Valparaiso sophomore libero Taylor Root (Jenison, Mich./Jenison) has been named to the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-Midwest Region team following her record-breaking 2010 campaign. In addition, junior setter Jenny Pokorny (Geneva, Ill./Geneva) earned Honorable Mention All-Region notice.
Root becomes the fourth Crusader in the last four seasons to earn All-Region accolades, joining Angie Porché, a two-time honoree in 2007 and 2008, and fellow libero Brittany Malicoat, who received the honor in 2008. Root, one of only eight liberos nationwide to receive All-Region commendation, is now eligible for All-America honors, to be announced by the AVCA next Wednesday, Dec. 15.
Root receives the All-Region acclamation after setting new single-season program and Horizon League records with 754 total digs on the season. Her average of 5.94 digs/set leads all of NCAA Division I volleyball, as she is poised to become the first individual national statistical leader in Crusader volleyball history. The Horizon League Defensive Player of the Year, a three-time league Defensive Player of the Week selection and the MVP of the Bradley Invitational, Root tied or outright led the Crusaders in all 34 matches she played in, led all players in digs 22 times and registered at least 20 digs in 25 matches.
Meanwhile, Pokorny becomes the second Valpo volleyball player in the last three years to earn Honorable Mention recognition as well, joining fellow setter Kim Bukowski, who earned the honor in 2008. Pokorny earned All-League accolades, was twice named the league’s Offensive Player of the Week and received All-Tournament recognition in early-season action at the La Salle Invitational and the Bradley Invitational. The junior led the league with 10.48 assists/set, helping the Crusaders to the top spot in the league in kills and assists/set. Pokorny also led the Crusaders and finished sixth in the league in hitting percentage (.278) and also chipped in 2.78 digs/set, 1.40 kills/set, 0.47 blocks/set and 0.22 service aces/set.