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Marquette Volleyball: Autumn Bailey & Gabby Benda Earn Big East Weekly Awards

And for the second straight week, it's not even an argument who the Offensive Player of the Week was in the Big East. Plus: Women's soccer gets an honor roll nod.

Gabby Benda is asserting control of the setter position as a freshman.
Gabby Benda is asserting control of the setter position as a freshman.

Last week, we talked about how great Autumn Bailey was at playing volleyball after she was named Big East Offensive Player of the Week.  This week, she's repeated that honor, and somehow, had an even better week.

I'm just going to lay out here and let the Big East's own release say it for me, because I don't know if I can actually put it in words properly...

Bailey averaged an incredible 7.00 points and 6.33 points per set last week for Marquette, which overcame Wednesday's five-set loss at Butler with home wins over Villanova and Seton Hall. She logged career-bests of 30 kills and 25 digs against the Bulldogs before tallying 21 and 25 kills against the Wildcats and Pirates, respectively. She hit .255 for the week with 76 kills and also contributed 4.33 digs per frame.

Now I know what you're saying.  Marquette set an NCAA record for points in a match on Saturday against Seton Hall, even though they only went to four sets.  Because they played so many extra points in the first and fourth sets, that boosted Bailey's averages per set, right?



@MarquetteVB also informs us that Bailey now ranks in the top 20 in the country in kills, points, and total aces.  The sophomore from Burlington, Ontario, leads the Big East in the first two categories, but trails St. John's Aleksandra Wachowicz in the third by just one service ace.  Bailey does have the advantage on Wachowicz in aces per set, though.

The big beneficiary of Bailey's week was freshman setter Gabby Benda, who was named the Big East's Freshman of the Week.  The Raleigh, NC, native averaged 11.42 assists during Marquette's 2-1 week and notched her first career double-double against Seton Hall with 60 (SIXTY??!?) assists and 15 digs.  Benda appears to have recovered from her injury following the match against St. John's and is securing her spot as MU's setter, as she leads the Big East in assists per set in conference matches at 10.68 per stanza.

Transitioning to women's soccer for a moment, Darian Powell was named to the Big East's Weekly Honor Roll on Monday.  Powell scored a goal in each of Marquette's matches last week as the Golden Eagles went 1-1.  She had eight shots on the week, including a match high six against #12 DePaul on Sunday night.  Powell played 71 of the 104 minutes against the Blue Demons, giving her a shot every 12 minutes or so.  Now, Sofie Schunk only played 15 minutes in the game, which means there's another 19 minutes unaccounted for where Powell wasn't on the field.  But Schunk's Senior Night adventures at striker vacuumed up 14% of the match where Powell wasn't playing, and with six shots in the match, it seems pretty clear that DePaul didn't really have an answer for the talents of the sophomore from Iowa.