After claiming six Ohio Valley Conference weekly awards during her first two seasons at Morehead State, sophomore outside hitter Olivia Lohmeier has added the league's highest honor to her resume. Wednesday night, Lohmeier was named the OVC Player of the Year, earning the most votes from conference coaches and sports information directors.
In addition to her honor as the league's top player, Lohmeier earned a spot on the All-OVC First Team. Redshirt senior middle blocker Jessie Wachtman also secured a spot on the All-OVC First Team while redshirt setter Chandler Clark was named to the All-OVC Second Team.
Lohmeier's acknowledgement as the OVC's top player gives Morehead State their first conference player of the year since 2012 when Ellie Roberson claimed the honor. Lohmeier also becomes the fifth Eagle to claim the league's top accolade, joining Dayle Hammontree (1988 and 1989), Amy Almond (2001 and 2002), Holly Evans (2010), and Ellie Roberson (2012).
The 2018 season also marks the first time since 2015 that Morehead State has secured spots for two players on the All-OVC First Team. Merideth Jewell and Hannah Sigala teamed up on the first team in 2015 before Lohmeier and Wachtman joined together on this season's team.
On her way to securing OVC Player of the Year honors, Lohmeier slammed home 380 total kills with 233 of those occurring in conference play. Against OVC competition, she averaged 3.95 kills per set, a figure that ranks second amongst all players while also posting a league-best 4.36 points per set. Lohmeier posted a hitting efficiency of .260 during league play, committing only 74 errors on 611 swings. In addition to her high-kills total, she also earned points for her club with 21 total blocks and 12 service aces as she also chipped in 64 digs on the defensive end.
In 16 OVC contests this season, Lohmeier reached double-digit kills in 14 matches, including each of the last 10. She very nearly could have had double-figures in all 16 matches as in the two matches she didn't' register 10 or more kills, she totaled nine. Lohmeier also put together nine matches with 15 or more kills while also adding 10 games hitting .250 or better from the outside.
Wachtman posted Morehead State's second-best kill count during conference play, registering 165 kills, averaging 2.80 per set. She posted seven matches with 10 or more terminations, including a career-high 21 kills against Murray State in early November. Wachtman also represented one of the league's most efficient attackers, ranking third in the OVC with a .298 hitting percentage. Twelve times in league play, she posted attack percentages greater than .250 with three of those games featuring an efficiency better than .400. Her most efficient game came at Belmont, as she produced the seventh-best single-match hitting percentage (.727) in program history.
At the net, Wachtman turned away 60 total attacks, posting 16 solo blocks and 44 block assists. At 1.02 blocks per set, she ranked sixth-best in the category amongst league blockers. Wachtman's 16 solo blocks rank as the conference's best total as she produced nine of her solo blocks in a pair of consecutive matches in late October. She registered six solo blocks against Jacksonville State, the third-best single-match total in program history and only the third time since 2000 an Eagle recorded five or more solo blocks in a match.
Clark conducted the Morehead State offense from the setter spot, becoming the first Eagle to tally 1,000 assists in a season since 2013 as she posted 1,134 helpers on the year. She passed out 654 assists during OVC play, averaging 11.08 per set. Both totals ranked second-best amongst the league's setters. During conference play, Clark led Morehead State to a .213 hitting efficiency, a mark that ranks fourth-best in the league. Three times, she posted 50 or more assists, including a career-high 60 assists against Jacksonville State in the OVC opener.
Complimenting her assist total, Clark dumped in 40 kills, producing a .200 hitting efficiency during league play. She also scooped up 150 digs against OVC opponents, tallying six of her 11 double-doubles. Elsewhere defensively, Clark chipped in on 20 blocks, recording all block assists. She also led the Eagles in service aces during league play, landing 13.
Lohmeier, Wachtman, Clark, and the Eagles begin postseason action as the No. 3 seed Thursday, facing the No. 6 seed Southeast Missouri in the 2018 OVC Volleyball Championship's opening round. Match time between the Eagles and Redhawks is set for 12 p.m. ET.