Nov. 20, 2012
The Collegiate Volleyball Update (CVU.com)named Louisville senior Gwen Rucker as the CVU.com National Player of the Week for Nov. 12 through Nov. 18.
A 6-2 middle blocker from Lexington, Ky., Rucker came through with three matches of stellar play to help Louisville become the first team since 2007 to win both the BIG EAST regular season title and the conference tournament championship.
To open the tournament, the senior posted a BIG EAST record hitting percentage, drilling 13 kills on only 15 swings without an error to hit .867. That was complemented by a big defensive outing as Rucker just missed a double-double with nine blocks in the sweep of St. John's.
In the next round versus Cincinnati, the middle again missed converting on just two swings, knocked down 15 kills on 17 attempts to hit .765 for the match. That went with three more blocks as the Cardinals picked up another sweep.
Finally, in the title tilt versus Marquette, Rucker again was solid all around and the result was the same: another sweep. The senior picked up 10 more kills on .400 hitting, chipping in defensively with six digs and five blocks en route to tournament MVP honors.
For the nine sets of the championship, Rucker committed only two errors, averaging 4.22 kills and 1.89 blocks per set all while hitting a scorching .654. The middle is the second Louisville player to receive the CVU.com Weekly Honor. The other was Lena Ustymenko in 2005.