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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Off The Block has announced that Penn State redshirt-senior Jalen Penrose (Cambridge, Mass.) as the publication’s Server of the Year for his efforts from the service line in 2018.
In 26 matches (92 sets) this season, Penrose lined up 54 service aces, a total that ranked No. 4 in the NCAA entering the NCAA Tournament. That total ranks No. 5 on the single season charts at Penn State and makes him one of just four Penn Staters to reach the 50-ace mark in a single season. Penrose, Max Holt (79, 2009; 55, 2007), Will Price (51, 2009) and Aaron Russell (71, 2014; 62, 2015) are all among the 50-ace club for the Blue and White.
For his career, Penrose collected 117 aces to finish No. 5 on the Nittany Lions’ all-time charts. He is just the eighth Penn State men’s volleyball student-athlete to reach the 100-ace mark for a career.
With Penrose’s 54 service aces in 2018, he joins Russell (71; 2014 and 62; 2015) to give Penn State three individual seasons with 50-plus service aces since the 25-point rally scoring began in 2011. The Penn State duo joins Loyola-Chicago, Ohio State, UC Irvine and UCLA as the only schools to have three student-athletes with 50-plus service aces.
His 0.587 service aces per set in 2018 sat No. 2 among the NCAA ranks and his 0.355 career average was No. 13 among active student-athletes in 2018.
With nine aces at Harvard, Penrose tied John Wasielewski's school-record which he accomplished vs. Pepperdine on Feb. 2, 1990 at Rec Hall.
The nine service aces in a match are tied for No. 6 in the NCAA single-match record books (since 2001 when rally scoring was installed) and are tied for the most in the NCAA during the 2018 season. With seven service aces at George Mason (4/7/18), Penrose owns two of the top-five service aces matches in the NCAA this season.
Adding a six-ace performance vs. Ball State (2/2/18), Penrose is the only student-athlete in Division I with three matches of 6+ service aces. On the season, Penrose has at least one service ace in 18 of his 25 appearances, including 11 with multiple aces. Among his 11 multi-ace matches, Penrose has seven matches with at least four service aces.
The award was first handed out in 2013, with Russel finishing among the top-10 vote getters on three occasions, including second in 2015 and third in 2014. Previous winners include Ohio State’s Nicolas Szerszen (2017) UCLA’s Micah Ma’a (2016), and the Loyola duo of Thomas Jaeschke (2015) and Joseph Smalzer (2013 & 2014).
A voting committee of 25 men’s volleyball coaches and volleyball media members from around the nation determined the winner of the National Server of the Year. The top three vote-getters were named finalists for the award.