Tarantino Tabbed MPSF and AVCA Player of the Week
March 17, 2014
MALIBU, Calif. – Middle blocker Matt Tarantino was voted the MPSF Player of the Week after leading the #4 Pepperdine men’s volleyball team to road wins over UCLA and UC Santa Barbara last week,. Tarantino is the Waves’ first conference player of the week award winner in 2014.
The next day, he was rewarded with AVCA National Player of the Week honors.
Over the last three matches Tarantino (Van Nuys, Calif./Bishop Alemany HS) has reached double-digit kill totals without committing a single attack error. After setting a new career-high in hitting percentage two weeks ago vs. Pacific (.733), the redshirt sophomore extended that mark to .750 during last week Tuesday’s four-set win at UCLA. He ended the night with 12 kills after taking 16 attempts.
On Friday at UC Santa Barbara, Tarantino tallied 11 kills behind 16 swings.
Not only did the middle blocker contribute offensively, he’s been aiding the defense as well. He first threw the roof on five times vs. the Bruins before adding four blocks against the Gauchos.
Tarantino has averaged 1.92 kills/set while hitting .423 on the season, but last week ranked second on the team with 2.56 kills/set while hitting at a blistering rate of .719.
He has put down more than 10 kills in his last three-consecutive matches and four times total in 2014.
Tarantino is Pepperdine’s first MPSF Player of the Week since Matt West picked up the honor on March 18 of last season.
Parker Kalmbach earned AVCA National Player of the Week honors earlier this season. Pepperdine is just one of two schools to have two players be recognized by the AVCA in the weekly awards in 2014, the other program being Stanford.