It’s a Bugg’s Life, Again
STANFORD, Calif. – Stanford junior Madi Bugg has been named the Pac-12 Setter of the Year for the second straight season as the annual conference awards were announced today by Commissioner Larry Scott.
Joining Bugg on the All-Pac-12 Conference Team were juniors Inky Ajanaku and Jordan Burgess and redshirt freshman Merete Lutz. Seniors Morgan Boukather and Kyle Gilbert, and junior Brittany Howard were honorable mention selections.
Bugg, who hails from Apex, N.C., leads the nation with 12.02 assists per set and upped that mark to 12.11 assists per set in Pac-12 play. She is second on the team with 14 double-doubles this season and earned Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week on Oct. 20. She tallied a season high 59 assists in a four-set win at Oregon State on Oct. 31 and collected a career-best 24 digs in a win over No. 16 Arizona on Nov. 7. She recently moved into fifth place on the Cardinal’s career assists list with 3,572.
Ajanaku earns her third All-Pac-12 conference honors. The Tulsa, Okla., native led the Pac-12 in conference matches with a .419 hitting percentage and is sixth in the conference with 1.15 blocks per set. On the season, the middle blocker is fifth nationally with a .446 attack. She has twice been named the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week this season, while also securing Offensive Player of the Week accolades. She was tabbed the AVCA National Player of the Week on Sept. 9 after the Cardinal knocked off then-No. 1 Penn State and then-No. 9 Illinois.
Burgess is also a three-time all-conference recipient as a junior. The Fort Myers, Fla., native leads the team with 16 double-doubles on the year. She is second on the squad with 3.11 kills and 3.11 digs per set. She collected her 1,000th career dig against Arizona on Nov. 7 and is 16 kills away from 1,000 for her career. She will become just the ninth Cardinal player to amass 1,000 career kills and digs.
Lutz, a native of Houston, Texas, has been a force to be reckoned with in the middle for the Cardinal. She leads the Pac-12 and is fourth in the nation with a .446 attack percentage. She also ranks fifth in the conference with 1.18 blocks per set. She has twice been named the Pac-12 Freshman of the Week and earned all-tournament honors at the Stanford Invitational and USD Invitational. She was also named to the Pac-12 All-Freshman team this season.
Boukather earns her first career all-conference accolades. A senior from Newport Beach, Calif., the opposite has shined in her final season on The Farm. She is posting career highs in kills (2.55), digs (2.18), points (3.05) and hitting percentage (.285). She has five double-doubles on the year and posted a career high 18 kills at Utah (10/19) and registered a career best 24 digs against Arizona (11/7).
Gilbert also receives her first career Pac-12 honors. The libero is second in the conference with 4.71 digs per set, pushing that mark to 4.89 digs per set against Pac-12 opponents. She earned Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week honors after setting a school record with 40 digs against Arizona on Nov. 7. She has registered double-digit digs in all 30 of Stanford’s matches this season.
Howard is being recognized for the third time in her career after earning All-Pac-12 honors as a freshman and honorable mention as a sophomore. The Los Altos, Calif., native is one of five Cardinal players to tally at least 200 kills this season. She is averaging 2.11 kills per set and 2.20 digs per set.
Washington senior Krista Vansant was named the Pac-12 Player of the Year for the second time, while the Huskies’ Cassie Strickland was chosen the Libero of the Year. Oregon State rookie Mary-Kate Marshall was named the Freshman of the Year, while head coach Terry Liskevych nabbed Coach of the Year honors.
The Cardinal plays host to CSU Bakersfield in the NCAA Tournament on Friday, Dec. 5 at 7 p.m. in Maples Pavilion. The winner will take on the winner of the Loyola Marymount-Michigan State match on Saturday, Dec. 6 at 7 p.m.