Girls' Volleyball Athlete of the Year
Westwood High School, Round Rock, Texas
Grote, a 5-foot-10 setter, completed one of the outstanding careers in
Texas girls volleyball history by leading Westwood High to the state
Class 5A championship. She was voted the state tournament's Most
Valuable Player. Grote had 926 assists and 33 aces as a senior. She was
selected to the All-State Team as a junior and senior by the Texas Girls
Coaches Association, was a two-time Central Texas Player of the Year,
and was selected to the Texas Sportswriters Association All-State Team.
Grote also was selected the Gatorade Texas High School Player of the
Year. "Athletes like Laura Grote are the success stories produced in
high school athletics today," NHSCA executive director Bob Ferraro said.
"She has worked extremely hard to develop her skills and has become one
of the best players not only in the state of Texas, but the entire
nation, and we are proud to be honoring her."
"In 30 years of coaching, Laura Grote is the best setter that I have
ever taught," said her high school coach, Zula Blann. Also an
outstanding student, Grote ranks in the top 10 per cent of her class
academically. She has accepted a scholarship to continue her volleyball
career at Texas Tech University.
Bonita Vista High School, Chula Vista, California
"Athletes like Jennifer Saleaumua are among the success stories
produced in high school athletics today," NHSCA executive director Bob
Ferraro said. "She has worked extremely hard to develop her skills and
has become one of the best volleyball players not only in the state of
California, but the entire nation, and we are proud to be honoring her."
A 5-foot-10 outside hitter, Saleaumua, who will attend the University
of Hawaii, led Bonita Vista High to a 40-0 record, the California state
title, and national title recognition as well. In a five-game title
match victory over Stockton St. Mary's High, Saleaumua recorded 57
kills, a state and national record. She was selected National Player of
the Year by SchoolSports.com.
Canyon del Oro High School, Tucson, Arizona
"Athletes like Bre Ladd are among the success stories produced in high
school athletics today," NHSCA executive director Bob Ferraro said. "She
has worked extremely hard to develop her skills and has become one of
the best volleyball players not only in the state of Arizona, but the
entire nation, and we are proud to be honoring her."
A 6-foot-1 outside hitter, Ladd piled up national honors while
rewriting her school's record books. This season, she piled up 428
kills, breaking her own school record by more than 100, and added 110
blocks, 163 digs, and 58 service aces to lead Canyon del Oro to the
Class 5A state quarterfinals. She had 21 kills in a match, also a school
record, and her career totals include 971 kills, 280 blocks, and 146
A member of the U.S. Junior National Team, Ladd was selected as the
Gatorade National Player of the Year and as the National Player of the
Year by SchoolSports.com. Ladd also was an outstanding student with a 3.4 grade-point average, and earned a scholarship to the University of Arizona. Sports Illustrated magazine also recognized Ladd's distinguished career with a mention in its "Faces in the Crowd" section this year.
Timpanogos High School, Orem, Utah
"Kristin Richards has been setting the standard for youth volleyball
players across the nation for several years now," said NHSCA executive
director Bob Ferraro. "For this reason, the NHSCA is proud to honor
Kristin as the National High School Senior Volleyball Athlete of the
A four-time all-state player in her home state of Utah, Richards also
received numerous national awards throughout her prep career. A two-time
All-American, the recipient of several player of the year honors
nationally, this team captain led her squad to a state championship as a
senior. Richards has also represented the U.S. for the past three
summers on national teams, ever since being selected captain of the 2000
U.S. National Youth Team. She will continue her academic and athletic
careers at Stanford University.
Fraser High School, Fraser, Michigan
Michigan's Angie McGinnis of Fraser High School is this year's NHSCA
Senior Athlete of the Year in volleyball. McGinnis, a 6-0 setter, was a
three-time all-state selection and two-time first team member who was
named Michigan's Miss Volleyball for 2003-04. She led her Fraser High
squad to back-to-back state championships after a second-place finish in
her sophomore season. McGinnis will next play for the decorated
volleyball program at the University of Florida.
Wilson Classical High School, Long Beach, California
The first female athlete - and only the fourth in any sport - to be
voted the Gatorade National Player of the Year twice, the 6-foot-1
outside hitter/middle blocker averaged 18.3 kills, 1.57 blocks and 2
aces per match, leading Wilson Classical High to the Southern Section
Division I-AA semifinals. She posted a kill percentage of .840 in the
semifinal loss to eventual champion Mira Costa High. An alternate on the
2004 U.S. Olympic Team, Barboza was Volleyball magazine's High School
Player of the Year, Division I-AA co-MVP and a four-time California
Interscholastic Federation First Team All-State selection. Also a
straight-A student, she will attend Stanford University.
Riverside High School, Durham, North Carolina
Considered the finest player in North Carolina high school history, the
6-foot-3 Hodge totaled 363 kills, 30 blocks, 197 digs, 109 assists and
86 aces as a senior. She is a two-time winner of the Gatorade North
Carolina Player of the Year award and was selected as the Gatorade
National Player of the Year this year. A two-time member of the USA
Volleyball Girls Youth National Team, Hodge is following in the
footsteps of her parents, Michael and Carmen Hodge, who were members of
the Virgin Islands national volleyball teams. She holds a 4.5
grade-point average, scored 1800 on the SAT and headlines Penn State
University's top-ranked recruiting class.
Mira Costa High School, Manhattan Beach, California
The 6-foot-4 outside hitter led Mira Costa to state titles her
sophomore and senior years, and was named tournament MVP both times.
This year, Mira Costa finished 37-1 and was ranked No. 1 nationally.
Klineman racked up 513 kills as a senior and set school records with 52
service aces and a .494 hitting efficiency percentage. She was selected
the Gatorade National Player of the Year and the PrepVolleyball.com
Senior Player of the Year. Klineman also led the U.S. Women's Junior
National Team to the gold medal in the NORCECA Continental Championships
in 2006, scoring 22 kills, five blocks and an ace in a five-set
title-match win over the Dominican Republic. Also an outstanding student
with a 3.94 grade-point average, she will attend Stanford University.
Joliet Catholic Academy, Joliet, Illinois
The 6-foot-2 outside hitter was named the Gatorade National Player of
the Year after racking up 414 kills, 303 assists, 121 digs, 55 aces and
32 blocks last fall. She led Joliet Catholic Academy to a 34-6 record
and a berth in the Class 3A super-sectionals. That performance came on
the heels of a brilliant junior season, when Murphy led the Angels to a
third-place state finish with 35 kills, 38 assists, 17 digs and eight
aces in the state tournament. Her season totals were 388 kills, 496
assists, 81 aces and 100 blocks. She was recognized by Sports
Illustrated magazine in its "Faces in the Crowd" section. On the
international level, Murphy led the U.S. Women's Junior National Team to
a fourth-place finish in the 2007 Junior World Championships, earning
Best Server honors. Also an outstanding student with a 4.52 grade-point
average, she will attend the University of Florida.
Papillion-LaVista High School, Papillion, Nebraska
The 6-foot outside hitter was named the Gatorade National Player of the
Year and an Under Armour First Team All-American after racking up 721
kills, 50 assists, 373 digs, 39 aces and 53 blocks last fall. She led
Papillion-LaVista to a 42-1 record and a second consecutive Class A
state championship. An honorary co-captain of both the Lincoln Journal
Star Super State Team and the Omaha World-Herald All-Nebraska Team as a
senior, Mancuso recorded 32 assists, nine digs, five kills and an ace in
the Monarchs' three-game title-match sweep of Lincoln Northwest High.
On the international level, Mancuso helped lead the U.S. Junior National
team to the NORCECA Junior Continental championship in 2008. A
three-sport athlete who also competed in basketball and track and field,
Mancuso also sported a 4.64 grade-point average. She will attend the
University of Nebraska.
Colorado Springs Christian School, Colorado Springs, Colorado
It’s not often you see a 6-foot-5 setter, but Broekhuis is one of the
best, in addition to her skills on the front line. Colorado Springs
Christian School has now won six consecutive 3A state championships, and
Broekhuis, playing for her father, Mike, has been an integral part of
the last four. A two-time Gatorade Colorado Player of the Year
selection, Broekhuis was named ESPN RISE Player of the Year after
recording 465 kills, 411 assists, 40 blocks, 167 digs and 30 aces to
lead the Lions to a perfect 30-0 record as a senior. She was selected an
Under Armour First Team All-American, played in the Under Armour
All-American match and earned Best Setter honors in the event’s skills
competition. The second-youngest member of the U.S. Women’s Junior
National Team that competed at the FIVB World Championships in Mexico in
2009, Broekhuis also was selected to the U.S. National Training Team in
2008. Broekhuis, who also played basketball for the Lions for three
years, graduated after the fall semester with a 3.7 grade-point average
and enrolled at the University of Nebraska, where she will play her
Courtney Van Groningen
Sterling High School, Sterling, Nebraska
three-sport standout, Van Groningen became one of the state’s most
feared outside hitters despite standing just 5-foot-4. Van Groningen set
an all-class state record with 50 kills in a match as a sophomore, and
this year, she broke her own Class D-2 state record with 642 kills as
she led Sterling, one of the state’s smallest high schools with an
enrollment of only 65 students, to a 30-3 record and the state title
match. Though Sterling lost that match in five sets, Van Groningen
racked up 30 kills, six blocks, 32 digs and three aces. She also
recorded 40 kills in the Lady Jets’ semifinal win, was named the captain
of the D-2 All-Tournament Team and was recognized as the NHSCA/GTM
Sportswear Athlete of the Month for December. She also holds the
all-class state record for career digs (1,907) and the D-2 record for
career kills (1,901). Van Groningen was a four-year starter at shooting
guard for the Lady Jets basketball team, averaging 15 points per game as
a senior and scoring 1,127 career points. She also doubled up at the
state track and field meet last spring, winning the Class D 100 and 300
hurdles crowns. She is favored to repeat in both events this spring and
also is a contender in the 100-meter dash. Van Groningen is signed to
play volleyball at Wayne State University.
Berkeley Preparatory School, Tampa, Florida
The 6-foot-1 outside hitter led the Buccaneers to a 30-2 record and its third consecutive 4A state championship. She amassed553 kills, 514 service receptions, 366 digs, 48 aces, 38 assists and 32 blocks while recording a hitting percentage of .457,earning Florida 4A Player of the Year honors. She had 539kills, 320 digs, 58 blocks and 51 aces as a junior. She was named the Gatorade National Player of the Year after earning Gatorade Florida Player of the Year honors for the third time,and also is a two-time U.S. Girls National Team member. ThePrepVolleyball.com Junior of the Year last year, Burgess received the Florida Dairy Farmers Miss Volleyball award for the second straight year, becoming the first repeat winner in the award’s20-year history, and was named an Under Armour First Team All-American. Also an outstanding student, Burgess has maintained a 3.9 grade-point average, scored 2100 on the SAT and will attend Stanford University. Burgess also is a founding director of Everyone Should Play, an organization that raises funds to help disadvantaged youths with the high cost of playing competitive sports.
Amber and Kadie Rolfzen
Papillion-La Vista South High School, Papillion, Nebraska
Amber and Kadie Rolfzen, who now head together to the University of
Nebraska, had a nearly perfect career at Papillion-La Vista South. The
Rolfzens led the school to a 126-1 record while capturing three straight
Nebraska Class A state titles. In 2012, Amber recorded 390 kills
compared to Kadie’s 369; both recorded 38 blocks; and both were members
of the U.S. Junior Women’s Team in 2011 and 2012.
Assumption HS, Louisville, Kentucky
Alexa Filley, who will attend the University of Auburn in the fall, led her school to a Kentucky state volleyball championship during the 2013-14 school year. The 5-9 setter led her school to a 36-6 record and a national ranking by several national media outlets. Filley, who maintained a 3.95 GPA in the classroom, recorded 1,248 assists, 334 digs, 102 kills, 58 blocks and 41 service aces. As a junior and a senior, she was named MVP of the Kentucky state tournament. Filley is the first Kentucky volleyball player to be honored by the NHSCA.
Lewis-Palmer HS, Monument, Colorado
Alexa Smith, who carries a 4.0 weighted GPA, led her school to a MaxPreps “mythical” national championship in 2014. Smith led the Rangers to a 29-0 record and a second consecutive Class 4A state championship this past season. Smith slammed 362 kills while recording a .519 kill percentage and .393 hitting percentage. The Colorado High School Athletic Association named her 4A Player of the Year. She is a member of the U.S. Women’s Junior National Team.