Here are the weekly Belleville News-Democrat Game Balls given to area volleyball players for some top performances last week:
- Columbia senior outside hitter Colene Hamilton delivered a career-high 19 kills last week in the 5-0 Eagles’ come-from-behind three-set victory over Althoff. Hamilton is among the St. Louis area kill leaders with 39 through 10 games.
- Mascoutah junior Tieghan Morio dropped 15 kills on the Mater Dei Knights in the Indians’ season opener, then added 11 more in a win over Red Bud. Indians’ setter Kamrynn Voypick added 28 assists in the win, then had 29 more assists in a victory over Red Bud.
- Gibault’s Kelly Dooley turned in a double-double with 12 kills and 10 digs last week in the Hawks’ victory over Wesclin. The Hawks’ Hillary Wessel is among the St. Louis area leaders in assists (7.1 per game) and service aces (16).
- A starter since last season, Freeburg’s Maddie Hurd is off to a great start as a junior. Against Waterloo, she led her team by racking up 10 kills on 17 attempts. Hurd continued her hot streak against Belleville East with three kills on six attempts, then added five kills on nine attempts Tuesday in a victory over Collinsville.
- Edwardsville junior Rachel Pranger had 12 kills in the Tigers’ season-opening win over Springfield Southeast.
- Freeburg junior Miranda Schulte had eight kills and 14 digs in a win over Waterloo. Schulte had another big night against Belleville East, delivering had 6 kills and 10 digs before ading seven kills and five digs Tuesday against Collinsville.
- In a three-set loss to Freeburg, Waterloo libero Megan Gilliam turned in high efficiency numbers on serve receive (27-of-30, 90 percent) and digs (37-of-40, 93 percent). Waterloo also got 10 kills from Sam Kruse against Freeburg.
- Metro-East Lutheran senior setter Lydia Flaherty had a combined 12 kills, 28 assists, 27 service points and 12 aces in her last two matches. Flaherty, who also had 23 assists ,three kills and five aces in a three-set loss to Alton, has meant even more to the Knights with top middle hitter Ellen Schulte out with a knee injury.
- (To nominate players for Game Balls, coaches should email Norm Sanders at email@example.com)
BND Girls Volleyball Rankings
Rankings for metro-east teams; voting by area coaches and News-Democrat staff. First-place votes are in parentheses.
Large school rankings (Class 3A-4A)
Also receiving votes: Freeburg (3-0), Waterloo (0-2), Highland (1-0), Central (0-1), Altom (2-1), Belleville East (0-2)
Small school rankings (Class 1A-2A)
Also receiving votes: Wesclin (3-1), Nashville (2-4), Carlyle (2-0-1), Lebanon (0-2), Metro-East Lutheran (2-5)