By RICK PETERSON
Seaman, which won its first Class 5A state championship, put four players on the TopSports.news 2023 All-Shawnee County volleyball team, led by player of the year Maegan Mills.
Mills, a junior, is joined on the all-county first team by Viking seniors Brooklyn Gormley and Taylin Stallbaumer and junior Reagan McGivern while Seaman's Tatiana Dowling, a Seaman grad, was named the coach of the year after leading the Vikings to a 38-6 record, including five straight-set wins in the state tournament.
Mills and Gormley are first-team repeaters while Stallbaumer and McGivern move up to the first team after being second-teamers in 2022.
Silver Lake, which placed third in the 3A state tournament, is represented on the first team by seniors Mckinley Kruger and Sarah Wehrli and junior Ella Bolan, with Kruger and Wehrli earning all-county honorable mention a year ago.
Washburn Rural seniors Jada Ingram and Zoe Canfield and junior Layla Collins are first-team selections after helping the Junior Blues win the Centennial League championship and advance to the 6A state tournament.
Ingram and Canfield are both first-team All-Shawnee County repeat picks while Collins moves up from the second team.
Rossville, which posted a 31-8 record, is represented on the first team by seniors Kinsey Perine, a three-time All-Shawnee County first-teamer, and Kinley Porter, who moves up from the second team.
Cair Paravel Latin is represented by senior Mayah Pridgett while Topeka West senior Addison Brooks, Shawnee Heights junior Kaydence Torrez and Hayden sophomore Ella Foster also earned all-county first-team recognition.
Pridgett has been a second-team all-county pick the last two seasons while Brooks received honorable mention the past two seasons and Foster and Torrez received honorable mention a year ago.
Rossville freshman Nora Burdiek was selected as the county newcomer of the year after compiling 312 kills and 181 digs in her first season of high school volleyball.
All-Shawnee County first-team capsules:
ELLA BOLAN, SILVER LAKE
Bolan, a junior middle hitter/outside hitter, earns All-Shawnee County honors for the first time after helping Silver Lake post a third-place finish in the Class 3A state tournament, with the Eagles posting a 32-12 record on the year.
A second-team All-Mid-East League pick, Bolan registered 317 kills with 62 blocks and 38 service aces.
"Ella has great volleyball skills and a high volleyball IQ,'' Silver Lake coach Sarah Johnson said. "We heavily relied on her in her offense and defensive play this year. As a six-rotation player, she led our team in kills, blocks and aces. Ella is a force anywhere along the net. She was able to see her opponent and find their weaknesses and often get us out of a tight spot. Looking forward to having her in that Eagle jersey one more year.''
ADDISON BROOKS, Topeka West
A senior rightside hitter for the Chargers, Brooks helped lead Topeka West to a 27-10 record this fall en route to earning first-team All-Shawnee County honors for the first time in her career.
Brooks was also named to the All-United Kansas Conference first team this fall.
Brooks received All-Shawnee County honorable mention as a sophomore and junior.
ZOE CANFIELD, Washburn Rural
Canfield, a senior setter/rightside hitter, is an All-Shawnee County first-team repeater after helping Washburn Rural reach the Class 6A state tournament for the fourth straight time in her prep career, including a state championship in 2022. Canfield finished her career with 2,659 assists, which ranks third on Rural's all-time list.
As a senior Canfield served 97.7 percent with 24 aces, had 578 assists, 13 block kills and 37 attack kills after returning to action at midseason from an ACL injury suffered during the '22-'23 basketball season.
"Zoe came back about halfway through the season and did a tremendous job of getting back in a rhythm with the offense,'' Rural coach Kevin Bordewick said. "She is a tremendous leader and has a mind for the game, and we really took off when she came back. She is a tough kid who competes.''
LAYLA COLLINS, Washburn Rural
A junior leftside hitter, Collins moves up to the All-Shawnee County first team after being a second-team pick as a sophomore. Collins played a major role for Washburn Rural's Class 6A state championship team in 2022 and helped the Junior Blues reach the state tournament this fall, with Rural posting a 29-12 record on the year.
Collins registered 291 kills this fall wiith .232 hitting efficiency, 91.5 percent serving and 48 aces.
"Layla had a great season, as she had to pick up and contribute more than what she had to last year if we were to get back to state,'' Bordewick said. "She developed more weapons on off-speed attacks, which helped keep the defense off-balance. Layla has a tremendous arm, and was an excellent option for our offense to use. She has developed into a more intense competitor as well.''
ELLA FOSTER, Hayden
A sophomore libero, Foster moves up to the All-Shawnee County first team after earning honorable mention as a freshman. Foster helped lead the Wildcats to a Class 3A sub-state championship match.
Foster has 616 total digs in her two seasons at Hayden, including 477 this fall. Foster had a 95.9 serving percentage over the 2023 season with 12 aces.
"Ella is one of my most fearless leaders,'' Hayden coach Corrinne McGreevy said. "I tell her all the time to put your helmet on and step up and dig the ball. She did that for me all season long. She's the athlete in the back row that you want because she is a playmaker. She makes things happen. I love her will and want to win every time she steps on the court.''
BROOKLYN GORMLEY, Seaman
Gormley, a senior middle hitter, is a two-time All-Shawnee County first-team pick after being a second-team pick as a sophomore. Gormley was also an All-United Kansas Conference first-team repeat pick and a three-time All-Class 5A State Tournament selection.
Gormley registered 251 kills for the 38-6 Vikings this fall while hitting at a .290 clip and had 84 total blocks. Gormley also recorded 87 digs and 44 service aces.
"Brooklyn has the ability to make any set look like a great set,'' Seaman coach Tatiana Dowling said. "She's very shotty and finds the open spot when we give her the ball. For this reason, she was one of our most effecitve hitters this season and the person we tried to feed the ball to as much as we could when we were in system especially, but we also tried to force the set to her. She will be missed next year.''
JADA INGRAM, Washburn Rural
Ingram, a senior leftside hitter, was an All-Class 6A State Tournament selection for the second straight season and earns All-Shawnee County first-team recognition for the third straight season after helping the Junior Blues reach state each of her four high school seasons, including the 2022 state championship. Ingram ended her prep career with 1,188 kills, which ranks No. 5 on Washburn Rural's all-time list.
Ingram finished her season 578 kills on .272 hitting efficiency while registering 15 block kills, serving 91.5 percent with 29 aces and finishing with 232 digs.
"Jada switched to the left side as a hitter this year and we depended on her a lot, as she almost doubled her kills from her three previous varsity seasons,'' Bordewick said. "It was an adjustment she needed to make for the betterment of the team, and she did a tremendous job.''
MCKINLEY KRUGER, Silver Lake
Kruger, a senior, helped lead Silver Lake to a 32-12 record and a third-place finish in the Class 3A state tournament. Kruger moves up to the All-Shawnee County first team after earning all-county honorable mention as a junior.
Kruger finished the 2023 season with 487 digs and also earned All-Mid-East League unanimous first-team recognition.
"After two years starting for us as a setter in a 6-2 offense, we were finally able to get Mckinley into that libero jersey, and boy did she sure shine there,'' Johnson said. "Mckinley has a never give up, never give in attitude and was never satisfied with the ball hitting the floor. Ske kept us in tight games with her hustle and heart and great defensive skills.''
REAGAN McGIVERN, Seaman
A junior middle hitter, McGivern helped lead Seaman to its first Class 5A state championship this fall and a 38-6 record and moves up to the All-Shawnee County first team after earning second-team honors a year ago. McGivern was an All-5A State Tournament pick this fall.
McGivern finished the season with 123 kills on .273 hitting efficiency with 61 total blocks.
"Reagan has been a wall for us at the net,'' Dowling said. "When she came back from her injury, we saw many aspects of our game improve, including our defense because she is able to slow balls down with touches at the net. She also has the ability to provide a terrific court presence and stepped up for us at the state tournament as a leader.''
MAEGAN MILLS, Seaman
A junior outside hitter, Mills was named the Shawnee County player of the year after helping lead Seaman to a 38-6 record and its first Class 5A state championship. Mills was named the United Kansas Conference offensive player of the year for the second straight season and is an all-county repeat pick after being named the county newcomer of the year as a freshman. Mills.earned All-5A State Tournament recognition for the second straight season..
Mills was credited with 418 kills on .295 hitting efficiency while compiling a total of 62 blocks. Mills had 51 service aces and 197 digs.
"Maegan is a force for us on the court,'' Dowling said. "She is our go-to hitter and worked extremely hard to be able to play all the way around this year. Her ball control is second to none and she reads the hit extremely well. In addition to this, Maegan is extremely strong and sees the court so well. I'm excited to have her back for another year.''
KINSEY PERINE, Rossville
A senior, Perine is a three-time All-Shawnee County first-team pick and was a unanimous All-Mid-East League first-team selection for the fourth straight year after helping lead the Bulldawgs to a 31-8 record this season.
A multi-sport standout for the Bulldawgs, Perine finished her high school career with 1,828 kills and 1,150 digs.
"Kinsey is an outstanding athlete and person,'' Rossville coach Dani Dodge said. "She is such a hard worker and will always put 110 percent into every practice and game. Everyone always knows who Kinsey is with her monster swings and her exceptional defense. She is a very determined individual and provided a lot of leadership to our team. Really going to miss her next year.''
KINLEY PORTER, Rossville
Porter, a senior, moves up to the All-Shawnee County first team after earning second-team recognition as a junior.
Porter also received unanimous All-Mid-East League first-team recognition after helping lead the Bulldawgs to a 31-8 record this fall. Porter finished her high school career with 1,463 assists.
"Kinley is an exceptional setter,'' Dodge said. "She gets to the ball quickly and sets up our hitters perfectly to get a great swing on the ball. She created an awesome offense with us when running a 5-1. Kinley has such a big heart and always wanted what was best for the team. She always brought her 'A' game and fought hard until the end. Really gonna miss her next year.''
MAYAH PRIDGETT, Cair Paravel Latin
A senior outside hitter, Pridgett earned first-team All-Shawnee County honors after being a second-team pick as a sophomore and junior.
A first-team All-Kaw Valley Conference selection, Pridgett led the 22-7 Lions with 283 kills on .355 hitting efficiency, also a team best.
Pridgett contributed 35 service aces, 22 blocks and 143 digs.
"Mayah led this Lions team to a great season,'' Cair Paravel coach Craig Congdon said. "Not only was she the most dominant hitter, but she was also the captain of the team. She constantly encouraged her teammates, challenged them to be better, and rallied them together in times of adversity.''
TAYLIN STALLBAUMER, Seaman
Stallbaumer, a senior, helped Seaman post a 38-6 record and win the school's first Class 5A state volleyball title and moves up to the All-Shawnee County first team after being a second-team selection as a junior.
Stallbaumer finished her season with 584 assists, 289 digs, 204 kills, 40 total blocks and 33 service aces.
"Taylin is a true competitor and a team player,'' Dowling said. "She is always willing to sacrifice for the good of the team and puts others above herself. In addition, Taylin brings speed and athleticism to the game She does it all for us with ball control, swinging, setting, defense and so much more. Her leadership this year has been impeccable and it has been so much fun to watch her grow into the athlete and person she is today.''
KAYDENCE TORREZ, Shawnee Heights
A junior middle blocker, Torrez was Shawnee Heights' lone returner from the 2022 team and was voted the T-Birds' team captain. Torrez moves up to the All-Shawnee County first team after receiving honorable mention as a sophomore. Torrez also earned first-team All-United Kansas Conference honors this fall.
Torrez registered 155 kills for the T-Birds with 33 solo blocks and 78 total blocks. She also had 22 assists, 91 digs and a 97-percent serving efficiency.
:"Keydence is a dominating player at the net and really stepped up for us this season,'' Shawnee Heights coach Sami Kearney said. "She was a player that the other teams needed to find and to stop. She really stepped into a leadership role and did a great job with that. She had a great season and we are excited to have her back next year.''
SARAH WEHRLI, Silver Lake
Wehrli, a senior setter, helped lead Silver Lake to a third-place finish in the Class 3A state tournament and a 32-12 record overall. Wehrli moves up to the All-Shawnee County first team this fall after earning honorable mention as a junior.
A unanimous first-team All-Mid-East League selection, Wehrli registered 873 assist this past season for the Eagles.
"Sarah has worked so hard these last four years to get to where she is today,'' Johnson said. "She has grown in skill, leadership and confidence and I knew coming into her senior season that she was more than ready to take over the court running our offense as our 5-1 setter. Sarah's court sense and knowledge of her teammates and her opponents continued to grow each day. She came into the gym ready to work and learn to better herself for her team.''
ALL-SHAWNEE COUNTY VOLLEYBALL
Name, school Class
Ella Bolan, Silver Lake Jr.
Addison Brooks, Topeka West Sr.
Zoe Canfield, Washburn Rural Sr.
Layla Collins, Washburn Rural Jr.
Ella Foster, Hayden So.
Brooklyn Gormley, Seaman Sr.
Jada Ingram, Washburn Rural Sr..
Mckinley Kruger, Silver Lake Sr.
Reagan McGivern, Seaman Jr.
Maegan Mills, Seaman Jr.
Kinsey Perine, Rossville Sr.
Kinley Porter, Rossville Sr.
Mayah Pridgett, Cair Paravel Latin Sr.
Taylin Stallbaumer, Seaman Sr.
Kaydence Torrez, Shawnee Heights Jr.
Sarah Wehrli, Silver Lake Sr.
Jo'Mhara Benning, Topeka High Jr.
Taylor Brees, Shawnee Heights Jr.
Alana Brewster, Silver Lake Jr.
Ava Bruno, Washburn Rural Sr.
Nora Burdiek, Rossville Fr.
Campbell Chabot, Seamn Jr.
Ava Esser, Seaman Jr.
Karsyn Hastert, Cair Paravel So.
Kate Hinck, Washburn Rural Jr.
Reese Huscher, Hayden So
Ryan Leathers, Rossville Sr.
Makenzie McDaniel, Silver Lake Sr.
Bella Reid, Hayden Jr.
Siana Sanchez, Topeka West Sr.
Hannah Schmitz, Hayden Sr.
Kinley Wilhelm, Seaman Jr.
Cair Paravel: Amea Lyons, fr. Hayden: Hanna Bartlett, sr.; Avery Grunert, sr. Highland Park: Nevaeh Atkins, so.; Sincere Cooper, fr.; Monya Dean, sr.; Justine Johnson, fr. Rossville: Kendra Hurla, sr.; Katie Spielman, sr. Seaman: Maggie Moulden, jr. Shawnee Heights: Jaidyn Euwer, so.; Reianna Vega, so.; Avery Willey, so. Silver Lake: Kaibryn Kruger, sr.; Jaiden Wise, so.; Jaylie Whitehead, fr.Topeka High: Campbell Dawson, fr.; Kenya German, sr.; Amirah Gibbs, sr. Topeka West: Jaya Miller, sr. Washburn Rural: Macey Jones, sr.
Player of the year -- Maegan Mills, jr., Seaman.
Newcomers of the year -- Nora Burdiek, fr., Rossville.
Coach of the year -- Tatiana Dowling, Seaman