Boston -- Juniors Kristin Watson (Bowie,Md./Eleanor Roosevelt) and Claudia Lopez (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico/Academia Maria Reina) were named America East Defensive Specialist and Setter of the Week, respectively, the conference announced Tuesday morning.
Watson, the defending America East Defensive Specialist of the Year, averaged a league-best 5.17 digs and over 20 digs per match in three contests last week. She also added 28 digs in a 3-1 win over Temple, and was the only defensive specialist named to Maryland All-Tournament team. It's the sixth Defensive Specialist of the Week honor for her.
Lopez picked up her third career Setter of the Week award after averaging a conference-best 12.4 assists per set last week. The red-shirt junior totaled 56 assists, the 8th-most in UMBC history, in a 3-1 win over Temple. She helped the Retrievers rank second in the league last week hitting .164.
"Claudia had our hitters in a really good zone and rhythm against Temple. She kept their defense really off balance," said head coach Ian Blanchard "Watts picked up right where she left off, and continues to be the rudder that steers our ship. We feed off her infections positive energy."
UMBC travels to No.12 Nebraska this weekend for the Ameritas Player's Challenge.