An All-American who helped Vassar reach the NCAA Tournament for the first time in its program history is capping off his junior season with another national award.
Off the Block announced Tuesday that a nationwide voting committee selected Vassar’s Matthew Knigge as the 2017 recipient of the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. Division III National Middle Attacker of the Year.
Knigge became the second Vassar player to be a two-time First-Team All-American as he finished the season with a nation-best 1.36 blocks per game average. He also was in the nation’s top 10 with a .426 attack percentage and had double-digit kills in 17 matches to help Vassar win the UVC regular season title and a NCAA Tournament at-large bid.
Knigge received more votes than the combined vote total for all the other players who garnered votes for the National Middle Attacker the Year.
SUNY New Paltz middle attacker Steven Woessner finished in second place with five votes — 15 fewer votes than Knigge. In addition, Springfield middle attacker Kyle Jasuta came in third place earning four votes.
The voting committee for this national award was comprised of 12 Division III head coaches from around the nation.
The top-three vote-getters for the award were named finalists and the student-athlete receiving the most votes was named the award winner.
Besides the National Middle Attacker of the Year, Off the Block annually presents four more Division III awards — the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Opposite of the Year, the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Setter of the Year, the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Outside 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 Middle Attacker of the Year (voting results)
1. Matthew Knigge, Vassar — 20 votes
2. Steven Woessner, SUNY New Paltz — 5 votes
3. Kyle Jasuta, Springfield — 4 votes
4. Daniel Toth, Endicott — 3 votes
5. Steven Tarquinio, Hunter — 2 votes
6. Kyle Seeley, Juniata — 1 vote