Sept. 2, 2008
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - After leading the University of Tennessee volleyball team to the Marquette Kickoff Tournament title with three wins in two days, sophomore outside hitter Nikki Fowler has been named the Southeastern Conference Offensive Player of the Week, the league office announced Tuesday. The Dallas, Texas, native was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player after leading the Lady Vols with 41 kills over course of the two-day competition.
"It is great to see Nikki get recognized for her play this past weekend," UT Head Coach Rob Patrick said. "The most impressive thing to me was the fact that she did not have one gaudy statistic, but played extremely well all over the court. She continues to impress me with her daily improvement in practice and her ability to translate that into success during match play."
The award is the first of Fowler's young career, although she earned freshman of the week honors on three different occasions last season and was named the SEC Freshman of the Year.
In addition to her team-high kill total, Fowler paced the squad with 90 total attacks and ranked in a tie for second with 11 blocks over the weekend. She also added 19 digs and three aces as Tennessee swept Chattanooga on Fri., Aug. 29, and took out Houston and Marquette in five and four sets, respectively, the following day.
Tennessee will next return to the hardwood when it travels to the "Centennial State" to compete in the Denver Pioneer Classic this weekend in Denver, Colo. First up for the Lady Vols will be Iowa at 5 p.m. MT on Sept. 5. The following day, they will take on Virginia at 10:30 a.m. MT before squaring off with host-team Denver at 7:30 p.m. MT.