The Big Ten released its postseason awards on Wednesday and Nebraska was well represented. Five Huskers made all-conference teams while senior setter Brooke Smith was chosen as the team’s sportsmanship honoree.
Senior outside hitter Mikaela Foecke (a unanimous selection), senior libero Kenzie Maloney and sophomore middle blocker Lauren Stivrins were named first-team All-Big Ten while setter Nicklin Hames and middle-blocker Callie Schwarzenbach were selected for the seven-woman All-Freshman Team.
The honor was Foecke’s second after she was also named to the first team as a junior. She put up 3.72 kills per set (the highest average for a Husker since Kelsey Robinson in 2013) on .307 hitting while also chipping in 2.66 digs per set as a six-rotation player. Foecke led the Huskers with 38 service aces this season. Foecke was a Second-Team AVCA All-American last season and garnered four Big Ten Player of the Week honors this season.
Maloney is a first-time honoree after leading the Huskers to a nation-leading .130 opponent attack percentage while averaging a team-best 4.07 digs per set. She is also third on the team in aces with 34. Maloney was named Nebraska Invite MVP as well as the Best Libero at the Americas Players Challenge.
Stivrins came on strong over the second half of the season as she built up more of a connection with Hames and she finished the season at 2.23 kills per set on .401 hitting. Stivrins finished third in the Big Ten in attack percentage and posted the best number for a Husker since Brooke Delano in 2010. Stivrins added 1.21 blocks per set and served up 24 aces. She took home two Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week honors as well as one Big Ten Player of the Week plaudit.
Hames won the starting setter job as a true freshman, replacing an all-time program great in Kelly Hunter, and she guided a young team to a third-place finish in the Big Ten and a top-10 seed in the NCAA Tournament. She was a two-time Big Ten Freshman of the Week and averaged 10.28 assists and 3.31 digs per set while serving up 36 aces, the second-most on the team. With 21 double-doubles this season, Hames posted the second-highest total in program history behind Jordan Larson’s 22 in 2006.
Schwarzenbach made an immediate defensive impact at the net this season, averaging 1.43 blocks per set, the second-highest average in the Big Ten. With 159 total blocks, she is two away from breaking the freshman record at Nebraska set by Tracy Stalls in 2004. She also chipped in 1.13 kills on .294 hitting.
Smith took home the sportsmanship honor for the second time in her career as she was also chosen as Nebraska’s recipient as a sophomore in 2016.
Nebraska also announced that its first-round NCAA Tournament match against Hofstra will be televised on NET with Larry Punteney and Kathi Wieskamp on the call. If the Huskers advance to the second round on Saturday, NET will also televise that match.
First serve for the Huskers and Pride is set for 7 p.m.
2018 All-Big Ten Volleyball
- Ali Bastianelli, Sr., Illinois*
- Jordyn Poulter, Sr., Illinois*
- Jacqueline Quade, Jr., Illinois*
- Erika Pritchard, So., Maryland
- Carly Skjodt, Sr., Michigan*
- Regan Pittman, So., Minnesota
- Stephanie Samedy, So., Minnesota*
- Samantha Seliger-Swenson, Sr., Minnesota*
- Mikaela Foecke, Sr., Nebraska*
- Kenzie Maloney, Sr., Nebraska
- Lauren Stivrins, So., Nebraska
- Jonni Parker, Fr., Penn State
- Kendall White, Sr., Penn State*
- Sherridan Atkinson, Sr., Purdue*
- Blake Mohler, Jr., Purdue
- Madison Duello, Jr., Wisconsin
- Sydney Hilley, So., Wisconsin
- Dana Rettke, So., Wisconsin
Ashlyn Fleming, Jr., Illinois
- Deyshia Lofton, Jr., Indiana
- Taylor Louis, Sr., Iowa
- Jenna Lerg, Sr., Michigan
- Alexis Hart, Jr., Minnesota
- Taylor Morgan, Jr., Minnesota
- Adanna Rollins, Fr., Minnesota
- Kaitlyn Hord, Fr., Penn State
- Bryanna Weiskircher, Sr., Penn State
- Paige Jones, Michigan
- CC McGraw, Minnesota
- Adanna Rollins, Minnesota
- Nicklin Hames, Nebraska
- Callie Schwarzenbach, Nebraska
- Kaitlyn Hord, Penn State
- Jonni Parker, Penn State
Player of the Year: Samantha Seliger-Swenson, Sr., Minnesota
Defensive Player of the Year: Kendall White, Sr., Penn State
Co-Setter of the Year: Jordyn Poulter, Sr., Illinois
Co-Setter of the Year: Samantha Seliger-Swenson, Sr., Minnesota
Freshman of the Year: Jonni Parker, Penn State
Coach of the Year (Coaches and Media): Hugh McCutcheon, Minnesota
- Beth Prince, Jr., Illinois
- Kamryn Malloy, So., Indiana
- Molly Kelly, Sr., Iowa
- Abigail Bentz, Sr., Maryland
- Maddy Abbott, Sr., Michigan
- Sam McLean, Jr., Michigan State
- Lauren Barnes, So., Minnesota
- Brooke Smith, Sr., Nebraska
- Allie Lindroth, Jr., Northwestern
- Camry Halm, Jr., Ohio State
- Kristin Krause, So., Penn State
- Erin Williams, Sr., Purdue
- Beka Kojadinovic, So., Rutgers
- Tionna Williams, Sr., Wisconsin
*denotes UNANIMOUS SELECTION
Jacob is in his third year with Hail Varsity covering Husker athletics. He has also written extensively for SB Nation’s Bright Side of the Sun and The Creightonian. His love of basketball can best be described as an obsession and if you need to find him, he’s probably in a gym somewhere watching, coaching or playing hoops.