(Posted November 4, 2002)

Huntingdon, PA - Juniata middle hitter Niki Mueller (Bishop Guilfoyle/Altoona) was named the Commonwealth Conference volleyball "player of the week," for the week ending October 26.

Mueller began the week with nine kills and a block with a .412 hitting percentage in a conference win over Elizabethtown. Her strong play continued at the "Wid" Guisler Invitational hosted by Juniata. Mueller averaged 12.25 kills and three blocks in the four-match tournament with a hitting percentage of .465 and added five serve aces in helping Juniata capture the tournament championship. She pounded out 14 kills in Juniata's victories over Muskingum and Alderson-Broaddus while hitting .478 and .423 in the two matches respectively. She finished out the tournament with nine kills in two games against California (Penn.) with a .600 hitting percentage. For her efforts, Mueller was named to the all-tournament team.

For the season, Mueller has 344 kills, with a hitting percentage of .386. She has also contributed 77 blocks and 30 serve aces, while averaging nearly four kills per game. She leads the team in kills, is second in hitting percentage among the regular starters, is first in blocks and is tied for third in aces. Mueller also sits atop the Commonwealth Conference statistical charts in hitting percentage, and ranks second in the conference in kills per game, and fifth in blocks per game.

Mueller is the lone senior, and captain on the Eagle volleyball team which is currently ranked third in NCAA Division III according to the most recent American Volleyball Coaches Association poll. Through Oct. 29, Juniata had a record of 27-2 including 17 straight victories. The Eagles also completed another Commonwealth Conference regular season without a loss. Juniata's conference winning streak now stands at 252 straight conference matches without a loss. The Eagles will take on three teams ranked in the AVCA top-15 including No. 1 Washington (Mo.) at the Wittenberg Quad-National November 1-2.

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