PHOENIX, Ariz. – The Western Athletic Conference office announced on Sunday afternoon that New Mexico State senior middle hitter Desiree Scott was selected as the WAC Player of the Year and head coach Mike Jordan was named WAC Coach of the Year. In addition sophomore Gwen Murphy earned first team honors.
Six of the nine schools were represented on the postseason teams that were selected by the league’s head coaches. Bakersfield and Utah Valley had two players each on the first team and one apiece on the second team. The top-seeded Aggies had two players on the first team.
“I’m really happy for both Desiree and Gwen and they are well deserved honors,” Jordan said. “We knew when we recruited Desiree that she could be this caliber of player. She is one of the most difficult players to stop on any given night. With Gwen, we could see this coming in the off season because she was improving and started more confidence. I believe she made her own case for player of the year with the numbers she was putting up.”
After a 14-2 conference season that led to a 2013 league title, Jordan earned his fourth WAC Coach of the Year honor (2005, 2006, 2008, 2013).
Scott earned WAC Player of the Year and first team All-WAC honors after ranking second in the conference during WAC matches in blocks (1.38), third in hitting percentage (.401), fifth in points (3.69) and ninth in kills (2.78). She hit .300 or better in 11 of 16 league matches. In the most recent NCAA statistics report, Scott ranks 40th nationally in blocks per set (1.29).
Murphy, a sophomore who earned the first All-WAC honor of her career, led the league in hitting percentage (.470) and was third in blocks (1.38/set). She had a nice match at Idaho on Oct. 31 when she hit an efficient .632 with a career-high 13 kills on 19 attempts to help lead NM State to another conference win. Murphy was also in on 10 blocks in the win over Kansas City, Nov. 7, with six of those blocks being solo.
“As far as middle hitters go, I put them (Murphy and Scott) up there with the best we have ever had,” Jordan said.
The two accounted for 505 kills during the season while posting a combined 249 total blocks.
Jordan and his No. 1 seeded team take on the winner of No. 4 Idaho and No. 5 Kansas City on Tuesday, Nov. 26 at 7:30 p.m. (MT) in Phoenix, Ariz. The match will be broadcast over the radio on KSNM AM 570 with Jay Sanderson giving the play-by-play.
2013 WAC Volleyball Postseason Award Winners
First Team School Yr. Pos. Hometown (Previous School)
Debora Araujo Bakersfield Sr. OH Belo Horizonte, Brazil (Western Nebraska CC)
Fernanda Gonçalves Bakersfield Sr. S Belo Horizonte, Brazil (Western Nebraska CC)
Gwen Murphy New Mexico State So. MH Elfrida, Ariz. (Valley Union)
Alyssa Schultz Idaho Jr. MB Issaquah, Wash. (Issaquah)
Desiree Scott New Mexico State Sr. MH Tucson, Ariz. (Catalina Foothills)
Lauren Stringham Utah Valley So. MB Kaysville, Utah (Davis)
McKenna Tait Utah Valley Jr. L South Jordan, Utah (Bingham)
Second Team School Yr. Pos. Hometown (Previous School)
Sydney Crimmins Kansas City So. RS Clay Center, Kan. (Clay Center Community)
Brookelyn Hall Utah Valley Sr. S Gilbert, Ariz. (Mesquite)
Iris Ivanis Seattle U Fr. OH Pozega, Croatia (Pozega)
Taryn Miller Kansas City So. L Blue Springs, Mo. (Blue Springs)
Molly O’Hagan Bakersfield Jr. MB Tonganoxie, Kan. (Tonganoxie)
Martina Samadan Seattle U So. MB Split, Croatia (Virginia Commonwealth)
Taylor Wilkinson Idaho Sr. MB Pocatello, Idaho (College of Southern Idaho)
All-Freshmen Team School Pos. Hometown (Previous School)
Kaylyn Brandt Kansas City S Sumner, Iowa (Sumner-Fredericksburg)
Ali Forde Idaho OH Woodinville, Wash. (Woodinville)
Iris Ivanis Seattle U OH Pozega, Croatia (Pozega)
Kerry Lane Seattle U S Tucson, Ariz. (Canyon del Oro)
Alisha Watson Texas-Pan American RS Round Rock, Texas (Round Rock)
Nakisha Willden Utah Valley OH South Jordan, Utah (Bingham)
WAC Player of the Year: Desiree Scott, New Mexico State
WAC Freshman of the Year: Iris Ivanis, Seattle U
WAC Coach of the Year: Mike Jordan, New Mexico State