Lake Merchen – UC Santa Cruz
Junior, Outside Hitter, 6-3 (Clovis, Calif. – Buchanan High School)
The UC Santa Cruz Banana Slug Men's Volleyball team hit the road to snowy Rochester, New York for four matches in two days, where they won all of them while only dropping one set. Merchen registered double-digit kill totals in their first three matches, and never hit lower than .333. Defensively, he totaled 22 digs and seven blocks, including four in their victory over the host and tenth-ranked Golden Flyers. Merchen was named to the Golden Flyer Invitational All-Tournament Team.
"Lake is a hell of a player and is very deserving of this recognition. He does not demand respect from his peers: he laces up every day and earns it," said head coach Paul Leon. "We are very fortunate to have a player of his caliber strengthening our roster in practice and setting the tone in competition with his dominant plays.
"Don't be surprised if this is a sign that he is just getting started."
This is the ninth time a Banana Slug has been named the Sports Imports/AVCA Player of the Week, and the second for Merchen, who won it on April 5th of last year.
Individual Weekly Stats
Sets Played: 11
Hitting %: .478
February 3: Medaille, W 3-0; Elmira, W 3-0
February 4: @ No. 10 Nazareth, W 3-1; No. 14 Rivier, W 3-0
AVCA Ranking: No. 4