SIOUX FALLS — The lethal duo that led Roosevelt to its third Class AA state volleyball championship in seven years also highlights the first team selections of the South Dakota Volleyball Coaches Association all-state team announced today.
Senior right side Ashley Beaner and junior middle hitter Maggie DeJong were among seven first-teamers, but were arguably two of the more dominant players in the state, saving their best for the state tournament in Rapid City.
DeJong, who tallied a blistering .530 kill percentage with 295 kills this season, led the Riders in kills in each of the team’s three state tournament matches, while Beaner (.410 kill percentage for 230 kills) consistently tormented teams with a southpaw swing.
“Even when we block her in practice, it’s a hard ball to block and a hard ball to adjust to because you’re going against your opposite shoulder,” said Roosevelt coach Holly Lynch of the lefty Beaner.
For as powerful as the Riders’ offense was this season, the all-around play from DeJong and Beaner is what made the eventual state champions such a dominant force. Along with combining for 140 blocks, the tandem recorded at least 230 digs apiece to display a much-improved effort in the back row.
“Both of these girls last year didn’t play the back row, but both were six-rotation players this year,” said Lynch. “We didn’t have to take them out of the game, which was a huge benefit to us because they’re both phenomenal athletes.”
Washington’s primary weapon, senior middle hitter Emma Hanson, also earned first team honors after pacing the team with 283 kills and 262 digs. Hanson guided the Warriors to a state runner-up finish with 4.8 kills per set during the tournament, capping a strong career.
“Emma was our catalyst all year long. She did exactly what was expected of her,” said Washington coach LaDawn Nesje. “She needed to be either one or two in kill leaders every single match. She developed her back row very well and turned into a good defensive player for us.”
Yankton senior Mikala Hora (376 kills, 250 digs), Rapid City Central senior Lauren Schad (310 kills, 163 blocks) and six-foot-four Mitchell junior Taylin Alm (274 kills) rounded out the first team middle hitters along with Aberdeen Central outside hitter Lauren McCafferty, who finished with 175 kills and 145 digs.
Rapid City Stevens senior Anna Sykora was the lone setter chosen overall, earning one of seven second-team selections with 665 assists, 177 digs, 74 kills and 51 blocks.
Huron senior middle hitter Katelyn Allerdings, who led all hitters with 6.4 kills per set at the state tournament, was also selected to the second team with 304 kills and 887 blocks.
Other second-team selections include O’Gorman sophomore outside hitter Taryn Kloth (214 kills, 165 digs), Brookings senior outside hitter Mack Rief (276 kills, 135 digs), Lincoln junior middle block Steph Buss (295 kills), Washington junior libero Ellie Benson (433 digs) and Mitchell senior libero Megan Farnham, who tallied 522 digs this season and led all players with 7.1 digs per set at state.
CLASS AA ALL-STATE
Mikala Hora, Yankton, sr., MH: 376 kills, 250 digs, 41 blocks, 26 aces Lauren Schad, Rapid City Central, sr., MH: 310 kills, 62 digs, 163 blocks, 26 aces, Emma Hanson, Washington, sr., MH: 283 kills, 262 digs, 44 blocks, 29 aces Taylin Alm, Mitchell, jr., MH: 374 kills, 58 digs, 45 blocks, 18 aces Ashley Beaner, Roosevelt, sr., RS: 230 kills, 233 digs, 53 blocks, 19 aces Maggie DeJong, Roosevelt, jr., MH: 295 kills, 239 digs, 87 blocks, 28 aces Lauren McCafferty, Aberdeen Central, sr., OH: 175 kills, 145 digs, 37 blocks, 48 aces
Katelyn Allerdings, Huron, sr., MH: 304 kills, 87 blocks, 80 digs, 11 aces Anna Sykora, Rapid City Stevens, sr., S: 665 assists, 177 digs, 74 kills, 30 aces, 51 blocks Taryn Kloth, O’Gorman, so., OH: 214 kills, 165 digs, 39 blocks, 52 aces Mack Rief, Brookings, sr., OH: 276 kills, 135 digs, 33 blocks, 39 aces Ellie Benson, Washington, jr., L: 433 digs, 14 kills, 10 assists, 23 aces Steph Buss, Lincoln, jr. MB: 295 kills, 63 digs, 67 blocks, 15 aces Megan Farnham, Mitchell, sr., L: 522 digs, 16 kills, 12 assists, 22 aces
*Regular season stats
For the complete article see the 12-01-2012 issue.
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