March 7, 2011

Mercado smashes way to AVCA National Player of the Week honors

LEXINGTON, Ky. --- Lees-McRae College senior Chad Mercado (Orlando, Fla.), fresh off a pair of impressive offensive performances against Eastern Mennonite University and New Jersey Institute of Technology, has been named the Sports Imports/AVCA Men's Division I-II National Player of the Week after recording at least 15 kills in each match, announced AVCA officials Monday.

Mercado is the second player in program history to earn the national weekly honor, and the first since Chris Gaskill was nationally recognized for the week of April 10, 2006. A native of Orlando, Fla., Mercado has led the Bobcats to an 11-7 record thus far, including seven wins in their last eight matches, while entering the week ranked third in the nation in kills per set (4.77).

The 6-5, 235-pound opposite opened the week in dominating fashion, recording 18 kills and just one error on 21 attempts against Eastern Mennonite on Friday afternoon to post an astonishing .810 hitting percentage. Mercado followed with an impressive performance against NCAA Division I NJIT in the Bobcats' second match of the day, notching 15 kills and a .481 attacking percentage in LMC's second three-set sweep of the evening.

For the week, Mercado posted 33 kills and three errors on 48 swings to record a combined .625 hitting percentage. Mercado has tallied at least 10 kills in all but one match this season, while entering the week ranked 11th in the nation in hitting percentage (0.352) and 41st in digs per set (1.66).

Lees-McRae returns to the court on Monday, Mar. 14 when the Bobcats host Limestone College in a Conference Carolinas match at 3 p.m., and Philadelphia Biblical University in a 7:30 p.m. tilt. Both matches will be played in Williams Gymnasium.

- LMC -