A nationwide voting committee selected Sacred Heart libero Joshua Ayzenberg, Stanford libero Evan Enriques and Long Beach State libero Andrew Sato as finalists for the annual Erik Shoji Award.
The Erik Shoji Award, which is named after the former Stanford All-American and U.S. Olympian libero, is presented to the nation’s best libero in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball during the regular season.
Ayzenberg ended the regular season second in the nation with a 2.98 digs per game average. The All-EIVA selection also had at least 10 digs in 13 matches, including a season-high 22 digs in an upset victory against No. 13 Penn State in February.
Enriques, the 2016 recipient of the inaugural Erik Shoji Award, was second in the MPSF and in the nation’s top 10 with a 2.42 digs per game average. In addition, the junior had 12 matches with double-digit digs.
Sato, who set the school record in March for career digs, led the MPSF and was seventh in the nation averaging 2.48 digs per game as he helped No. 2/2 Long Beach State win a share of the MPSF regular season title. The All-MPSF selection also had double-digit digs in 10 regular season with a season-high 23 digs occurring in a four-game victory against St. Francis.
The voting committee for the Erik Shoji Award was comprised of about 25 college men’s volleyball head coaches and volleyball reporters from around the nation.
The top three vote-getters were named finalists for the Erik Shoji Award. The winner of the Erik Shoji Award and the total voting results will be announced Thursday, April 27.
This is the second year of the Erik Shoji Award, which is one of several end of season awards presented by Off the Block. Among the other national awards includes the Lloy Ball Award to the nation’s top setter, the Bryan Ivie Award to the nation’s top opposite, the Karch Kiraly Award to the nation’s top outside attacker and the Ryan Millar Award to the nation’s top middle attacker.
Off the Block is a national award winning website that launched in 2011 and is the nation’s leaders in college men’s volleyball coverage.
ERIK SHOJI AWARD FINALISTS
Joshua Ayzenberg, Sacred Heart
Evan Enriques, Stanford
Andrew Sato, Long Beach State