VCU Players, Rhode Island Setter Claim Volleyball Awards
NEWPORT NEWS, Va.—VCU junior Cecilia Aragao and her teammate junior Janelle Sykes have been named the Atlantic 10’s Volleyball Player and Defensive Player of the Week respectively. The league announced the awards Monday along with naming Rhode Island’s Callan Kinnan the Rookie of the Week for matches played from Sept. 17-23.
Aragao, a setter, was named to the NC State Courtyard Midtown Invitational All-Tournament Team after recording her first career triple-double (kills-assists-digs) when she provided 40 assists, 11 digs and 10 kills in a five-set win over Colgate. She helped VCU to a 2-2 week, averaging 9.24 assists and hitting .311 with 18 kills. Her best match as a setter came against NC State when she tallied 43 assists in just four sets, for a 10.75 average. She had a double-double in that match as well, registering 15 digs. A native of Recife, Brazil, she also averaged nearly two digs per set and 1.24 blocks per set to complete her strong all-around week.
Sykes averaged 1.76 blocks per set in the Rams four matches last week, including back-to-back double-digit performances. A middle blocker from Clifton, Va., she is averaging a team-best 1.38 blocks per set this season, spurred by 30 total blocks last week. She registered 11 blocks in a five-set loss to Wisconsin Saturday, then followed with 10 blocks in a four-set thriller with NC State that evening. Sykes began the week with back-to-back four-block performances.
Kinnan averaged 12.0 assists per set over the weekend, collecting 180 overall. The setter from Los Angeles had two matches with 50+ assists (vs. Dartmouth (57) and vs. UConn (56)). She had double-doubles against Dartmouth and New Hampshire and is quickly climbing the career assists charts at Rhody, currently ranking 24th with 425 assists after just 13 matches. Kinnan also had a team-best .375 attack percentage over the weekend, recording 12 kills opposite just three errors. She added 46 digs, 10 blocks and a pair of aces.