Howard And Schulz Earn All-Conference Honors
With the completion of the Big West volleyball season, the Big West Conference released the 2012 All-Conference awards on Tuesday, November 27, placing a pair of Tigers among the conference's best. Leading the way for the Tigers was sophomore Gillian Howard who earned her first-career postseason award after being named to the All-Big West First Team. Joining Howard on the all-conference team was freshman Kat Schulz as the first-year Tiger earned both honorable mention honors as well as all-freshman honors.
In her first year as a starting middle-blocker, Howard proved herself as one of the top defensive middles in the conference as she posted 158 total blocks while averaging 1.25 per set. For the year, Howard's 1.25 blocks per set ranked No. 2 in the Big West for the regular season while she raised her average to 1.29 bocks per set in conference matches. Individually, Howard showed her skills as one of Pacific's best blockers in the past decade as the second-year blocker posted nine blocks in a single match in three different contests. Her nine blocks tied for the most in a single-match for any Tiger over the past 10 seasons. Her 158 blocks ranked as the 13th most in single-season program history and the third most in the last 20 seasons. In addition to her defensive prowess, Howard posted a career-best 213 kills on .269 hitting while playing in all 126 sets for Pacific. She added 20 aces and 103 digs while posting 322.5.
For Schulz, the freshman from Phoenix, Ariz. lived up to expectations in her first season of action as a true six-rotation player for the Tigers. Playing on the right-side for Pacific, Schulz finished her inaugural campaign with 295 kills, 19 aces, 393 digs and 62 blocks. Defensively, Schulz proved to be one of the best-ever in her first year as the freshman finished just one dig shy of Pacific's freshmen record after missing the final two matches and three total throughout the season due to injury. Her 3.57 digs per set ranked No. 10 in the Big West and was the most for any freshmen hitter in the Big West. Overall, Schulz used her all-around prowess to procure 17 double-doubles on the year including grabbing 10 in conference play.