HIGH POINT, N.C. – Senior Rob Valentine was named Conference Carolinas Defensive Player of the Year, while he and Liam Maxwell earned all-conference recognition, the league office announced today at the Annual Awards Luncheon. Maxwell was a first-team selection, while Valentine was also the second-team libero.
Barton's Angelos Mandilaris was named Offensive Player of the Year, while Francisco Salinger Cenzual of Limestone won Freshman of the Year. In addition, Ryan Booher of King University earned Coach of the Year.
Valentine ranks fourth nationally and second in Conference Carolinas in digs per game at 2.77. He had 13 matches this season with at least 10 digs, including a career-best 25 against Limestone on Feb. 6. That figure is the most in the country by any player, while his 18 dgs. vs. the Saints on March 16 were second-highest in a three-set match. The Simi Valley, Calif., native received serves at a .922 success rate.
Maxwell leads the nation in attacks per set (10.35) and sits atop the conference in kills (4.30) and points (4.89) per set. He was named Conference Carolinas Player of the Week three times during the year and was the AVCA National Player of the Year on March 27. He topped double figures in kills in all but two of his matches, topping 20 on seven occasions. He established a new career high with 28 against Charleston on March 14. A native of Manahawkin, N.J., Maxwell had two double-doubles during the season.
For a full listing of the all-conference teams, click here.
No. 4 seed Belmont Abbey faces top-seeded King in the Conference Carolinas Tournament semifinals this afternoon at 5 p.m.