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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona volleyball team, stars Paige Whipple and Jessie Harper earn latest Daily Wildcat weekly awards

Amy Bailey

Arizona outside hitter Paige Whipple strikes the ball to ASU in the Arizona versus Arizona State game in McKale Center on Sept. 20, 2018, in Tucson, Az. The Wildcats beat ASU 3-0.

The month of March is women’s history month and the lady Wildcats have been making noise. Two of those amazing athletes are volleyball star Paige Whipple and softball standout Jessie Harper.

Daily Wildcat Co-Player of the Week: Paige Whipple

On March 12 against Colorado, Whipple moved into a tie for No. 12  on the all-time kills list at the University of Arizona with her coach, Charita Stubbs. On March 14 against Colorado, Whipple finished the match with 11 kills, allowing her to pass Stubbs and sit atop the 12 spot alone. At a press conference on March 12, Whipple laughed about how her being close to Stubbs’ record is not something she thinks about. 

“We were joking back and forth how I have eight games left and I would probably get 15 kills,” Whipple said. “Whether it happened today or not was not a huge deal … [Stubbs] is a little salty that I am about to pass it, but that is okay.”

Whipple is a senior, but because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the NCAA is granting those whose seasons were shortened last year the opportunity to come back and continue playing their sport. Whipple is still undecided on what she will do but, either way, she has had a very decorated career at the UA.

Daily Wildcat Co-Player of the Week: Jessie Harper

Much like Whipple, Harper made history in one of her recent games — only hers will go in the NCAA record books. On March 10, the Wildcats were down in Tallahassee, Florida playing Florida A&M. Harper went 3-3 with two home runs, six RBIs and two runs scored. Her two homers put her at 80 for her career, making her only the eleventh softball player to hit 80 home runs in a career. With many games still left in the season, Harper has a chance to pass the all-time record of 95 home runs held by former Oklahoma Sooner Lauren Chamberlain. 

Daily Wildcat Team of the Week: Arizona volleyball team

After a tough loss at ASU, the Wildcats set up for a showdown against Colorado, who were coming off a split series against UCLA. The stars of Arizona volleyball were shining bright this week. In the absence of middle blocker China Rae Crouch, middle blocker Merle Weidt came off the bench to fill the void. Over the two matches, Weidt made her presence felt at the net. She amassed 20 kills and 12 block assists. 

The freshmen also came out in force. Over the course of the two matches, outside hitter Sofia Maldonado Diaz had 25 kills, outside hitter Jaelyn Hodge had 26 kills and setter Emery Herman had 83 assists. Combine this with the stellar play of all their teammates that allowed the Wildcats to crush Colorado in both matches by a combined match score of 6-2.

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