Richards Named MWC Co-Player of the Week

Lauren Richards was named MWC Co-Player of the Week on Monday, after leading BYU to a 3-0 record in the BYU Mizuno Classic over the weekend. Richards averaged 11.38 apg, 2.31 dpg, 1.62 kpg, 1.15 bpg and 0.54 sapg. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- BYU setter Lauren Richards earned Mountain West Conference Volleyball Co-Player of the Week honors, marking her first career award.

A 6-0 sophomore from Orem, Utah (Timpanogos HS), Richards entered last week's Mizuno Classic with just seven starting assignments as setter for BYU, but was able to lead the Cougars to the tournament title with stellar all-around play. Under Richards' direction last week, BYU hit .234 (compared to opponents .177) despite facing two top-25 blocking teams (Penn State-11, Ohio State-25). Five Cougars hit .250 or better and three averaged at least 3.0 kills per game, including 4.31 kills per game by Classic MVP Kim Wilson.

Although BYU struggled with a team hitting percentage of .167 (54-28-156) in a win over Big Ten power Ohio State, Richards stepped up with a .417 hitting percentage (7-2-12), totaling seven kills, 41 assists, nine digs, five aces and a career-high five blocks. In a victory over Rice, Richards collected 52 assists, 10 digs and four blocks to mark her fifth double-double of the season. In the win over No. 8 Penn State, Richards recorded another double-double with 55 assists and 11 digs, while topping her previous career-high with six blocks vs. the Nittany Lions, who entered the Classic as the No. 3 hitting team in the nation (.352). For the week, Richards averaged 11.38 assists, 2.31 digs, 1.62 kills, 1.15 blocks and .54 aces per game.

Air Force outside hitter Delavane Diaz was also named MWC Co-Player of the Week after posting a career-high 41 kills in a win over Southern Mississippi, and leading the Falcons to three wins.

Mountain West Conference Players of the Week:		

Sept. 2 - Carrie Bowers, Sr., RS, BYU

Sept. 8 - Kim Turner, Sr., MB, Utah

Sept. 15 - Lauren Richards, So., S, BYU and Delavane Diaz, Sr., OH, Air Force