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Athlete of the week: Abernathy above the rest

WILL SEBERGER/Arizona Daily Wildcat
Junior Jennifer Abernathy earned Pac-10 Player of the Week honors after being named Most Valuable Player for her play during Arizona's sweep of the Wildcat Classic in McKale Center.
By Lindsey Frazier
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Wednesday, September 15, 2003
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Junior outside hitter Jennifer Abernathy is living the high life after being named both Most Valuable Player of last weekend's Four Points University Plaza Wildcat Classic and Pacific 10 Conference Player of the Week for Sept. 7-12. In the weekend tournament, she totaled 50 kills on 111 attempts with only 22 errors, in addition to 25 digs and 53.5 points. On the year, the Antioch, Calif., native is averaging 4.36 kills and 2.16 digs per game. Now Abernathy switches from delivering kills to dishing out what it is like to compete against her sister, first impressions and why beach volleyball is underrated.

Wildcat: How does it feel to be named tournament MVP, Pac-10 Player of the Week and Wildcat Athlete of the Week at the same time?

Abernathy: It's good. It makes me feel happy. It's exciting.

Wildcat: Which is most important to you?

Abernathy: They're all really great. I think Pac-10 Player of the Week is better because it's against all the other schools in the Pac-10.

Wildcat: Outside of 50 kills, 25 digs and over 53 points in the tournament, what did you bring to the table in this weekend's tournament?

Abernathy: More than what I actually do athletically on the court, I think that I'm a big leader - talking and keeping people's heads in the game. I think that's mainly what I bring to the court.

Wildcat: Of Nicholls State, No. 9 Pepperdine and No. 18 Louisville, which victory was the sweetest?

Abernathy: Louisville because they beat us before my freshman year.

Wildcat: Your older sister plays collegiate volleyball for Pac-10 rival California. What is it like to compete against her?

Abernathy: It's always fun. We never actually have the big sibling rivalry like everybody expects us to have. We have fun out there.

Wildcat: Who is the better volleyball player?

Abernathy: (Laughs) That's a bad question. We're both equal.

Wildcat: Which volleyball position do you think is most difficult?

Abernathy: I think either middle (blocker) or setter because they have to do so much.

Wildcat: What is harder - beach or indoor volleyball?

Abernathy: Beach, because running in the sand is tiring.

Wildcat: Do you have any pregame superstitions or rituals?

Abernathy: Not at all.

Wildcat: Do you follow any other sports?

Abernathy: All of our UA sports. We're always at football games.

Wildcat: You competed with current teammates Bre Ladd and Kim Glass at the Women's Junior World Championships in high school. Do you remember your first impressions of them?

Abernathy: I remember I met Bre in the airport and it was like "You're the Bre that's going to Arizona, right?" Right off the bat we clicked because we're both really sarcastic people so we were just going back and forth at each other. Kim and I were roommates the very first time we met. So we just all clicked on and off the court.

Wildcat: Who is craziest Arizona volleyball player?

Abernathy: The craziest is Angie Ayers for sure. Her nickname is "Crazy."

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