The best players in McKendree’s program history are closing out the decade earning a college men’s volleyball honor.
Off the Block announced on Saturday the seven players selected to the McKendree All-Decade Starting Lineup presented by Off the Block.
The All-Decade Starting Lineup recognizes the best players to compete with a team since 2010. Similar to the starting lineup for a match, the All-Decade honor is comprised of a setter, opposite and libero along with two outside attackers and middle attackers.
The Off the Block staff determined the All-Decade Starting Lineup using a variety of factors including career statistical performance and the team’s overall success when a player was a member of the program.
This is also part of a series from Off the Block to celebrate the end of the decade in college men’s volleyball. Off the Block throughout the rest of 2019 will release an All-Decade Starting Lineup for every NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball team.
McKendree started its program in 2014 and has twice advanced to the MIVA Tournament semifinals since joining the conference in 2015. In addition, the Bearcats finished last season at No. 3 in the Off the Block Division II National Coaches Poll.
Off the Block is a national award winning website that was established in 2011 and is the nation’s leader in college men’s volleyball.
McKendree All-Decade Starting Lineup presented by Off the Block
Setter: Pasquale Fiduccia
Opposite: Maalik Walker
Outside attacker: Nolan Rueter
Outside attacker: Jared Wilcox
Middle attacker: Wyatt Patterson
Middle attacker: Brendan Schmidt
Libero: Zach Thompson
Pasquale Fiduccia (2015-18)
Awards and honors: 2017 All-MIVA Honorable Mention
Fiduccia set the program’s career record with 3,275 assists and guided the offense to more than a .250 attack percentage in back-to-back seasons. The four-year starter finished each of his final two seasons in the nation’s top 10 for assists, including a career-best 10.05 assists per game average in 2017. Along with his offensive performance, Fiduccia is one of three Bearcats in program history to have more than 500 career digs.
Wyatt Patterson (2014-17)
Awards and honors: 2017 Second-Team All-MIVA, 2016 All-MIVA Honorable Mention
Patterson concluded his college career with a program-record .407 attack percentage and holds the three best single-season attack percentages in program history. The middle attacker in his senior season had a career-best .503 attack percentage and did not commit more than three attack errors in a match during the entire season. He also had double-digit kills in five matches and for the second consecutive year had 200 kills.Patterson defensively has the second-most career blocks in program history at 289 and in 2017 was among the conference leaders averaging 0.95 blocks per game.
Nolan Rueter (2015-18)
Awards and honors: 2018 Second-Team All-MIVA
Rueter remains the McKendree record holder with both 933 career kills and 65 career aces. The outside attacker finished in the conference’s top 10 for kills in each of his final two seasons, including averaging a career-best 2.84 kills per game in 2017. In addition, Rueter in his senior season was in the top 15 of the MIVA with a 1.82 digs per game average. Rueter had at least 100 digs in all four seasons and is second in McKendree’s program history with 583 career digs.
Brendan Schmidt (2014-18)
Awards and honors: 2018 First-Team All-MIVA, 2018 Off the Block Grow the Game Challenge All-Tournament Team, 2017 All-MIVA Honorable Mention
Schmidt set the program record with 374 career blocks and is the only player in McKendree’s program history to have more than 100 blocks in a season — accomplishing the feat twice. As a sophomore, the middle attacker led the MIVA and was seventh in the nation with a 1.19 blocks per game average. He also had a career-best 1.21 blocks per game average during his junior season. Schmidt had more than a .300 attack percentage in all four seasons, including being seventh in the nation hitting a career-high .394 during his senior season.
Zach Thompson (2016-19)
Awards and honors: N/A
Thompson had back-to-back seasons in the conference’s top five averaging more than 2.00 digs per game. He also concluded his college career setting the program record with 759 career digs. Thompson in one of his final college matches finished with a season-high 16 digs as McKendree beat Ball State in the 2019 MIVA Tournament quarterfinals for its second postseason win program history.
Maalik Walker (2014-17)
Awards and honors: 2017 Second-Team All-MIVA
Walker in his senior season was in third in the MIVA with a 3.40 kills per game average and had at least 15 kills in seven matches. Among his top performances that season featured a match-high 21 kills on a .417 attack percentage in a near road upset against then-No. 5 Pepperdine. Walker the previous season was in the conference’s top 10 averaging 3.06 kills per game. He also led all players with 13 kills while hitting .333 as McKendree upset Ball State in the MIVA Tournament quarterfinals for its first postseason win in program history.
Jared Wilcox (2015-18)
Awards and honors: 2016 All-MIVA Honorable Mention
Wilcox finished his senior season leading the Bearcats and in the top 10 of the MIVA with a 2.95 kills per game average on a career-best .264 attack percentage. He also had a match-high 20 kills while hitting .302 in an upset victory against Lewis. This was the second season during his college career that Wilcox was among the conference leaders in kills. As a freshman, Wilcox had a 3.05 kills per game average and set the school’s single-season record for kills that still stands almost five years later.