Pavlik named National Coach of the Year

University Park, Pa. — Penn State men's volleyball head coach Mark Pavlik has been named the AVCA Division I-II National Coach of the Year, officials from the American Volleyball Coaches Association announced today. It is the first such award for Pavlik and the second in the history of the Nittany Lion program as he joins Tom Peterson, who earned the honor in 1994.

"I would like to thank the AVCA for this award, although I believe it is truly a reflection of the hard work of the team and entire staff, including my assistant coaches Craig Dyer and Colin McMillan," said Pavlik. "The university and athletic department provide us with a great volleyball environment and I can't thank Assistant Athletic Director Jan Bortner, Director of Athletics Tim Curley and University President Dr. Graham Spanier enough for their continued support of the entire volleyball program here at Penn State."

Under Pavlik, the men's volleyball squad captured its first National Championship since 1994, finishing the season with a 30-1 overall record after defeating No. 2 Pepperdine in four games for the title on May 3 in Irvine, Calif. Completing his 14th year at the helm of the program after taking over the head job from Peterson before the 1995 season, Pavlik holds a career record of 339-101 for a winning percentage of .770. His teams have captured 13 Eastern championships and made 13 appearances in the NCAA National Semifinals, advancing to the National title match in two of the last three years.

The 2008 squad boasted a nation-leading and program-record-tying five AVCA All-Americans, including AVCA National Co-Player of the Year and NCAA Championship Most Outstanding Player junior outside hitter Matt Anderson (West Seneca, N.Y.). Junior middle hitter Max Holt (Cincinnati, Ohio) joined Anderson on the AVCA All-America First Team while senior setter Luke Murray (East Petersburg, Pa.), sophomore middle hitter Max Lipsitz (Williamsville, N.Y.) and freshman libero Dennis Del Valle (Toa Alta, Puerto Rico) all earned Second Team All-America honors. Murray, Lipsitz and Holt also joined Anderson on the NCAA Championship All-Tournament team.

With the men's title in May, Penn State becomes just the second school to win the NCAA men's and women's volleyball national title in the same academic year, joining Stanford in 1996-97. The Nittany Lions also join the Cardinal in another prestigious category, as Pavlik and Penn State women's head coach Russ Rose become just the second duo from the same school to earn AVCA Division I National Coach of the Year honors in the same academic year. Former Stanford coaches Don Shaw and Ruben Nieves picked up the accolades in 1991-92.

Pavlik will be formally presented the AVCA Division I-II National Coach of the Year award on December 18 in Omaha, Neb., at the 2008 Jostens Coaches Honors Luncheon. The luncheon is held in conjunction with the 2008 AVCA Annual Convention and the 2008 Division I Women's Volleyball Championship at the Qwest Center Omaha.

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Last Updated November 18, 2010