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Four Juniata Volleyball Players Named to AVCA All-Region Team

(Posted November 19, 2001)

Huntingdon, PA - Senior outside hitter Brandy Workinger (Dallastown/Dallastown), freshman setter Carli Dale (Cochranton/Cochranton), junior middle hitter Niki Mueller (Bishop Guilfoyle/Altoona) and sophomore opposite Danielle Hart (Central/Roaring Spring) have all been named to the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Division III Mid-Atlantic all-region team. The Eagle foursome will now go on the national ballot for all-American laurels that will be announced in late November. In addition, Dale was selected as the Mid-Atlantic Region Freshman of the Year, which marks the second straight season that a Juniata player earned the honor. Hart was the region's freshman of the year last autumn. Workinger, who was a first-team all-American in 2000, and Hart are making their second consecutive appearance on the regional unit. In addition, Workinger and Hart were picked as first-team Commonwealth Conference all stars, while Mueller and Dale earned recognition on the second unit.

Workinger, who as the Commonwealth Most Valuable Player a year ago, was the conference's player of the week two times this fall. In addition, she was the AVCA/Sports Imports Division III national player of the week once. Workinger posted 20-or-more kills in a match three times this season, including a campaign-high 25 against California (Pa.) on September 7. For the year, she finished third in the conference in kills per game and sixth digs an outing. Through November 10, Workinger was averaging 3.88 kills and 3.91 digs per game. She was also named to the all-tournament team at the Washington (Mo.) National Invitational and she was the most valuable player at the Mercyhurst tournament. Workinger is currently fourth on the Juniata career charts in kills (1,708) and hitting attempts (4,078). In addition, she is second in all-time digs on College Hill (1,743).

Hart is currently first in the Eagle camp in total kills (471), kill average (3.99), hitting attempts (1,155) and aces (64). She is averaging 3.99 kills, 2.89 digs, 0.54 aces and 0.48 blocks per game through 36 matches this year. Hart is also hitting .281 from her opposite spot. She has reached double figures in kills 29 times, including a career-best 25 terminations on 60 tries against Edinboro on September 22. She had six aces in a match two times and she posted a personal-high 25 digs versus Mount Saint Joseph on October 12. In addition, she earned conference player of the week honors one time this fall and was selected to the all-tournament teams at the Mercyhurst and Guisler invitationals. Hart ended the regular season ranked second in the Commonwealth in kill average and ninth in hitting percentage.

Mueller was tabbed as a first-team all-conference member in 2000, and currently leads all Eagle hitters with her .332 hitting percentage and her blocking average of 0.87. This fall, she is posting 2.85 kills a game and has a club-high 98 rejections. She has hit .400 or better in a match 16 times and had a career-best 17 kills this past weekend during a 3-0 victory over Catholic in the finals of the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional. Mueller, who was named to the all-tournament teams at the ASICS Collegiate and Guisler invitationals and was the conference player of the week one time this year, reached double figures in kills on 12 occasions. She completed the regular season ranked second in the Commonwealth in hitting percentage, eighth in kill average and seventh in blocking average.

Dale, who was somehow not selected as the freshman of the year in the Commonwealth, has averaged 13.05 assists per game this fall, while bringing up 3.24 digs a showing as well. She became the first freshman to start at setter for the Eagles since Heather Blough '95 (now Pavlik), who is an assistant with the Juniata volleyball program. She had a season-best 78 assists during a match with Wittenberg on October 26 and posted 40 or more helpers in a match 21 times. Dale ended the regular season ranked first in the Commonwealth in assists per game and was also seventh in dig average and eighth in service ace average. For the year, she currently is tied for first on the team in ace average (0.54), is second in total aces (57) and fifth in total digs.
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Juniata, ranked sixth in this week's AVCA Division III poll, will take its 28-8 record into the NCAA Division III Quarterfinals this Saturday when it travels to second-ranked Trinity (TX) (35-4) for a 7:00 p.m. (CST) match. The winner will move on to the national semifinals/finals on November 30 and December 1 at a site that will be determined following play this weekend.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.