HIGH SCHOOL VOLLEYBALL
Sunday, January 8, 2017
2016 All-Area Volleyball ALL-AREA FIRST TEAM
MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
Kaylee Buell Ponder, MB/S, Sr. Buell was named the District 9-3A MVP and was the catalyst behind a historic run for the Lady Lions that ended in the regional tournament in the school’s first-ever playoff appearance. Buell, who mainly patrolled the middle for Ponder as a standout blocker but also saw time at setter, led the team with 295 kills and also put up a team-best 78 blocks. Buell racked up 28 aces for Ponder and also served as a versatile defensive standout while tallying 206 digs.
Jennifer Chapman Lake Dallas, S, Sr. Chapman was arguably the biggest focal point for the Lady Falcons’ success on the court. The fouryear starter ended her career with a team-high 921 assists to help put the Lady Falcons in the playoffs for the third straight season. She was also a force at the service line as the Lady Falcons’ service specialist, recording a team-high 72 aces to add to her impressive stats. District 14-5A coaches selected the Lady Falcons’ senior setter to the district’s first team.
Kate Cowan Guyer, Lib., Jr. The move to District 6-6A with the biggest schools in the state and some of the best volleyball talent in the area wasn’t a kind one for Guyer after backto-back district championships in its former Class 6A district. But one of the bright spots for Guyer was the play of its junior libero, as Cowan rarely saw a ball she couldn’t get to. Cowan racked up a team-high 690 digs to earn Libero of the Year honors on the 6-6A all-district team. She also did some damage from the service line with 15 aces.
Maddie DeGuire Argyle, Lib., Sr. The Lubbock Christian signee is one of the more consistent back-row defenders in Argyle history. It could be argued she was one of the top defenders in the entire Denton area given her versatility and ability to make any play. DeGuire played in three state tournaments with the Lady Eagles and finished her season with 595 digs, 57 aces and 165 assists while being named Libero of the Year in District 9-4A. DeGuire was also named MVP of the Texas Girls Coaches Association All-Star Game.
Halee Van Poppel Argyle, OH, Sr. Van Poppel, the daughter of former Major League Baseball pitcher Todd Van Poppel, was the epitome of a big-game player for an Argyle team that lost seven seniors from its 2015 state title team before returning to the state championship in 2016. Every time the defending champs needed a big play, Van Poppel came through — and in a variety of ways. That was no more true than in the region final when she poured in 29 kills with four aces and 34 digs in a five-set win over Carthage that advanced Argyle to the state tournament for the fourth time in five seasons. Van Poppel, who is as competitive as they come, finished her senior year with 583 kills, 65 aces, 581 digs and 45 blocks. Her kill total was actually higher than the 501 kills former Lady Eagle and current Texas Tech player Eighmy Dobbins had last year while being named co-offensive player of the year. Van Poppel has signed to play at Belmont in Nashville.
MOST VERSATILE PLAYER
SETTER OF THE YEAR
Micayla Porter Aubrey, S, Sr. The Northern Michigan signee was named District 11-4A’s setter of the year after delivering 521 assists on the season for an Aubrey team that qualified for the playoffs and compiled a 26-13 record. Porter was all over the floor for the Lady Chaparrals, leading the team in kills with 319 while also keeping defenses off balance with her lethal service game, putting down 118 aces on the season. She was a standout defender, leading her team with 315 digs.
Brynn Warnack Ryan, S, Sr.
Rhett Robinson Krum, MB, Jr. Rhett Robinson has been a staple in the lineup for Krum. A three-year starter for the Lady Cats, Robinson led her team in kills (377), kills per set (2.9) and blocks (146) in a season when Krum reached the regional semifinal. She added 45 aces and recorded a .278 hitting percentage. District 9-4A coaches selected Robinson as the district’s most valuable hitter. Robinson ended her year as a Texas Girls Coaches Association Class 4A all-state selection.
ALL-AREA SECOND TEAM Emily Acker Denton, S, Sr. As the District 5-5A Setter of the Year, Acker led the Lady Broncos to their sixth consecutive playoff appearance and primed the their offense throughout the season as she dished out 616 assists. She also was the top server on the team with 48 aces while also adding on 32 kills.
Warnack, a Lubbock Christian signee, was always a solid player for Ryan. But her quick assent in 2016 to becoming the face of this year’s Lady Raider team was undeniable. The senior setter put together a record-setting season while guiding Ryan to an unbeaten run through District 5-5A and a spot in the second round of the playoffs. Warnack capped her high school career as the program’s all-time assists leader with 2,050. She racked up a single-season record of 1,233 assists while playing all six rotations for the Lady Raiders. Warnack added 391 digs, 73 kills, 27 aces and 33 blocks.
Krum, OH/S, Sr.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR Trying to peg Roberts as an offensive standout or a defensive stalwart is impossible. The Delaware signee was once again an all-around threat in Krum’s second straight run to the regional semifinal in Class 4A. Roberts played several roles for Krum and was truly a facilitator as much as she was a lethal offensive weapon. As a setter, Roberts tallied 626 assists. When she wasn’t setting up her teammates, she was leading the Krum attack with 339 kills, which was good for second on the team. She also tied for the team lead with 45 aces, had 61 blocks and was a strong defensive presence with 326 digs.
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Bailey Dolezalek Lake Dallas, RS, Jr. She was an all-around difference maker for the Lady Falcons as she supplied both offense and defense for a Lake Dallas squad that was ousted in the first round of the playoffs. She put down 331 kills on the season with a stellar .310 hitting percentage while also coming up with 136 digs.
Elizabeth Donnelly Guyer, OH, Sr. The senior outside hitter capped her high school career and a tough season for her team by putting up some quality numbers. Donnelly followed up a breakout junior season by leading the Lady Wildcats with 325 kills and also compiled 88 digs to go with 13 blocks.
Allison White Argyle, MB, Sr. White first burst onto the scene in 2014 as a sophomore, and she has continued to take her game up a notch with each passing year. The Texas Tech signee shouldered a heavy load in 2016 alongside fellow senior Halee Van Poppel on an Argyle team that was considerably younger in comparison to previous years. With Van Poppel holding down the fort offensively, White was a legit force on defense with 177 blocks and 201 digs. Not to be outdone, White also poured in 321 kills, 62 aces and 35 assists. She had a .328 hitting percentage as Argyle rolled to the Class 4A state title game.
Greer Koonce Sanger, S, So. As a first-teamer in a tough District 9-4A, Koonce was the catalyst to the Lady Indians’ offense as their setter. She dished out 378 assists while also finishing second on the team with 214 kills. She tied with Gabbi Roelofs with 48 aces to lead the team and she had just under 30 blocks with 33 digs.
Kelsie Roberts Krum, Lib., Sr. Roberts was one of the core players on a deep Krum squad that reached the regional semifinal. The senior libero was usually seen diving on the floor to keep the ball alive. She recorded 544 digs, 4.4 digs per set and had a 94% serving percentage.
Ashley Schroeder Ryan, MB, Jr. Pacing a high-octane team both on offense and defense, Schroeder was one of Ryan’s most improved players. She finished her junior year with 318 kills and a .348 hitting percentage. She racked up 104 blocks and 109 digs in helping guide Ryan to the playoffs for the first time since 2011.
COACH OF THE YEAR
Ryan, OH, Jr. With a steady setter as the backbone of Ryan’s team, it was bound to have at least one dominant outside hitter. Terry was just that for a Lady Raider team that was itching to make it back to the playoffs after a four-year hiatus. She was a machine on offense and gave the once-struggling Ryan offense a credible threat as she rolled up 428 kills and 55 aces while also chipping in 57 blocks defensively. The good news for Terry is that she didn’t have to shoulder the entire load. Ryan had plenty of talent, but Terry found a way to stand out while being named Co-Offensive Player of the Year in District 5-5A.
Ponder Ponder entered the season under its first-year head coach, who served as an assistant coach in 2015 before taking over the reins of the program in 2016. Prior to her debut season as a head coach, Ponder had never made the postseason, but that all changed in 2016. Lancaster’s Lady Lions finished second in District 9-3A to earn the first playoff appearance in program history, and once they got there, they hung around. Ponder made a run to the Class 3A Region II tournament before bowing out just shy of the state tournament.
Denton Record-Chronicle file photos, feature shot of Van Poppel by Jeff Woo