UAA Athletics

UAA's Hooe named volleyball player of the year in West Region

The best volleyball player in the NCAA Division II West Region this season is a Seawolf.

UAA setter Morgan Hooe became the first Seawolf to claim West Region Player of the Year honors Tuesday in a vote by the region's media relations directors.

Outside hitter Leah Swiss joined Hooe on the first-team All-West Region squad. Both advance to the national ballot for All-America consideration.

"I honestly never thought I'd get any type of award like this," Hooe said. "I love the game of volleyball and I'm out here just to play to the best that I can and get my team to play the best they can."

The honor is Hooe's second player of the year award in a week. Last Tuesday, the South High grad was named Great Northwest Athletic Conference Player of the Year.

[UAA racks major GNAC awards, including Player of the Year for Morgan Hooe]

Hooe has guided No. 9 UAA to a 29-2 overall record and 19-1 conference record this season, earning the Seawolves their first back-to-back conference titles in program history.

The 5-foot-7 senior is averaging 10.57 assists, 1.28 kills and 2.80 digs per set with a .396 hitting percentage.

"(Hooe) is one of the most athletic setters that I've ever coached and we're gonna miss her next year," UAA coach Chris Green said.

One of Hooe's favorite attackers is Swiss. The 6-foot sophomore is UAA's leading attacker with at least nine kills in 27 of 31 matches this season.

[UAA volleyball team to host NCAA regional tournament for 2nd straight year]

The first-team all-region honor is the second in two seasons for Swiss, who is No. 2 in the GNAC with 3.47 kills and 4.11 points per set, and third with 0.41 aces per set.

The Seawolves are the No. 1 seed in this week's NCAA West Regional Championships at the Alaska Airlines Center. UAA plays Chico State (23-7) at 7:30 p.m. Thursday in its first-round match.