Volleyball's Niemer Adds Sports Imports/AVCA National Player of the Week

Sept. 21, 2010

CINCINNATI - University of Cincinnati senior outside hitter Stephanie Niemer (Erlanger, Ky./St. Henry) made BIG EAST Conference and UC volleyball history becoming the first player for either to be named the Sports Imports/American Volleyball Coaches Association Division I National Player of the Week. It was the first of two honors today as Niemer also picked up the National Player of Week award from The Collegiate Volleyball Update.

Niemer spearheaded UC's wins this past week over No. 5 Illinois, 3-2, and Purdue, 3-0 as it captured the title at the BIG EAST/Big Ten Challenge in Louisville, Ky. Niemer, the tournament Most Valuable Player, earned the honor after posting a combined 60 kills, five service aces, 23 digs, and five blocks and hitting .391 in the victories.

In the upset of No. 5 Illinois, she notched her seventh double-double of the season with 28 kills and 15 digs, but it was in UC's three-set sweep of Purdue where Niemer posted her strongest performance of the year, putting away a BIG EAST season-best 32 kills. It was her second 30-kill performance in Cincinnati's last three matches. She also totaled eight digs, three blocks, and two service aces against the Boilermakers.

With two wins at the BIG EAST/Big Ten Challenge, UC is 10-3 on the season, including a pair of wins vs. Top 25 teams. The victories also moved the previously unranked Bearcats into the AVCA Top 25 for the first time since the 2003 season.

UC travels to Morehead State Tuesday, Sept. 21, in its last non-conference match-up before taking on BIG EAST foes Seton Hall on Friday, Sept. 24 at 7:30 p.m. and Rutgers on Sunday, Sept. 26 at 2 p.m. at home in Fifth Third Arena.