Four Nebraska volleyball players were honored Tuesday, as the 2012 All-Big Ten team was announced. Lauren Cook, Gina Mancuso and Hannah Werth claimed first-team All-Big Ten selections, while Meghan Haggerty earned All-Freshman honors and Allison McNeal was selected as a Sportsmanship Award honoree. It is Werth’s third consecutive All-Conference honor, while Cook and Mancuso were honored for the second straight year.
Mancuso earned a unanimous All-Big Ten award after posting 377 total kills on the season and an average of 3.43 kills per set, while ranking 10th in the Big Ten in kills. She has recorded nine double-doubles on the year and has recorded at least 10 kills in 22 matches this season, posting a season-high 20 kills three times in 2012. She has hit .300 or better in 11 of the Huskers’ 20 Big Ten contests as a senior. She also ranks 10th in the conference in service aces with an average of 0.28 per set.
Lauren Cook averaged 11.04 assists per set and 1,214 total assists. She ranks fourth in the league in assists, while notching a team-best 17 double-doubles (assists-digs). Cook helped Nebraska hit .300 or better in 15 out of 29 matches in 2012, including a season-high .471 hitting percentage against Iowa on Nov. 21. She has totaled 50 or more assists in six times in 2012, including a season-high 56 against UCLA on Aug. 25.
Werth capped her senior season with the third-straight All-Conference honors of her career, after earning first-team honors in 2012. She is averaging 3.06 kills per set and has 321 total kills on the season. She ranks second on the team in kills and is first in digs with 338 on the year and an average of 3.22 digs per set. She owns 14 double-doubles on the season and has totaled at least 10 kills in 18 matches, while notching at least 10 digs in 19 matches.
Haggerty earned unanimous All-Freshman Team honors after an outstanding inaugural year with the Huskers. She made an immediate impact for Nebraska, becoming just the eighth true freshman to start a season opener during John Cook’s career at NU. She posted a team-high 17 kills against UCLA, the most by a Nebraska middle blocker since Tracy Stalls tallied 17 against UCLA during the 2006 National Semifinal match. With a hitting percentage of .348 on the season, she leads all Huskers hitters in efficiency. Haggerty is also second on the team in blocks with 104 on the year and an average of 1.00 blocks per set.
The Big Ten also recognizes 12 Sportsmanship Award honorees as student-athletes who have distinguished themselves through sportsmanship and ethical behavior. These student-athletes must also be in good academic standing and have demonstrated good citizenship outside of the sports-competition setting. McNeal received the honor for her contributions this season. She has 19 kills on the year and a total of 21 blocks.
The Huskers open the NCAA Tournament on Thursday, Nov. 29, when they face the University of Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks at the NU Coliseum. The match is set to start at 7 p.m., or 30 minutes after the 4:30 p.m. match between Northern Iowa and Kansas State. The first-round winners will then meet on Friday, Nov. 30 at 7 p.m.