Off the Block announces winners of 2021 College Men’s Volleyball National Awards

Photo by Fabiana Huffaker

Off the Block unveiled Wednesday the winners for all 11 of the NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball national awards that it annually presents.

A nationwide voting committee of more than 25 NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball coaches and volleyball media determined the finalists and winners. The top three vote-getters for each award were named finalists, and the individual receiving the most votes will be named the award winner.

LLOY BALL AWARD

Photo courtesy of UC Santa Barbara athletics

2021 Lloy Ball Award winner: Casey McGarry, UC Santa Barbara

About the award
The Lloy Ball Award is given to the nation’s best setter in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball during the regular season. The annual award is named after the former U.S. Olympic gold medalist and IPFW All-American setter Lloy Ball and is selected by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
McGarry is second in the nation with a 10.87 assists per game average and guided the Gauchos to the seventh-best attack percentage in the nation at .318. The setter also was in the nation’s top 15 with a 2.19 digs per game average as he helped lead UC Santa Barbara to the Big West championship.

2021 Lloy Ball Award finalists
Kevin Kauling, Lewis
Casey McGarry, UC Santa Barbara
Wil Stanley, BYU
Jakob Thelle, Hawai’i

BRYAN IVIE AWARD

Photo courtesy of Hawai’i athletics

2021 Bryan Ivie Award winner: Rado Parapunov, Hawai’i

About the award
The Bryan Ivie Award is given to the nation’s best opposite in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball during the regular season. The annual award is named after the former U.S. Olympian and USC All-American opposite Bryan Ivie and is selected by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
Parapunov was third in the nation 4.41 kills per game average on a .340 attack percentage. The opposite en route to helping the Rainbow Warriors earn the No. 1 overall seed to the NCAA Tournament had double-digit kills in every match this season, including a season-high 27 kills in a five-game victory against Long Beach State in April.

2021 Bryan Ivie Award finalists:
Randy DeWeese, UC Santa Barbara
Gabi Garcia Fernandez, BYU
Rado Parapunov, Hawai’i

KARCH KIRALY AWARD

Photo courtesy of Lewis athletics

2021 Karch Kiraly Award winner: Ryan Coenen, Lewis

About the award
The Karch Kiraly Award is given to the nation’s best outside attacker in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball during the regular season. The annual award is named after the former U.S. Olympic gold medalist and UCLA All-American outside attacker and is selected by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
Coenen was second in the nation with a 4.43 kills per game average on a career-best .347 attack percentage, including having at least 20 kills in five matches. The senior outside attacker also was in the nation’s top 40 with a 0.85 blocks per game average and among the team leaders with a 0.29 aces per game average as he helped the Flyers repeat as MIVA champions.

2021 Karch Kiraly Award finalists:
Tobi Azeez, Mount Olive
Ryan Coenen, Lewis
Davide Gardini, BYU

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RYAN MILLAR AWARD

Photo courtesy of Hawai’i athletics

2021 Ryan Millar Award winner: Patrick Gasman, Hawai’i

About the award
The Ryan Millar Award is given to the nation’s best middle attacker in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball during the regular season. The annual award is named after former BYU All-American and U.S. Olympian Ryan Millar and is selected by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
Gasman led the nation with a career-high .500 attack percentage and had at least five kills in all but two matches this season. The senior middle attacker who helped Hawai’i earn the No. 1 seed to the NCAA Tournament also was sixth in the nation with a 1.22 blocks per game average, including having a season-high nine blocks in a victory against UC Santa Barbara in March.

2021 Ryan Millar Award finalists:
Patrick Gasman, Hawai’i
Tyler Mitchem, Lewis
Keenan Sanders, UC Santa Barbara

ERIK SHOJI AWARD

Photo courtesy of Hawai’i

2021 Erik Shoji Award winner: Gage Worsley, Hawai’i

About the award
The Erik Shoji Award is given to the nation’s best libero in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball during the regular season. The annual award is named after the current U.S. starting libero and former Stanford All-American libero Erik Shoji and is selected by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
Worsley was in the nation’s top 10 with a 2.32 digs per game average and had double-digit digs in five matches to help the Rainbow Warriors earn the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament. The libero also led Hawai’i with 353 service receptions and had a 96 percent successful reception rate.

2021 Erik Shoji Award finalists:
Mason Briggs, Long Beach State
Michal Podgorzak, Limestone
Gage Worsley, Hawai’i

DIVISION II NATIONAL PLAYER OF THE YEAR

Photo courtesy of Lewis athletics

2021 Division II National Player of the Year winner: Ryan Coenen, Lewis

About the award
The Division II National Player of the year is given to the nation’s best player on a NCAA Division II men’s volleyball team during the regular season. A nationwide voting committee of coaches and media members select the winner of the award.

Season recap
Coenen was second in the nation with a 4.43 kills per game average on a career-best .347 attack percentage, including having at least 20 kills in five matches. The senior outside attacker also was in the nation’s top 40 with a 0.85 blocks per game average and among the team leaders with a 0.29 aces per game average as he helped the Flyers repeat as MIVA champions.

2021 Division II National Player of the Year finalists:
Tobi Azeez, Mount Olive
Ryan Coenen, Lewis
Tyler Mitchem, Lewis

NICOLAS SZERSZEN AWARD

Photo courtesy of Hawai’i athletics

2021 Nicolas Szerszen Award winner: Rado Parapunov, Hawai’i

About the award
The Nicolas Szerszen Award is presented to the best non-U.S. born player in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball during the regular season. The annual award is named after the former Ohio State All-American outside attacker. It is selected by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
Parapunov was third in the nation 4.41 kills per game average on a .340 attack percentage. The Bulgarian native en route to helping the Rainbow Warriors earn the No. 1 overall seed to the NCAA Tournament had double-digit kills in every match this season, including a season-high 27 kills in a five-game victory against Long Beach State in April.

2021 Nicolas Szerszen Award finalists:
Tobi Azeez, Mount Olive
Rado Parapunov, Hawai’i
Sotiris Siapanis, Ohio State

STEVE SHONDELL AWARD

Photo courtesy of Hawai’i athletics

2021 Steve Shondell Award winner: Gage Worsley, Hawai’i

About the award
The Steve Shondell Award recognizes the best passer in NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball during the regular season. The annual national award is named after the Hall of Fame coach and former Ball State setter and is determined by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
Worsley led Hawai’i with 353 service receptions and had a 96 percent successful reception rate as he helped the Rainbow Warriors earn the No. 1 overall seed to the NCAA Tournament.

2021 Steve Shondell Award finalists:
Mason Briggs, Long Beach State
Colton Cowell, Hawai’i
Gage Worsley, Hawai’i
Michal Podgorzak, Limestone

DAIN BLANTON DIVERSITY AWARD

Photo courtesy of Lewis athletics

2021 Dain Blanton Diversity Award winner: Tyler Mitchem, Lewis

About the award
The Dain Blanton Diversity Award recognizes the top NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball player during the regular season of a minority ethnicity. The annual national award is named after former Pepperdine outside attacker and Olympic gold medalist Dain Blanton and is determined by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
Mitchem was third in the nation with a .478 attack percentage and had double-digit kills in 10 matches, including a season-high 16 kills and zero errors on a .889 attack percentage in a sweep against Ball State in March. The middle attacker also was third in the a nation with a 1.28 blocks per game average as he helped the Flyers win back-to-back MIVA championships.

2021 Dain Blanton Diversity Award finalists:
Tobi Azeez, Mount Olive
Gabi Garcia Fernandez, BYU
Tyler Mitchem, Lewis

NATIONAL BLOCKER OF THE YEAR

Photo courtesy of McKendree athletics

2021 National Blocker of the Year winner: Lucas Galifos, McKendree

About the award
The National Blocker of the Year is annually awarded to the NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball player with the best front-row defensive performance during the regular season. This was the first national award organized by Off the Block and each year is selected by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
Galifos had a nation-best 1.51 blocks per game average and had at least five blocks in nine matches as he helped McKendree earn its highest national ranking in program history. Among his top performances included a season-high 11 blocks in a conference victory against Purdue Fort Wayne in March.

2021 National Blocker of the Year finalists:
Simon Andersen, Long Beach State
Lucas Galifos, McKendree
Patrick Gasman, Hawai’i

NATIONAL SERVER OF THE YEAR

Photo courtesy of Penn State athletics

2021 National Server of the Year winner: Cal Fisher, Penn State

About the award
The National Server of the Year recognizes the top individual serving performance from a NCAA Division I-II men’s volleyball player during the regular season. The annual award is selected by a nationwide voting committee of college men’s volleyball coaches and media members.

Season recap
Fisher had a nation-best 58 aces and was second in the country with a 0.75 aces per game average to help Penn State win the EIVA championship. The opposite had multiple aces in 14 matches, including a season-high seven aces in a victory against NJIT in February.

2021 National Server of the Year finalists:
Camden Gianni, Grand Canyon
Gabi Garcia Fernandez, BYU
Cal Fisher, Penn State