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Northern Michigan University Wildcats’ trio honored: Lizzie Stark, Abigail Durecki earn All-GLIAC volleyball, Hailey Wickstrom honorable mention

Northern Michigan University’s Lizzy Stark, center, goes for a kill against Saginaw Valley State in the second set as teammates, from left, Alli Yacko, Lauren Caprini (partly hidden), Lauren Van Remortel and Madeline Crowley wait on the play in their GLIAC volleyball match held Sept. 28 at Vandament Arena in Marquette. (Photo courtesy Daryl T. Jarvinen)

MARQUETTE — A pair of Northern Michigan University volleyball players were named Friday to the All-GLIAC Second Team while a third made honorable mention.

All will be back next year as they are sophomores and freshmen.

Sophomore Lizzy Stark of Minneapolis and freshman Abigail Durecki of downstate South Lyon made the Second Team while sophomore Hailey Wickstrom of Calumet earned honorable mention.

Stark led the Wildcats with 388 kills, averaging 3.59 per set, both good for fourth high in the league. She was also second on the team with 20 service aces and third with 268 digs, while adding 32 blocks.

Stark had double-digit kills in 25 matches this season, including a career-high 23 against Minnesota State-Moorhead in September. She had 10 or more digs 15 times, including 18 at Grand Valley State, and had double-doubles in those two categories 11 times.

Northern Michigan University's Abigail Durecki jumps for the ball during a match against Michigan Tech on Nov. 2 at Vandament Arena in Marquette. (Journal photo by Trinity Carey)

Durecki led NMU with 31 aces and a .315 hitting percentage, the latter sixth in the GLIAC. She also was second for Northern with 279 kills, 2.54 per set, while adding 83 blocks and 61 digs. She reached double figures in kills 15 times, including a career-high 18 in a win over Illinois-Springfield.

Wickstrom made 248 kills and 59 blocks, reaching double-digit kills 11 times with a career-high 17 in a five-set win over Minnesota-Crookston.

The Wildcats finished 13-16 overall and 8-8 in the GLIAC, earning the No. 6 seed in the conference tournament, where they opened Wednesday with a five-set victory at No. 3 Ashland, Ohio, before falling in the semifinals to Upper Peninsula rival Michigan Tech on Saturday in a match played in Big Rapids.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.

Hailey Wickstrom