SACRAMENTO -- Sacramento State setter Kennedy Kurtz and libero Brigitte Murdock were named the Big Sky Conference's offensive and defensive players of the week, respectively, after helping lead the Hornets to a 4-0 record last week.
The Hornets posted wins over UC Davis, Bowling Green, Northern Kentucky and Seattle over a five-day span. The road win at rival UC Davis was especially gratifying as Sacramento State had to overcome 8-2 and 13-10 deficits in the fifth set.
Sacramento State has now garnered two offensive player of the week awards during the first three weeks of the season, including Lana Brown earning the honor on Aug. 28. The honor for Murdock was the first of her career while Kurtz earned the award for the second time (once in 2016).
Kurtz, a fourth-year senior and team co-captain, stuffed the stat sheet every night, finishing the week with a .409 hitting percentage to go along with averages of 0.78 kills, 10.56 assists, 3.06 digs, 0.50 blocks and 0.39 aces per set. She posted at least 43 assists in all four matches, including a massive 57 dimes in the Hornets' win against Bowling Green. In addition, she hit at least .400 with double figures in digs in three of the four matches.
In the Hornets' 3-2 road win at rival UC Davis, Kurtz had five kills, a .667 hitting percentage, 44 assists, an ace, two blocks and career-best 22 digs. In the team's five-set win against Bowling Green, she had three kills, a .400 hitting percentage, 57 assists, 13 digs and three blocks. Against Northern Kentucky, Kurtz had three kills, a .500 hitting percentage, 43 assists, two aces, three blocks and 11 digs. Later that day, she added three kills, 46 assists, four aces and nine digs in a four-set win over Seattle.
Murdock, also a fourth-year senior, was a huge part of a Hornet defense that limited the opposition to a .167 hitting percentage during the week. In fact, none of Sacramento State's four opponents hit anything better than .217, and three of them hit below .185. For her efforts, she was named all-tournament at the NKU Invite.
Murdock averaged 5.06 digs per set, and posted at least 15 digs in all four matches. That included a career-best 38 digs in a five-set win over Bowling Green. The 38 digs were also tied for the third best mark in Sacramento State's Div. I era (1991-pres.), and the most by a Sacramento State player since 2011.
Murdock had 21 digs in the Hornets' 3-2 win at UC Davis, and followed that up with 38 digs against Bowling Green, 17 at Northern Kentucky, and 15 more against Seattle. In addition, she finished the week with 13 assists and three aces.
Sacramento State (7-5) will bring its four-match winning streak into this week's slate of matches, beginning with a home tilt with San Francisco tomorrow at 7 p.m.
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