All-HCAC Awards announced
November 8, 2017
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University volleyball team capped off another outstanding season with two First Team All-Heartland Conference honorees in 2017. Juniors Bethany Martini (Pickerington/North) and Erin Weisgarber (Bolivar/Tuscarawas Valley) were honored by the coaches after leading Bluffton to a fifth straight HCAC tournament semi-final appearance. Senior Sydney Mohler (Lima/Central Catholic) secured Honorable Mention All-HCAC following her fourth season as Bluffton's starting libero.
Bethany Martini had a breakout season for the Beavers, leading the Heartland Conference by a considerable margin with 463 kills and a 4.25 kills per set average. The two-time HCAC Player of the Week moved to the top of Bluffton's single-season kills per set list and she is now third all-time with 463 kills on the year. Her record-setting junior campaign also pushed her 2.96 kills per set up to second on Bluffton's career list. Martini has 1,000 career kills in her sights (756) despite just five spikes in 30 sets as a freshman!
Erin Weisgarber conducted business as usual even though she saw 5,000 kills graduate over the past two seasons, including Bluffton's top two attackers and three of the top five all-time. Weisgarber handed out 1,021 assists (11th all-time), moving up to #3 on the all-time list with 3,392 for her career. She trails just Shauna Rowland (3,695) and Jayne Miller (4.275) following her junior campaign. The floor maestro also leads Bluffton with 9.92 assists per set for her career, almost one assist per set more than Shauna Rowland (8.93) at number two. She earned Heartland Conference Player of the Week after leading the Beavers to a 3-0 mark during the final week of the regular season. Her .242 career hitting percentage is also 6th all-time at Bluffton thanks to 412 kills against just 128 errors.
Capping off a historic career at Bluffton with Honorable Mention recognition is 2016 HCAC Defensive Player of the Year Sydney Mohler. The four-year starter at libero became the most prolific back row player in Bluffton University history, finishing with 2,193 career digs! She surpassed Brittany Roth's 2,108 to claim the top spot. Mohler's 619 digs this season are tied for 5th all-time and they placed her second in the Heartland Conference. Her 5.68 digs per set are 2nd all-time for a season while her 4.72 career DPS place her fourth all-time. She led the team with 47 aces, moving her up to 13th all time with 162 for her career.
The Beavers went to three straight NCAA Regionals with Mohler anchoring the back row. She led Bluffton to a superb 30-6 mark in the Heartland Conference, never finishing below second in the HCAC standings while winning the tournament three times.
Selected to the 2017 All-Freshman Team was Remi Bower (Hamler/Patrick Henry) who ranked #2 at Bluffton with 264 kills (2.44 KPS). She was 9th in the Heartland Conference and stands 5th all-time for kills by a freshman. Bower added 81 digs and 22 blocks for a total of 278.5 points.
In conjunction with the All-HCAC selections, the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference also announced the All-HCAC Sportsmanship Team for the fall of 2017. MARY JO BASH (Carey) was selected to the All-Sportsmanship Team from Bluffton. This award has been developed as part of a conference-wide sportsmanship initiative. Members of the All-HCAC Sportsmanship team are selected by the coaches and their teammates as individuals who demonstrate the ideals of positive sportsmanship both on and off the field/court of competition.
The Beavers have compiled a 243-173 record since Coach Yarnell took the reins in 2005. They have won at least 20 matches in six of the past ten years while going 66-22 in Heartland Conference action since 2008!