Every week during the high school season, VolleyballMag.com recognizes a Dream Team of players who were standouts the weekend before. Most weeks, the eight-girl Dream Team will consist of the following:
Setter, S/RS or RS
This week, because no defensive specialists or right sides were nominated, we added a second setter and third OH.
Players will be considered for Dream Team ONLY if they are nominated by their high school coaches using this link: https://volleyballmag.com/hs-player-of-the-week-submissions/.
Nominations will be solicited by email to high school coaches only on our email list. To sign up, follow this link: https://volleyballmag.com/hs-email-sign-up/
Note to coaches and directors: while there is no science to how we choose members of our Dream Team, performing on bigger stages will give players an edge, as will nomination forms that describe with specificity how well a player performed the previous week.
DREAM TEAM for October 26, 2022
S: Livia Ward, 5-10 Soph., Mount St. Mary (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma) – Ward led the Rockets to a second straight Oklahoma 5A title.
The sophomore played her best volleyball when the team needed her most. She recorded 44 assists in the three-set sweep of Bishop McGuinness, including 17 in the final set, which pushed her past the 1,000 assist mark on the season. The state tournament MVP also added 15 digs and made zero errors in 16 service attempts with one ace.
S: Ashley Pruitt, 5-8 Sr., Briarcrest Christian (Eads, Tennessee) – Pruitt led the Saints to another Division II-AA state title this past week. She hoisted 109 helpers for the tournament (10.9 per set) and was a prime reason Briarcrest Christian hit .325 for the week. “She played well in all facets of the game,” said coach Associate Head Coach April Jauregui. “Her biggest contribution is that she plays with amazing passion and energy. She was poised on the court and brought senior leadership. She did a great job distributing the offense and following the game plan.”
OH: Lakin Laurendine, 6-2 Sr., Jackson Academy (Jackson, Mississippi) – Laurendine put an exclamation point on an amazing career with a virtuoso performance in the championship match against Madison-Ridgeland Academy. The 6-2 Auburn recruit had 20 kills, 19 digs and two aces in the final. She finished with 623 kills (4.9 per set), 526 digs, 97 aces and 35 blocks for the 40-5 Raiders, who went undefeated against in-state competition, including twice sweeping Brandon.
“Lakin’s size and ability to play six rotations at the highest level makes her stand out amongst the best in the state and nationally,” said coach Melissa Denson. “She will be a name to remember and go down as one of the best!”
OH: Sunni Sheppard, 5-4 Sr., Brandon (Mississippi) – Sheppard was named MVP after leading Brandon to another Mississippi Class 6A title this past week. The six-year starter, who is bound for Houston to play libero, amassed 17 kills and 34 digs in the win over Germantown. “Even though she is only 5-4, her ability to hit high-level shots and read the court to see where she needs to put the ball makes her play like a 6-footer,” said coach Kelsa Walker. “Her passing is absolutely textbook and she loves a challenge from a big hitter.”
OH: Addison Hurst, 5-9 Sr. OH, Cleveland (Tennessee) – Hurst earned MVP honors thanks to 23 kills over three sets in the Tennessee AAA final. The senior finished the year with more than 600 kills and almost 400 digs.
MB: Yahaira Vazquez, 5-11 Jr., Verdugo Hills (Tujunga, California) – Vazquez tallied 46 kills, 16 aces, six blocks and 38 digs last week for the Dons, who won their fourth straight league title this past week., The junior is ties atop the school’s career ace list with 227 heading into today Los Angeles City Section playoff match versus top-seeded Granada Hills Charter.
MB: Myah Favre, 5-9 Fr., Our Lady Academy (Bay St. Louis, Mississippi) – The freshman had 22 kills and six aces over three sets to help OLA down Alcorn Central in a rematch of last year’s Class 3A final, which Alcorn won. Favre finished the year with 532 kills.
Libero: Abby Christian, 5-8 Sr., Liberty North (Liberty, Missouri) – The senior captain led the 29-5 Eagles in District play. An Abilene Christian University recruit, Christian tallied 40 digs in three sweeps, passed a 2.5 and, according to coach Katie Dowden, “served daggers into the hearts of each opponent.” Christian is a floor leader and “the anchor of our tremendous defense,” Dowden said.
Also considered (by position, in order of consideration):
S: Shannon Clark, 5-8 Sr., Westborough (Massachusetts) – Clark played in eight sets across two matches this past week, including a five-set win over Frontier Regional on Friday. Clark produced 78 assists, 13 digs and seven aces as her team remained undefeated on the year.
S: Rachel Rossing, 5-9 Sr., Lake Country Lutheran (Hartland, Wisconsin) – Rossing led the Lightning to a regional championship this past week. Running a stellar quick offense, the senior had 27 assists, five kills and three aces in a sweep of Living Word on Thursday, then was a catalyst in Lake Country Lutheran’s thrilling five-set Saturday win over Dominican. The senior finished that match with 35 assists, 15 digs, six kills and two solo blocks. “She has been our leader all year long and her composure on Saturday night was key to our victory,” coach Janet Bahr said.
S: Kailey Holt, 5-8 Jr., Portsmouth Christian (Dover, New Hampshire) – In three matches last week, Holt recorded a remarkable 32 aces (including 18 in one match!), giving the Eagles momentum heading into postseason play. She also contributed 39 aces.
S: Avery Barber, 5-9 Jr., Exeter Union (Exeter, California) – Over six sets last week, Barber had 65 assists, 20 digs, eight kills and three aces for the 2021 CIF State Division IV runners up. She leads a diverse and “highly effective” offense according to head coach Samantha Hilvers.
OH: Chloe Chicoine, 5-9 Sr., McCutcheon (Lafayette, Indiana) – A mainstay on the Dream Team during club season for “doing Chloe things,” Chicoine overcame cramps to contribute 31 kills and 21 digs, but it wasn’t enough to help the Mavericks get by Hamilton Southeastern in a showdown of one-loss teams for a 4A Regional title on Saturday.
OH: Annalaura Williford, 5-9 Sr. OH, Our Lady Academy (Bay St. Louis, Mississippi) – Williford earned MVP honors as OLA returned to the pinnacle with a revenge sweep over 2021 champion Alcorn Central in the Class 3A championship match. The senior finished with 23 kills and 10 digs.
OH: Quinn Anderson, 6-0 Jr., Marlborough (Massachusetts) – One of the state’s top hitters, Anderson recorded 35 kills in a five-set win on Friday over perennial small school power Frontier Regional. She also had nine digs and three blocks in the matchup of unbeaten teams.
OH: Morgan Burke, 6-0 Sr., Skutt Catholic (Omaha, Nebraska) – A Michigan recruit, the strong-armed Burke helped Skutt go 5-0 (10-0) in matches last week, including a conference title on Saturday. In those 10 sets, she had 48 kills, hitting .643, and added 17 digs and 10 aces. The team’s kill leader broke the 1,000 career kill mark over the weekend and “can do it all” according to coach Renee Saunders.
OH: Jalynn Brown, 6-1 Sr., New Smyrna Beach (Florida) – Brown, a USF recruit, surpassed 800 career kills in a Tuesday sweep of Forest. She had 13 kills in that District semifinal win. Two days later, Brown tallied 18 kills and 11 digs in a four-set win over Gainesville in the District final. The Barracudas are 20-2 on the season.
OH: Hanna Baker, 5-10 Sr., Exeter Union (Exeter, California) – Over six sets last week, Baker showed why she is the top hitter for the Monarchs. Carrying a heavier load because of a teammate’s injury, the senior amassed 32 kills, 32 digs, five aces and two assists.
OH: Sarah Lawrence, 5-10 Sr., River Bluff (Lexington, South Carolina) – In two playoff matches last week, Lawrence hit .451 with 28 kills, dug up 20 balls and passed a 2.32 in 22 receptions.
OH: Ella Johns, 6-0 Sr., Fernandina Beach (Florida) – Johns recorded 18 kills on 30 swings in a Wednesday win over Paxon and followed up one day later with 14 kills and 13 digs in the District final versus Yulee.
OH: Megan Barton, 5-7 Sr. OH, Baker County (Glen St. Mary, Florida) – Barton slammed home a career-high 21 kills and added 17 digs and eight blocks in a five-set win over Wakulla on Thursday for the 4A-District 2 title.
OH: Sarabelle Jameson, 6-0 Soph., Creekside (St. Johns, Florida) — Jameson had career performances in last week’s district tournament, setting a career-high 19 kills on 40 swings, with a 0.400 attack efficiency in the final match against Bartram Trail. The sophomore added a match-high three service aces in leading the Knights to their third straight District title.
OH: Julia Howard, 5-6 Fr., Christ’s Church Academy (Jacksonville, Florida) – Howard had a match-high 12 kills in the District-clinching win over St. Johns Country Day. She went over 300 career kills in the match.
OH: Liahna Messier, 5-8 Sr., Portsmouth Christian (Dover, New Hampshire) – Messier had 24 kills, three aces and 14 digs over three matches as Portsmouth Christian extended its winning streak to seven straight in Division III heading to the postseason.
MB: Robinson Repass, 6-3 Sr., Providence School (Jacksonville, Florida) – Repass had 19 kills and four blocks on Tuesday in the Stallions’ District semifinal win over Episcopal School of Jacksonville. She followed up with 16 kills and five blocks two days later in a five-set loss to Fernandina Beach.
MB: Izzy Evers, 6-0 Sr. MB, Georgetown Day (Washington, D.C.) – Evers hit .813. with 13 kills on 16 swings, in a win over rival Visitation this week/ The senior added five aces and two blocks in a dominating effort.
Libero: Brooke Rifkin, 5-3 Sr., Richardson (Texas) – A Kent State recruit, Rifkin recorded a career-high 31 digs in the Eagles’ rivalry match versus Pearce. Rifkin also passed a 2.1 over the past week.
Libero: Cooper Piepgrass, 5-5 Fr., Exeter Union (Exeter, California) – An injury forced the freshman to play some on the outside in addition to her back row duties. Over six sets, she recorded 26 digs and six assists, and also had four kills and three aces.
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Thanks for covering Mississippi volleyball. You may want to check on the Laurendine stats. She was not a member of the Raider team for four years. She transferred to the Raider team as a junior. Thanks again for considering correcting the error.
It’s been corrected. Thanks.