Make it the best at his position in back-to-back seasons for Carthage opposite Griffin Shields.
Off the Block announced Thursday that for the second consecutive year a nationwide voting committee selected Shields as the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. Division III National Opposite of the Year.
Shields finished his senior season leading the MCVL and seventh in the nation with a 3.81 kills per game average. The All-American also was among the national leaders with a .341 attack percentage and had 14 matches with double-digit kills, including a season-high 25 kills while hitting .452 in an upset victory against then-No. 3 Stevens Tech in March.
Shields earned 12 votes to edge out the runner-up Dominican opposite Luke Spicer by three votes and win the National Opposite of the Year. In addition, the other finalist Marymount opposite TJ Wiechecki came in third place.
A committee of 12 Division III head coaches voted for this national award. The top-three vote-getters for the award were named finalists and the student-athlete receiving the most votes was named the award winner.
Along with the National Opposite of the Year award, Off the Block annually presents four more Division III awards — the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Outside Attacker of the Year, the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Setter of the Year, the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Middle Attacker of the Year and the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Libero of the Year.
Off the Block is a college men’s volleyball website that launched in 2011 and is the nation’s leaders in college men’s volleyball coverage. Springbak, Inc. is the official sponsor the Division III national awards and produces high performance footwear used by professional athletes from the NFL, NBA, MLB and U.S. Olympic teams and the top college teams in the nation.
2017 Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Opposite of the Year (voting results)
1. Griffin Shields, Carthage — 12 votes
2. Luke Spicer, Dominican — 9 votes
3. TJ Wiechecki, Marymount — 5 votes
4. Jake Reed, Wentworth — 4 votes
5. Jake Roessler, SUNY New Paltz — 3 votes