Quartet of Men's Volleyball Players Earn Academic Honors

Jake Staahl (Photo by Tony Mastres)
Jake Staahl (Photo by Tony Mastres)

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Four UC Santa Barbara men's volleyball players were selected to the 2015 Mountain Pacific Sports Federation All-Academic  Team, it was announced by the conference on Thursday morning.

UCSB's four honorees included senior middle blocker Jake Staahl, senior outside hitter Weston Nielsen, junior setter Jonah Seif, and senior outside hitter Kevin Donohue.

To be elgible for the All-Academic team, student-athletes had to have a 3.0 or higher cumulative GPA, be at least a sophomore academically, have completed at least one year at the institution, and have competed in at least 50% of the team's competitions.

Staahl, a computer science major, was a Golden Eagle Ring Winner this past spring, finishing with the top GPA (3.84) of any male athlete at UCSB. He was just as effective on the floor, ranking third among MPSF players in hitting percentage at .417 and seventh in blocks at 1.18 per game.

Seif, a chemistry major, was named an All-American for the second consecutive season. One of the best all-around setters in the college game, he averaged 10.18 assists per set. The Thousand Oaks, Calif. native compiled a 3.50 GPA.

Nielsen, a history major, finished his senior year with a 3.22 GPA while proving an integral part of the Gaucho product on the floor. One of the finest passers to suit up for the blue and gold in recent years, Nielsen finished 11th in the conference in kills (2.98 per game).

Donohue, an economics major, stepped up his game on the court and in the classroom this year, posting a 3.59 GPA while earning his first career All-America award. Donohue had one of the most prolific seasons by a Gaucho hitter in recent memory, finishing with a career-best 3.64 kills per game average, the highest clip by a UCSB player since Jeff Menzel in 2011.