Stanford's Lawson and Emmanuel's Abram Lauded as Sports Imports/AVCA National Players of the Week
Brad Lawson, a 6-7 outside hitter for then-No. 2 Stanford University, has been named the Sports Imports/AVCA Division I-II Men's National Player of the Week after propelling his team to two more Mountain Pacific Sports Federation (MPSF) victories, which allowed the Cardinal to grab sole possession of first place in the league standings. In Stanford's first outing, a 3-1 win over then-No. 14 UC San Diego, Lawson hit .552 with 18 kills, nine digs, four assists, two aces and a block. In the Cardinal's next match, Lawson totaled 16 kills, four digs, two blocks and an assist, while hitting at a .371 clip, in Stanford's four-set triumph over then-No. 6 Long Beach State. For the week, Lawson recorded an efficient .453 attack percentage, while averaging 4.25 kills, 1.63 digs and 4.69 points per game. This is the second time this season Lawson has earned Sports Imports/AVCA Men's Division I-II Player of the Week accolades, his last honor coming on February 16, and marks the eighth time a Stanford athlete has grabbed the award. The Cardinal are coached by John Kosty.
Curtis Abram, a 6-2 outside hitter for Emmanuel College has been named the Sports Imports/AVCA Men's Division III National Player of the Week. He earned the award for his efforts in propelling the Saints to a 6-0 week, including victories over three teams ranked in the top-ten of the AVCA Men's Division III Coaches Top 15 Poll. Abram kicked things off by tallying 17 kills, four digs, three blocks and two aces in Emmanuel's first upset of the week, a four-set verdict over then-No. 6 Rivier. Next up, the junior notched a double-double in the Saints' 3-2 win over then-No. 10 MSOE, bashing 27 kills and picking up 13 digs in the process. In Emmanuel's sweep of New Haven to begin the MIT Invitational, the spark plug turned in another 17-kill outing, while also adding seven digs and three aces. Abram continued his hot streak by putting down 11 kills and picking up four digs in a whitewashing of Bard. He turned in his second 20-plus kill outing of the week in the Saints' 3-1 victory over then-No. 7 Carthage, smashing 25 bombs, in addition to grabbing eight digs. Abram capped his stellar play with a 13-kill, six-dig, five-block outing in Emmanuel's blanking of Mount Saint Vincent. For the week, Abram, who was named the MVP of the MIT Invitational, hit at a .411 clip and averaged 5.00 kills, 1.91 digs and 5.73 points per game. This marks just the second time an athlete from Emmanuel has been awarded Sports Imports/AVCA Men's Division III National Player of the Week accolades. The last Saint to take home the honor was Michael Townsend March 23, 2009. Emmanuel is coached by Chris Wright.