Wittenberg's Wildemann Named AVCA All-American

Wittenberg junior setter Karen Wildemann was a first-team selection on the 2017 AVCA All-America Team
Wittenberg junior setter Karen Wildemann was a first-team selection on the 2017 AVCA All-America Team

Story Courtesy of the Wittenberg Sports Information Department

2017 AVCA Div. III All-America Team

The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) announced the 37th annual AVCA All-America teams for NCAA Division III women's volleyball on Tuesday, November 14. The awards will be presented Novevember 15th at the NCAA Division III Women's Volleyabll National Championship banquet in Grand Rapids, Michigan, at Calvin College where the 2017 AVCA Division III Player of the Year will also be announced.

Wittenberg junior setter Karen Wildemann (Columbus, IN/North) earned AVCA First-Team All-America honors after putting together an impressive 2017 campaign. Wildemann was most recently named the Most Valuable Player of the Great Lakes Regional last weekend after the Tigers ran through match-play to earn a spot in the national quarterfinals on November 16.

"Karen has worked very hard to achieve this honor. She is a very driven competitor and natural leader. As a 4.0 student, she has found a way to strike the perfect balance of commitment to her team, and excellence in the classroom. I couldn't be prouder of Karen," said head coach Paco Labrador.

Wildemann put together a junior campaign that featured 899 assists (9.8 per-set), 215 digs (2.36 per-set) and 121 total kills. The setter also recorded 332 service aces for the Tigers, on her way to a first-team All-North Coast Athletic Conference selection. Wildemann also recorded two triple-doubles in 2017, her first against then #3 Emory with 11 kills, 41 assists and 10 digs. The feat was then completed again by the junior against NCAC foe Denison after Wildemann put together a match of 10 kills, 47 assists, and 12 digs.

Wildemann helped lead the Tigers to a 20-0 start to the season, and a number one overall ranking in the AVCA Top-25 Coaches' Poll from mid-September until the end of October. The Tigers also tout an unblemished 8-0 record in NCAC play for the seventh consecutive season, and Wildemann was also named to the AVCA's Great Lakes All-Region First Team upon her stellar play in 2017.

The Tigers ran away with the 2017 Great Lakes Regional at Otterbein University, downing Penn State Behrend, 3-0, #19 Juniata, 3-1, and #20 Ohio Northern, 3-0. As the region's MVP, Wildemann led the Tigers to their eighth regional championship in program history after putting together a weekend that included 13 kills, 13 digs and 94 assists.

Wildemann now becomes the eighth AVCA First Team All-America selection under Labrador's guidance, and the 31st All-America selection overall. The Tigers have had at least one All-America selection in every season since 2002. Wildemann joins senior Maddie Fischer (Minerva, OH/Minerva) and Aubrey Cox (Tipp City, OH/Tippecanoe) as current Tigers that have earned All-America honors from the AVCA. 

Four additional NCAC players were named to the 2017 AVCA Div. III Honorable Mention All-America Team, including Ohio Wesleyan senior outside hitter Iris Anderson (Elk Grove, CA/Christian Brothers), Wittenberg's Maddie Fischer, DePauw junior outside hitter Suzanne Peters (Ft. Wayne, IN/Homestead) and DePauw sophomore right-side hitter Morgan Stearley (Center Point, IN/Northview).

   

Iris Anderson Maddie Fischer Suzanne Peters Morgan Stearley