Penn State Volleyball

Chris Nugent earns All-America honors in men’s volleyball

Penn State’s Chris Nugent earned men’s volleyball All-America honors Monday as the Nittany Lions prepare for the national championship tournament.

The senior outside hitter from Fairlawn, N.J., picked up his first career All-America honor after a standout senior season. He averaged 3.26 kills per set to lead the Nittany Lions (21-10) while hitting .312. He also had 24 aces, which is second on the team, 136 digs and 37 blocks.

Nugent gives the Nittany Lion program its 27th different All-American, which is tied for second-best in Division I-II. Its 45 total All-America awards are tied for third.

Redshirt freshman Cal Mende also earned honorable mention All-American honors, posting 3.23 kills per set with 11 aces, 110 digs and 79 blocks.

National Championship No. 2 seed Long Beach State leads the field with five first- and second-team selections, while defending champion and No. 1 seed Ohio State has three, as does Hawaii. The Rainbow Warriors and Penn State meet in the opening round of the tournament at 8 p.m. Tuesday at Ohio State’s St. John Arena.