Springfield, Mass. - January 3, 2019 - After capturing their second-straight NCAA Division III National Championship a season ago, the Springfield College men's volleyball team had a pair of student-athletes garner preseason national recognition from Off the Block.
A nationwide voting committee selected 15 players to the 2019 Off the Block Division III Preseason All-American Team, and the annual preseason honor that was chosen by a 12-member voting committee comprised of Division III men's volleyball head coaches. This is the fourth season that Off the Block has presented the Division III Preseason All-American Team, as the national award winning website is the nation's leader in college men's volleyball coverage.
Kyle Jasuta (Manhattan Beach, Calif.) was one of only two middle blockers in the country to earn the national preseason honor, joining NYU's Neil Ferraro on the Off the Block Division III Preseason All-American Team. Entering his senior campaign, the two-time AVCA Division III All-America Second Team honoree posted a .471 hitting percentage with 165 kills last season. A graduate student pursuing his MBA, Jasuta totaled 71 blocks to go along with 28 aces a year ago and helped power an offense that led the country in team hitting percentage (.372). For his career, Jasuta has appeared in 85 matches and produced 396 kills at a .509 clip while adding 183 blocks.
Additionally, seven student-athletes from across the country were named Off the Block's 2019 Division III Preseason All-American Honorable Mention selections. Eli Irizarry Pares (Bayamon, Puerto Rico) was the only libero selected of the group and enters his senior campaign as an anchor within the Pride's lineup. Last season, the Health Care Management major was the ECAC Men's Volleyball Defensive Player of the Year in a season where he recorded 218 digs and had a serve-receive percentage of 95.5% as the Pride's libero. An All-Tournament Team honoree at the NCAA Championship, Irizarry Pares has registered 600 digs in 86 matches through three seasons with the Pride.
Last season, Springfield College repeated as the NCAA Division III National Champions to earn their 11th national title in program history. The Pride were led by the AVCA Division III National Coach of the Year in Charlie Sulivan and National Player of the Year in Sergio Figueroa Velez as they they went undefeated against Division III competition. The 2019 campaign will begin on Saturday, January 19 when the Pride head to California to take on Concordia-Irvine and Hope International.