A nationwide voting committee has selected Loyola outside attacker Joseph Smalzer as the inaugural recipient of the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Server of the Year.
The Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. 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.
Smalzer finished the regular season leading the nation with 64 aces and a 0.65 per aces per game average. In addition, the junior had a season-best seven aces in a sweep against Ohio State in April to help Loyola secure a share of the MIVA regular season title and the No. 2 seed for the MIVA Tournament.
Smalzer also had a match-high five aces as Loyola swept Quincy in the MIVA Tournament quarterfinals on Friday to advance to the semifinals against No. 9 Ball State on Wednesday.
This is the first year for the Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Server of the Year award. The voting committee for this award was comprised of more than 20 college men’s volleyball head coaches and volleyball reporters from around the nation.
Smalzer received 10 first-place votes and earned 38 points to defeat runner-up USC setter Micah Christenson by nine points. UCLA outside attacker Gonzalo Quiroga finished in third place with 19 points.
Thirteen players received at least one vote for Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Serever of the Year. Among the other players to finished outside the top-three vote-getters included Cal Baptist outside attacker Levi Cabral, BYU outside attacker Taylor Sander and Ball State outside attacker Greg Herceg.
Off the Block is a website that launched in January 2011 and has become among the nation’s leading media outlets for college men’s volleyball news and analysis. Springbak, Inc. is the official sponsor of the 2013 National Server of the Year and 2013 National Blocker of the Year 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.
FINAL VOTING RESULTS (2013 Off the Block/Springbak, Inc. National Server of the Year)
1. Joseph Smalzer, Loyola — 38 (10) points
2. Micah Christenson, USC — 29 (6) points
3. Gonzalo Quiroga, UCLA — 19 (2) points
4. Levi Cabral, Cal Baptist — 11 (1) points
5. Taylor Sander, BYU — 9 points
6. Greg Herceg, Ball State — 7 (2) points
7. Ricardo Ferrer, Coker — 5 (1) points
T-8. Colin Hackworth, Lindenwood — 2 points
T-8. Michael Kvidahl, George Mason — 2 points
T-10. Kevin Hart, Limestone — 1 point
T-10. Aaron Russell, Penn State — 1 point
T-10. Kevin Tillie, UC Irvine — 1 point
T-10. Maurice Torres, Pepperdine — 1 point