(Posted February 7, 2005)

Huntingdon, PA - For the second time this season Juniata College junior outside hitter Matt Springer (William Allen/Allentown) has been named the Sports Imports/AVCA Division III Men's National Player of the Week for his efforts on the court for Juniata. The honor marks the 11th time a Juniata men's player has captured the national award, and the third time in four weeks this season that an Eagle has earned the recognition.

Springer helped Juniata capture its first EIVA Tait Division victory of the season as he pounded out a career-high 19 kills in Juniata's 3-0 victory over Princeton. The junior attacked at a .464 clip while chipping in four digs, an ace and a block in the victory. He also reached double figures in kills in Juniata's three-game match against 12th-ranked Division I foe Ohio State. Springer posted 12 kills with a .350 hitting percentage against the Buckeyes and added one block. For the week he finished with 31 kills, a .417 hitting percentage and averaged 5.67 points per game, just less than two points better than his season average for points per game.

"Matt has continually impressed us with his ability to produce regardless of the situation," Juniata head coach Ken Shibuya stated. "He has responded to the challenge of playing against bigger opponents and has responded every time we've gone to him. We're very pleased with what he's been able to do this year, and we see no reason why he won't continue to be a big factor."

Springer has been one of Juniata's most consistent all-around performers in the early season. Through seven games he ranks third on the team in kills with 63 and boasts an attack percentage of .364 which is second among the team's regular attackers. He has reached double figures in kills in four of the team's seven matches and has added 16 digs, six blocks and three serve aces.

Juniata has held the top spot in the CSTV/AVCA Division III Coaches Poll each week of the 2005 season and is 3-4 through seven matches on the year. The Eagles are 1-1 in the EIVA Tait Division and each of the team's four set-backs have come against Division I opponents. The Eagles return to action Wednesday against Tait Division opponent George Mason.


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Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.