Pepperdine's Riecks and Endicott's Witkofsky Honored as Sports Imports/AVCA National Players of the Week
Cory Riecks, a 6-7 outside hitter for then-No. 4 Pepperdine University, has been named the Sports Imports/AVCA Division I-II Men's National Player of the Week. The junior earns the award after propelling his team to two home Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) victories last week. In the Waves' first match, a sweep of Pacific, Riecks hit .429 with 17 kills, two blocks and two digs. In Pepperdine's next match, a whitewashing of then-No. 2 Stanford, Riecks turned in another 17-kill outing, while this time only committing one error, for a sizzling .800 attack percentage. He also chipped in two blocks and two digs in the match. For the week, Riecks hit an impressive .583, while averaging 5.67 kills and 6.00 points per game. This is the first time Riecks has earned Sports Imports/AVCA Men's Division I-II Player of the Week accolades and marks the 24th time a Pepperdine athlete has taken home the award. The last Wave to earn the nod was Tyler Jaynes on February 8, 2010. Pepperdine is coached by Marv Dunphy.
A.J. Witkofsky, a 6-4 senior middle blocker for Endicott College has been named the Sports Imports/AVCA Men's Division III National Player of the Week for his efforts in guiding the Gulls to their own Endicott Invitational title with a perfect 4-0 record. Witkofsky began the week with five kills and seven blocks, while seeing limited action in Endicott's sweep of Hilbert. In his next match, a 3-1 win over Emmanuel, Witkofsky smashed 25 kills and added 10 blocks, three digs and two aces. He continued his hot play with a 19-kill, seven dig, two-block outing in the Gulls' sweep of then-No. 7 Rivier. The offensive spark plug concluded the tournament with a double-double, totaling 23 kills, 13 digs and five blocks in Endicott's 3-2 win over MIT. For the week, Witkofsky averaged 6.39 kills, 1.64 digs, 1.71 blocks and 6.39 points per game and hit .393, en route to earning tournament MVP honors. This marks the third time an athlete from Endicott has been awarded Sports Imports/AVCA Men's Division III National Player of the Week accolades, with Witkofsky laying claim to all three nods. He last earned the distinction February 1, 2010. The Gulls are coached by Tim Byram.