Valpo’s win over Oakland. She also led Valpo in kills in their sweep of Wright State. On the defensive side, she set a career-high with 25 digs at IUPUI and average 3.92 per set.
Justine Garcia, UIC (Sr., DS) - Garcia had a match-high 16 digs in UIC’s sweep of Wright State on Friday. It was her 11th consecutive double-digit dig performance.
Taylor Golabowski, Milwaukee (Jr., L) - Golabowski averaged 5.17 digs per set last week for the Panthers. She had 14 in a three-set win over Cleveland State and 17 in three sets against Youngstown State.
Nikki Holmes, Cleveland State (So., L) - Holmes recorded her eighth 20-dig match of the season with 20 digs against Green Bay. She averaged 4.29 digs per set this weekend.
Grace Kauth, Cleveland State (Fr., OH) - Kauth tied her career-high with 17 kills against Green Bay.
Sara Sternard, UIC (Jr., MH) - Sternard had a match-high 15 kills in UIC’s win over Wright State on Friday.
Leah Van Zeeland, Green Bay (Sr., RS) - Van Zeeland tied her career-high with 21 kills against DePaul and Cleveland State. She had back-to-back double-doubles with 21 kills, 10 digs against DePaul and 13 kills and 10 digs against Youngstown State. She hit .500 (21-2-38) in Saturday’s win over Cleveland State.
Horizon League Offensive Players of the Week:
Aug. 26 - Sarah Dooms, Valparaiso
Sept. 2 - Leah Van Zeeland, Green Bay
Sept. 9 - Grace Kauth, Cleveland State
Sept. 16 - Maggie Hannon, Cleveland State
Sept. 23 - Missy Hundelt, Youngstown State
Sept. 30 - Cassie Pelloni, Oakland
Oct. 7 - Sara Sternard, UIC
Oct. 14 - Rachel Neuberger, Milwaukee
Horizon League Defensive Players of the Week:
Aug. 26 - Katie Mroczenski, Green Bay
Sept. 2 - Kelsey Victor, Valparaiso
Sept. 9 - Nikki Holmes, Cleveland State
Sept. 16 - Aly Ryan, Youngstown State
Sept. 23 - Rachel Neuberger, Milwaukee
Sept. 30 - Taylor Golabowski, Milwaukee
Oct. 7 - Erika West, Youngstown State
Oct. 14 - Ellen Vanden Berg, Valparaiso