SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - For the first time this season, the Endicott women's volleyball team swept the weekly Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) awards. Taking home Libero of the Week honors was Cydney Pierce (Carpinteria, Calif.), while Nicole Winkler (Southborough, Mass.) received Rookie of the Week honors, as Emma Mancini (Lynnfield, Mass.) received Player of the Week honors. The accolades come following a week in which the Gulls claimed their second straight CCC title, after defeating rival Roger Williams 3-2 in the championship match.
Pierce's Libero of the Week honor was her third of the season as she led Endicott's defensive efforts on their way to the championship, averaging 4.4 digs/set in the three wins. The senior posted 15 digs in both the CCC quarterfinals and semifinals as Endicott swept Gordon and Salve Regina, before posting 18 in the team's 3-2 road victory in the championship match. The Gulls held Gordon to an .049 average, well below their .174 average for the year in the quarterfinals, before holding Roger Williams to a .152 clip after the Hawks averaged .217 for the year.
This was the third CCC Rookie of the Week honor for Winkler as she closed the year by taking the last three honors the conference bestowed. The middle was a force in the semifinal match against Salve Regina, posting eight kills with just one error on 17 attempts to hit .412. She capped the week with a six kill, five dig, two block effort in the five set thriller over Roger Williams to help the Gulls claim their second straight CCC title. Winkler's efforts at the net were pivotal in limiting Roger Williams' middles to a .173 average combined.
For Mancini, her fourth CCC Player of the Week nod comes during a week in which she was named CCC Player of the Year. Mancini led Endicott's offense throughout the playoffs, tallying match-best kill marks in every match. In the 3-0 sweep of Gordon, Mancini posted 16 kills whille hitting .316 before recording 17 kills while hitting .400 in the semifinal sweep of Salve Regina. Mancini saved her best match for last, recording 22 kills in the team's 3-2 win over Roger Williams in the championship match. The junior also impressed defensively, producing two double-doubles on the week with 14 digs against Gordon and 10 against Roger Williams. For the week, Mancini finished averaging 5.00 kills/set, while hitting .291 to go with 2.36 digs/set.
With the team's CCC title, the Gulls have locked up the automatic berth to the NCAA DIII Tournament and await their oppenent, time and location, which will be announced later this afternoon.