UCLA's Love, USC's Hagglund and Stanford's Ajanaku named Pac-12 players of the week

By the Pac-12 Conference

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. -- The Pac-12 Conference office announced today the Pac-12 Volleyball Players of the Week for the week of Oct. 23-28. UCLA's Tabi Love was named the Offensive Player of the Week, USC's Natalie Hagglund was voted the Defensive Player of the Week, and STANFORD's Inky Ajanaku was selected the Freshman of the Week.

Senior outside hitter Tabi Love (Dauphin, Manitoba) averaged 7.00 kills per set to lead the sixth-ranked Bruins to victories over Washington State and then-fifth-ranked Washington, producing 24 kills against the Cougars and 25 versus the Huskies. Hitting at a 41.2 percent clip against the Cougars, her 24 kills are the most by a Bruin in a three-set match this season. Love had another strong outing against the Huskies, producing 10 of the Bruins' 19 kills in the opening set, en route to tallying 25 kills. She also added six digs and a pair of block assists. It was her seventh match of the season with at least 20 kills. For the week, she averaged 7.00 kills per set with a .270 hitting percentage. Additionally, she posted 7.14 points, 1.57 digs and 0.29 blocks per set. For the season, Love is averaging 4.55 kills per set, good for third in the Pac-12.

USC's defensive anchor for the last three years, junior libero Natalie Hagglund (Encinitas, Calif.) led the Trojans to a pair of wins over then-No. 5 Washington (3-2) and Washington State (3-0). Hagglund posted a career-high 34 digs in a five-set win against the Huskies. Her 34-dig total is the highest by a Pac-12 player this season, topping the previous high of 32 she posted earlier this season against Arizona State on Oct. 7. One night later, Hagglund put up another 20 digs in just three sets against WSU to tally 54 for the weekend. In eight sets of play, Hagglund averaged nearly seven digs per set (6.75 dps) and ranks second in the Pac-12 in the category, averaging 4.80 dps.

Freshman middle blocker Inky Ajanaku (Tulsa, Okla.) led the Cardinal to wins over Arizona and Arizona State last week, helping Stanford remain undefeated in the Pac-12 (12-0) and extend its season-long winning streak to 18 (the longest for Stanford since 2001). Ajanaku led the team in kills (3.14), points (3.71) and blocks (1.14) per set over the two matches. She also posted a .541 hitting percentage on the weekend. In the sweep over the Wildcats, she was the only Cardinal player to reach double-digit kills finishing with 11 on 19 attempts with just one error to hit .526. She also collected four blocks against in the match. Versus ASU, Ajanaku again put down 11 kills and finished with a .556 hitting percentage and four blocks. Ajanaku leads the Pac-12 with a .393 hitting percentage. With the wins, Stanford is off to its best start in Conference play since 1998 and is now ranked No. 1 in the AVCA poll.

It is Love's first-career weekly nod and UCLA's 63rd weekly honor all-time. It is Hagglund's second selection this season and second for her career. It is USC's 52nd all-time. Ajanaku earns the rookie nod for the second time this season and it is the fourth for Stanford this year and all-time.

Weekly awards have been selected every week of the season since the Conference began sponsoring women's volleyball in 1986. It is the second year the Pac-12 has announced an offensive, defensive and rookie honoree.

UCLA and USC travel to face the Arizona schools. The Bruins take on the Wildcats, while the Trojans battle Arizona State on Friday, Nov. 2. Both of those matches will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks. USC's match at Arizona on Sunday, Nov. 4 can also be seen on the Pac-12 Networks. Stanford also hits the road this week, facing Oregon State on Friday and Oregon on Sunday. Its match vs. the Ducks will be on the Pac-12 Networks.

For more information, including a full television schedule, visit www.pac-12.com

Also Nominated:
OFFENSIVE: Madi Kingdon, ARIZ; Macey Gardner, ASU; Joan Caloiaro, CAL; Alexis Austin, COLO; Alaina Bergsma, ORE; Rachel Williams, STAN; Sara Shaw, USC; Erin Redd, UTAH; Krista Vansant, WASH.

DEFENSIVE: Candace Nicholson, ARIZ; Nora Tuioti-Mariner, ASU; Shannon Hawari, CAL; Chelsey Keoho, COLO;  Canace Finley, ORE; Kyle Gilbert, STAN; Bojana Todorovic, UCLA; Amanda Gil, WASH.

FRESHMAN: Halli Amaro, ARIZ; Allison Palmer, ASU; Nicole Edelman, COLO; Canace Finley, ORE; Becca Strehlow, UCLA; Samantha Bricio, USC; Katy Beals, WASH.

 

2012 Pac-12 Volleyball Players of the Week
  Offensive Defensive Freshman
Aug.27 Alaina Bergsma, ORE Arica Nassar, OSU Samantha Bricio, USC
Sept. 3 Krista Vansant, WASH Karsta Lowe, UCLA Samantha Bricio, USc
Sept. 10 Camille Saxton, OSU Becky Defoe, OSU Madi Bugg, STAN
Sept. 17 Arica Nassar, OSu Marcelina Glab, WSU Macey Gardner, ASU
Sept. 24 Lauren Plum, ORE Jordan Burgess, STAN Jordan Burgess, STAN
Oct. 1 Krista Vansant, WASH Amanda Gil, WASH Macey Gardner, ASU
Oct. 8 Samantha Bricio, USC Natalie Hagglund, USC Samantha Bricio, USC
Oct. 15 Alaina Bergsma, ORE Kyle Gilbert, STAN Inky Ajanaku, STAN
Oct. 22 Carly Wopat, STAN Melanie Wade, WASH Samantha Bricio, USC
Oct. 29 Tabi Love, UCLA Natalie Hagglund, USC Inky Ajanaku, STAN