The league’s 11 head coaches nominate and vote on the makeup of the team and cannot vote for their own players.
Jackson (Bonner Springs, Kan.) shares P.O.Y. honors with Washburn senior outside Genna Berg and is one of four Loper starters on the first-team. They are junior middle Anna Squiers (Kearney Catholic), junior setter Madison Squiers (Kearney Catholic) and junior right side Mary Katherine Wolfe (Omaha Marian). Making the second-team is sophomore libero Lindsay Nottlemann (Lincoln Pius X) and freshman middle Michaela Bartels (Bennington). Finally Rick Squiers is the MIAA Coach of the Year.
Now a three-time All-MIAA pick, Jackson makes the first team for a second straight fall and joins right side Annie Wolfe (2016) as Lopers to earn MIAA Player of the Year honors. The six-rotation player enters the MIAA Tournament leading the Lopers in several categories including kills (2.9) and points per set (3.5), service aces (28) and serve receive percentage (.976). Jackson also is at 3.7 digs per set.
Wolfe garnered second-team honors as a sophomore and currently is second on the team in both kills (2.6) and serve reception percentage (.969) and tied for fourth in both digs (2.99) and service aces (29). Next Anna Squiers is named All-MIAA for a third time, something only eight Lopers have done including Jackson. She is hitting a team-best .338 while averaging 2.4 kills and 0.7 blocks per set. She also has served up 25 aces and has 16 assists.
Sister Madison Squiers first year as a Loper was a very successful one as she is at 10.9 assists, 3.2 digs, and 1.9 kills per set while hitting .297. Ranking second in the MIAA in assists per set, she also has 19 aces and guided an offense that ranks in the top two in every league category.
Finally among the players, Nottleman took over for All-American Ellie McDonnell at libero and promptly has a team-best 5.1 digs per set average. She ranks fifth in the MIAA dps and also has 97 assists and eight aces. In the middle Bartles is among the MIAA’s top freshman, currently hitting .293 and coming in with 1.9 kills and a team-best 0.8 blocks per set.
Squiers picks up his third MIAA Coach of the Year Honor (2012 & 2016); he was an eight-time C.O.Y. in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC). Guiding UNK to its second-ever undefeated regular season, he has a 667-88 record (.883 win pct.) in his 21st season as Loper head coach. During that time the Lopers have reached 20 NCAA Tournaments and won 16 regular season league titles.
UNK (30-0) is the top seed in the MIAA Tournament and faces Missouri Southern State Thursday night at 5 p.m. in Kansas City.
That match can be heard on 93.1 The River and also on the River APP.