Volleyball: 2018 Express-News All-Area team
Co-players of the yearKara McGheeSchool, position: Clark, middle blockerHeight: 6-foot-4Grade: SeniorBest performance: Had 27 kills, a .500 hitting percentage, five aces and two blocks in a five-set victory over Brandeis.Notable: AVCA All-America first team … MaxPreps All-America first team … AVCA Under Armour All-America match participant … Ranked No. 6 in Prep Volleyball’s Senior Aces, which lists the nation’s top players in the class of 2019 … TGCA Class 6A All-State ... District 28-6A MVP … All-tournament at Fraulein Volleyfest and Northside tournament … Had 607 kills, 211 blocks, 116 digs and 47 aces … Signed with BaylorQuotable: “Kara McGhee is a phenomenal student-athlete, and the type of student-athlete every coach hopes for, but only few actually get to experience. Kara is one of the most talented volleyball players in our state. She could easily skate through practices or slack off, and still be the dominant player that she is. But she doesn’t; it’s the exact opposite. I have never had an athlete pursue greatness as much as Kara does.” — Clark coach Melissa MillerCaroline MeuthSchool, position: Churchill, outside hitterHeight: 6-footGrade: SeniorBest performance: Had a school-record 35 kills, .353 hitting percentage, 12 digs and two blocks in win over rival Reagan, helping Churchill earn a share of the District 27-6A title.Notable: AVCA All-America first team … AVCA Under Armour All-America match participant … Ranked No. 59 in Prep Volleyball’s Senior Aces, which lists the nation’s top players in the class of 2019 … TGCA Class 6A All-State ... District 27-6A MVP … MaxPreps/AVCA player of the week (Oct. 11) … All-tournament at Northside tournament and Fraulein Volleyfest ... Had 662 kills, a .349 hitting percentage, 423 digs, 347 assists, 69 blocks and 41 aces … Signed with Notre DameQuotable: “Caroline’s impact on our team and program was immeasurable this season. When you look at stats, it is obvious that she was by far our best player, but Caroline also provided a high standard of excellence and level of leadership for her team. She is greatly respected by her teammates and our coaching staff for her work ethic and her commitment to Churchill volleyball. Looking forward to watching her future at Notre Dame and beyond.” — Churchill coach Jo Anne HultgrenCoach of the yearYami GarciaSchool: O’ConnorAge: 49Head coaching experience: 674-223 in 21 seasons, all at O’ConnorNotable: Hit hard by graduation after advancing to the UIL state tournament for the first time in 2017, including losing three starters to NCAA Division I programs, O’Connor was expected to endure a rebuilding year. With Garcia leading the way, though, the Panthers instead earned a second straight trip to the state tournament. They defeated Reagan in bidistrict, Clemens in the second round, Brandeis in the third round and rallied from a 13-11 deficit in the fifth set by scoring the final four points to top Clark in the Region IV-6A final.Quotable: “This group arrived at the right time. They realized their hard work was worth it and I am so very proud of them.” — GarciaAlso considered for E-N honor: Kristi O’Leary, Jefferson; Monica Gonzales, Harlan; Robyn Wunderlich-Ellis, ClemensNewcomer of the yearJalyn GibsonSchool, position: Brandeis, outside hitterClass: FreshmanNotable: District 28-6A newcomer of the year … Tabbed as Prep Volleyball’s top 72 new impact players, an honor recognizing the nation’s best freshmen or first-time varsity players … Started every match for the Broncos and was second on the team in kills and digs … Tallied 426 kills, 564 digs, 32 aces and 25 blocks.Super TeamMarina De La RosaO’Connor, senior, setter: All-District 28-6A … All-tournament at Fraulein Volleyfest … One of the Panthers’ few returning players off their 2017 state-tournament, her experience and leadership were key in the team making a second straight state-tournament berth … Recorded 675 assists, 386 digs and 27 aces.Gracie GibsonClark, junior, outside hitter: Unanimous All-District 28-6A … All-tournament at Northside ISD event … Missed the 2017 season with a knee injury but returned this year to become a key part of a formidable attack, racking up 291 kills and 85 blocks.Elizabeth “Lillie” HillClemens, junior, libero: All-District 26-6A … MVP of Seguin tournament … All-tournament at prestigious Turner Classic in Pearland … Was integral part in the Buffaloes earning their first district championship, amassing 751 digs, 73 assists and 36 aces.Peyton HummelO’Connor, senior, libero: District 28-6A defensive player of the year … Spearheaded the Panthers’ stingy defense, which was in top form during a playoff run that saw O’Connor stymie some of the area’s top offenses in Reagan, Clemens, Brandeis and Clark … Totaled 673 digs — six per set — and 34 aces … Committed to Colorado College.Hannah MadduxBoerne Champion, senior, outside hitter: TGCA Class 5A All-State … District 26-5A MVP … MVP of Bev Ball tournament in Abilene … Healthy after battling through injuries early in her prep career, this season she racked up an area-best and school-record 724 kills — 5.53 per set — and helped the Chargers advance to the Region IV-5A final for the first time since 2012. Also had 312 digs, 67½ blocks and 41 aces … Signed with South Alabama.Maya SmallsBrandeis, senior, outside hitter: District 28-6A offensive player of the year … All-tournament at North East, Pearland and Smithson Valley competitions … One of the area’s best all-around players, she posted 443 kills, 632 digs, 82 blocks and 40 aces for the Broncos, who advanced to the third round for the second time and first since 2016 when they reached the Region IV-6A final … Signed with St. Edward’sCassidy SteadmanClemens, junior, setter: District 26-6A MVP … All-tournament at Seguin … Engineered one of the area’s most efficient and balanced attacks, recording 1,457 assists. The total, according to MaxPreps, ranks No. 5 in the nation and No. 1 in Texas … She also had 298 digs, 56 kills, 22 blocks and 18 aces.Kylie TrefflichNew Braunfels Canyon, senior, outside hitter: TGCA Class 6A All-State … All-District 26-6A … All-tournament at Turner Classic in Pearland and Fraulein Volleyfest … Netted 545 kills, a .249 hitting percentage, 325 digs, 58 blocks and 20 aces … Reached the 1,000-kill milestone in her final match, a five-set loss in the third-round to Clark … Will play at Texas Tech. Class 6A teamMarina De La Rosa: O’Connor, senior, setterGracie Gibson: Clark, junior, outside hitterElizabeth “Lillie” Hill: Clemens, junior, liberoPeyton Hummel: O’Connor, senior, liberoKara McGhee: Clark, senior, middle hitterCaroline Meuth: Churchill, senior, outside hitterShelby O’Neal: Clemens, junior, outside hitterMaya Smalls: Brandeis, senior, outside hitterCassidy Steadman: Clemens, junior, setterKylie Trefflich: New Braunfels Canyon, senior, outside hitterCo-MVPs: McGhee and MeuthClass 5A teamKiana Fallaha: Harlan, sophomore, outside hitterKamryn Griggs: Medina Valley, junior, outside hitter/setterAyanna Jackson: Harlan, junior, middle blockerKelsey Kleypres: Kerrville Tivy, senior, setterHannah Maddux: Boerne Champion, senior, outside hitterLeandra Miranda: Highlands, senior, setterSkylar Morales: Jefferson, junior, outside hitter/setterPeyton Puhl: Alamo Heights, senior, outside hitterEmmy Riordan: Seguin, senior, outside hitterNoelia Rocha: Jefferson, junior, outside hitterMVP: MadduxClass 4A teamCarolyn Burch: Navarro, junior, liberoMadison McDonald: Pleasanton, senior, setterRiley Mickey: Canyon Lake, senior, outside hitterAddison Mulroney: La Vernia, senior, outside hitterJasmine Nelson: Boerne, junior, outside hitterSierra Pompa: Devine, senior, outside hitterKaycie Shannon: Pleasanton, senior, outside hitterTaylor Skrzycki: La Vernia, senior, outside hitter/setterRose Stuewe: Fredericksburg, senior, outside hitterBrooke Turner: Boerne, senior, outside hitter/setterMVP: MulroneyClass 3A-2A teamChloe Cowan: D’Hanis, senior, outside hitterAsher Haack: Blanco, senior, setterChelsea Kruse: Poth, senior, setter/outside hitterCarlee Lingle: Randolph, junior, outside hitterMakayla Miller: Poth, senior, outside hitter/setterKyleigh Mulanax: Marion, senior, middle hitter/outside hitterLana Pollok: Poth, senior, liberoHanna Srackangast: Blanco, senior, outside hitterTaylor Voelkel: Karnes City, senior, outside hitterNicole Zuhlke: Jourdanton, senior, outside hitterMVP: MillerPrivate schoolsArianna Alvarado: St. Anthony, senior, outside hitterOlivia Arredondo: Antonian, freshman, setterMia Carter: Antonian, junior, outside hitterMichaela Edwards: Antonian, senior, outside hitterMika Garza: Incarnate Word, senior, setter/outside hitterTammy Jo Grohman: St. Anthony, senior, middle hitterJordan Mahan: S.A. Christian, senior, setterTatiana Smith: Incarnate Word, senior, outside hitter/middle blockerCamryn Specia: S.A. Christian, senior, outside hitterFaye Wilbricht: Holy Cross, sophomore, outside hitterMVP: EdwardsTeams were picked by Express-News staff writer Terrence Thomas with input from area coaches.