Pac-12 volleyball honors announced

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 opening week of the season. OREGON's Alaina Bergsma was voted Offensive Player of the Week, OREGON STATE's Arica Nassar was selected the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week and USC's Samantha Bricio was named the Pac-12 Freshman of the Week.

OREGON senior Alaina Bergsma (Chandler, Ariz.) led the Ducks to a 3-0 weekend to start the season. She averaged 4.22 kills, 2.44 digs and 4.67 points per game in three matches. She recorded the team's first double-double of the year, tallying 23 kills and 15 digs in the five-set win over host and 24th-ranked Ohio State. Bergsma opened the 2012 campaign with eight kills on a .467 hitting percentage and a pair of aces in the sweep of Toledo, then followed up with seven kills, five digs and a .357 hitting efficiency in the 3-0 victory over Houston. A third-team All-American last year, she was named Most Valuable Player of the Sports Import DC Koehl Classic.

OREGON STATE sophomore Arica Nassar (Menifee, Calif.) earns defensive nods after posting a team-high 17 blocks over three matches, averaging 1.42 blocks per set. Four of those blocks were solo, including two in the five-set setback to No. 22 Kansas State. Nassar helped the Beavers to a 2-1 week, averaging 2.42 kills per set, in addition to 0.82 digs per set. Nassar's offensive and defensive contributions led to wins over Oakland (3-0) and UC Irvine (3-1).

USC's Samantha Bricio (Guadalajara, Mexico) led the Trojans to three victories at the Texas A&M Invitational over the weekend. In her collegiate debut, she posted seven kills with a .278 hitting percentage and added eight digs to help the squad in the 3-0 win over North Dakota. She posted a double-double in the final match of the weekend against Texas State. She had 16 kills and 10 digs, while recording a .419 hitting percentage. Also helping USC to a come-from-behind 3-1 win over host-Texas A&M, Bricio was voted the tournament's Most Valuable Player.

Bergsma twice earned the offensive weekly honor last year and has earned weekly nods four times in her career. It is Oregon's 21st weekly selection all-time. It is the first-career weekly honor for Nassar and OSU's 13th all-time. Bricio's recognition this week is the first-ever for a USC freshman.

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.

The Ducks, Beavers and Trojans return to action this weekend. Oregon heads back to the state of Ohio for the Ohio University Tournament on Aug. 31-Sept. 2. OSU travels to the Redbird Classic hosted by Illinois State. USC hosts the first-ever live-broadcasted women's volleyball match on the Pac-12 Networks when it takes on the Jiangsu Chinese Team on Tuesday, Aug. 28. The exhibition match is one of 82 live broadcasts of Pac-12 women's volleyball matches.

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Also Nominated:
OFFENSIVE - Madi Kingdon, ARIZ; Erica Wilson, ASU; Adrienne Gehan, CAL; Alexis Austin, COLO; Camille Saxton, OSU; Tabi Love, UCLA; Samantha Bricio, UCLA; Erin Redd, UTAH; Jordan Burgess, STAN; Krista Vansant, WASH; Jaicee Harris, WSU.

DEFENSIVE - Stephanie Preach, ASU; Mary McKennon, CAL; Haley Jacob, ORE; Natalie Hagglund, USC; Jordan Burgess, STAN.

FRESHMAN - Halli Amaro, ARIZ; Macey Gardner, ASU; Lara Vukasovic, CAL; Alexis Austin, COLO; Martenne Bettendorf, ORE; Becca Strehlow, UCLA; Jordan Burgess, STAN; Katy Beals, WASH; Kate Sommer, WSU.

2012 Pac-12 Women's Volleyball Players of the Week
Date Offensive Defensive Freshman
Aug. 27 Alaina Bergsma, ORE Arica Nassar, OSU Samantha Bricio, USC


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