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Pelger earns Big 12 weekly honor

By The Mercury

The Kansas State volleyball teams’ Kaitlynn Pelger was named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week, the conference announced Monday.

Pelger was the only Big 12 player to rank in the Top 10 in both blocks and digs per set last week. The Olathe native was second in blocks with 1.8 blocks per set and 10th in digs with 3.50 digs per set. She also helped K-State limit its opponents to a combined .152 hitting percentage over three matches, including a .060 hitting percentage at Arkansas last Friday. Pelger had a season-high nine blocks in the match against the Razorbacks.

This is the second week in a row in which a Wildcat has earned a Big 12 Player of the Week award. Redshirt-freshman Katie Brand was named the conference’s Rookie of the Week for the week of Sept. 9.

The Big 12 weekly award is the sixth for Pelger in her career, but first Defensive Player of the Week honor. The middle blocker has earned four Offensive Player of the Week honors and one Rookie of the Week award. She is the first Wildcat to be named the Big 12’s Defensive Player of the Week since Alex Muff in 2010.

In 13 matches this season, Pelger is averaging 1.04 blocks and 2.7 digs per set, both of which are the second-most on K-State among players that qualify. She is also averaging a team-best 2.74 kills, 0.82 assists and 0.38 aces over her 50 sets played.

Pelger became just the sixth player in K-State history to register 1,300 career kills last weekend when she had seven kills against Arkansas. The Big 12’s active leader in career kills has 1,326 entering this weekend’s conference opener at West Virginia on Sept. 27.

Pelger and the 12-1 Wildcats host the Italian 23-and-under National Team tonight at 7 in an exhibition match in Ahearn Field House.

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