Iowa State press release:
AMES, Iowa – Iowa State libero Hali Hillegas has been named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week, the conference announced Monday. The award is the first conference award for Hillegas in her career, the second DPOW award for ISU in 2016 and the Big 12-best 45th for Iowa State since the award’s inception in 2007.
Hillegas becomes the ninth Cyclone to be named the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week. She is the second winner for ISU in 2016, with Branen Berta earning the award back on the first weekend of the season. The Cyclones’ 45 Big 12 DPOW wins are more than double any other school’s total, with Kansas the next-closest at 20.
In Iowa State’s four-set win over Kansas State last Wednesday, Hillegas was outstanding in leading the Cyclone back-row with 27 digs. The Charles City native was a consistent presence for the ISU effort, as she had at least six digs in each of the four sets, while posting nine in the second frame. She also contributed two assists in the victory.
Since taking over as Cyclone libero on Sept. 30 at West Virginia, Hillegas has averaged 5.09 digs per set while Iowa State has restricted opponents to a .187 hitting percentage. She has had at least 10 digs in 10-straight matches, including all nine Big 12 matches in 2016. Her 27 digs against the Wildcats was her fourth effort of the season with at least 20 digs.
Hillegas and the Cyclones are back in action Wednesday when West Virginia visits Hilton Coliseum. First serve between ISU and WVU will be at 6:30 p.m.