Pepperdine men’s volleyball’s Jasper named MPSF’s top player

Jaylen Jasper was named the MPSF's top player. Photo by Morgan Davenport.

Bryce Dvorak and Akin Akinwumi also earned conference honor for the Waves, who finished 16-14

Pepperdine Waves men’s volleyball player Jaylen Jasper was voted the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation’s Player of the Year on April 18. 

Jasper, a graduate student, was the top player in the seven-team federation all season. The opposite was named the MPSF Offensive Player of the Week four times and the AVCA National Player of the Week once.

Jasper is the sixth player in Pepperdine history to earn the MPSF’s top honor. David Wieczorek won it in 2018 and 2019, Paul Carroll won it in 2009, and current Waves head coach Jonathan Winder won it in 2007 when he was a Waves star. Additionally, Sean Rooney won the award in 2005, Brad Keenan won it in 2002, and George Roumain snagged it in 1998 and 1999. 

Jasper was also named to the All-MPSF first team and junior setter Bryce Dvorak was tapped for the second team. Akin Akinwumi, a senior, received honorable mention status. 

Pepperdine’s season ended on April 19 in the MPSF Tournament quarterfinal. The squad, ranked ninth nationally, was defeated by seventh-ranked Grand Canyon 25-22, 25-17, 25-20. 

Jasper had 12 kills and 3 digs in the contest. Akinwumi had 4 kills and 1 block and Dvorak recorded 29 assists, 1 ace, and 1 block. Junior middle blocker Andersen Fuller had 7 kills with a .700 hitting percentage and 2 aces. 

Jasper tied the Waves men’s volleyball program record for most kills in a single match during the rally-scoring era after nailing 37 against BYU. 

At the time of being named the MPSF’s top player, Jasper ranked second nationally with 5.02 kills and 5.51 points per set and was seventh with 9.08 attacks per set. He also had double-figure kills in 26 of Pepperdine’s 29 regular season matches, including two with over 30 kills and 12 with over 20 kills. Jasper held a .371 hitting percentage throughout the season and recorded 0.19 aces, 1.34 digs, and 0.53 blocks per set. 

Dvorak is a now a three-time MPSF second teamer. He was named the federation’s Offensive Player of the Week in January and ended the regular season ranked second nationally with 10.70 assists per set. Dvorak had two double-doubles this season in assists and digs and led Pepperdine in assists in all their matches, digs in nine matches, and blocks in four. He had 1,166 total assists in the regular season, with 38 aces, 152 digs, and 43 blocks. 

This is Akinwumi’s first time earning an MPSF honor. He ranked ninth nationally with a solid .426 hitting percentage at the end of the regular season and led Pepperdine with 17 blocks. Akinwumi averaged 1.85 kills, 0.36 aces, 0.85 blocks, and 2.65 points a set. 

The Waves finished the season with a 16-14 record. Before the MPSF Tournament, the team had two straight losses to second-ranked UCLA.