2006 Men's National Player of the Year Division III

4/11/2006

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New York University's Chris Schmidt Named AVCA Division III Men's National Player of the YearSM

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) is pleased to announce New York University senior middle blocker Chris Schmidt as the 2006 AVCA Division III Men's National Player of the YearSM. Schmidt was presented with the award at the Molten Division III Men's Invitational Volleyball ChampionshipSM Banquet on April 6 at Hoboken, N.J.

Schmidt, a 6-3 native of Newbury Park, Calif., averages 3.81 points, 3.07 kills, 1.06 blocks and 0.60 digs per game, while playing 13 of his 21 matches against NCAA Division I-II competition. He leads the Violets and ranks fourth in the Eastern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association (EIVA) with a .432 attack percentage. Schmidt recorded a school-record 28 block solos this season. Schmidt was named to the EIVA Division III All-Tournament team after leading the Violets to the tournament final where they lost a five-game heart-breaker to top-ranked Juniata. Schmidt averaged 5.25 points, 4.00 kills, 0.92 blocks per game during the EIVA Division III Tournament, while attacking at a .524 clip.

"Chris proved himself to be one of the top middle players in the country, regardless of Division," NYU Head Coach Jose Pina said. "He was a giant at the net this year, and his consistently high numbers against top-ranked teams showed the outstanding level of play that he achieved after four years of hard work and dedication. His desire to compete and his accountability on the court have always been the main strength of his game. He will be sorely missed by our program, but finishing his career with this well-deserved award is fitting for a student-athlete of his caliber. It has been an honor for our university to have had the 2006 AVCA Division III Player of the Year as part of its student body."

Schmidt attacked at or above .500 percent on seven different occasions including a career-high .800 percent (12-0-15) against NCAA Division I Sacred Heart on Feb. 11. He hit over .300 in 18 of his 21 matches. Schmidt tallied five or more blocks seven times, while averaging over a block and half a game in eight matches. He produced double-digit kills 14 times including a career-high 19 versus NCAA Division II NJIT on March 28.

Schmidt has been named to the AVCA Division III Men's First Team All-AmericaSM for the third consecutive season. Earlier this year he was named the Sports Imports/AVCA National Player of the WeekSM on Feb. 6 and March 13. He was also named EIVA Division III Player of the Week on three separate occasions.

Schmidt is the first NYU student athlete to claim the national award, breaking a two-year streak of Juniata honorees.

AVCA Division III Men's National Players of the Year
2006 Chris Schmidt, New York University
2005 Ricky Ziegler, Juniata College
2004 Kenny Eiser, Juniata College

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