Illinois State volleyball star Courtney Pence, who leads all Division I players with 7.45 digs per set, has been named the Missouri Valley Conference Defensive Player of the Week for the second-straight week, the league announced on Tuesday.

A junior libero from Springfield, Pence was named to the all-tournament team at Saint Louis’ Marcia E. Hamilton Classic over the weekend, marking her second-straight week earning all-tournament honors.

Pence averaged 7.18 digs per set in three matches at St. Louis while adding 13 assists and a pair of aces.

Pence recorded her best performance Saturday against Kennesaw State, tallying 36 digs to tie the sixth most in ISU history.

The Redbirds (2-4) play their home opener at 7 p.m. Friday against Dayton in the Redbird Classic, which concludes Saturday as ISU faces Seton Hall at 12:30 p.m. and Cincinnati at 7 p.m.


CCIW honors Staley: IWU safety Trevor Staley has been named the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin Defensive Football Player of the Week.

A junior from Lake Zurich, Staley had a team-high 10 tackles (seven solo) and one tackle-for-loss in a 17-10 upset of then-No. 3 Wisconsin-Whitewater. It was only the Warhawks' third nonconference loss since 2005.

North Central’s Austin Breunig was named the Offensive Player of the Week after gaining 228 all-purpose yards during the Cardinals’ 33-31 win over Robert Morris-Chicago. He rushed 27 times for 125 yards and one touchdown and caught three passes for 94 yards and one touchdown.

Wheaton's Stefan Knoerr was named the Special Teams Player of the Week after converting field goals from 32 and 38 yards as well as three extra-point attempts during the Thunder’s 57-14 win at Benedictine.

Soccer players honored: IWU's Cameron Hindel and Kelli McCarthy were selected as CCIW Women's Soccer Players of the Week. 

Hindel, a freshman forward from Batavia, tallied three goals and an assist as the Titans opened with two wins. In a 3-2 win over Luther, she had two goals. She also scored and had an assist in a 4-0 win over Kenyon.

McCarthy, a freshman goalkeeper from San Diego, allowed two goals on 14 shots faced. She made six saves against Luther and two against Kenyon.


Sports Writer for The Pantagraph.

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