In November, the Hermann Lady Bearcats won their 13th MSHSAA volleyball state championship.
In December, two members of Hermann’s program received additional praise for their performances, claiming the top awards for the 2018 Missourian All-Area Volleyball Awards.
Hermann’s senior setter-hitter Allison Stiers and Head Coach Linda Lampkin received the top awards in this year’s voting by area coaches and media members. The voting included schools from the Four Rivers Conference plus Washington and St. Francis Borgia Regional.
Stiers was the runaway winner for the player of the year award. The senior, who will continue her athletic career with the Columbia College basketball program, received the top vote on all but two ballots. She recorded 68 points, 46 more than runner-up Ella Brinkmann of Borgia.
The Borgia freshman was nine points in front of Hermann sophomore Grace Winkelmann for that position.
A total of nine players from five schools were named on player of the year ballots with both Hermann and Borgia each getting three.
Stiers recorded 302 kills this year while hitting .453. She dished out 437 assists with 42 aces, 33 blocks and 281 digs.
Stiers saved her best match for the biggest moment, recording 14 kills with 23 digs, 17 assists and a block assist in Hermann’s three-game win over Arcadia Valley in the Class 2 title match.
Lampkin, a Missouri Sports Hall of Fame member, received the coach of the year honors after leading the Lady Bearcats to a 33-5-2 record, the Class 2 state championship and the Four Rivers Conference title.
Lampkin finished 30 points in front of Borgia’s Andrea Beaty, who led her Lady Knights to their second Class 3 third-place finish in three seasons.
St. Clair’s Kandice McCuskey was third and was followed by Sullivan’s Sarah Rochleau and Washington’s Susan Harms.
Voting for players was broken down by position groups.
At the middle hitter position, Hermann’s Winkelmann was one of two players to receive first-team recognition on every ballot and the sophomore leads the middles.
She’s joined by Washington’s Kassidy Phillips on the first team.
The outside/rightside hitter positions were shared by Borgia and Washington. Brinkmann was the other unanimous selection, also receiving 75 voting points.
The rest of the first team consisted of Washington’s Josie Kleekamp, Borgia’s Diana Pfeiffer and Washington’s Taylor Bauer.
At the setter position, Borgia’s Abby Lynn and Stiers tied for top vote honors to claim the first-team spots.
The liberos/defensive specialists on the first team were Borgia’s Paige Lynn and Washington’s Kate Freitag.
At middle hitter, the selections were Sullivan’s Mallory Shetley and Borgia’s Sophie Straatmann.
The outside/rightside hitters were Owensville’s Amber Nelms, Sullivan’s Riley Lock, St. Clair’s Hannah Machelett and New Haven’s Claire Meyer.
Second-team setters were Hermann’s Caraline Brune and Pacific’s Grace Smiley.
At libero/defensive specialist, the second-team selections were Pacific’s Genna Nickelson and Borgia’s Annie Arand.
St. Clair controlled the middle hitter position on the third team with Gracie Sohn and Alohilani Bursey being honored.
The third-team outside/rightside hitters were Sullivan’s Kya Harbour, Union’s Taylor Seely, Borgia’s Grace Struttmann and Washington’s Josie Kleinheider.
At the setter spot, Union’s Maddie Helling and New Haven’s McKenzie Pecaut received the honors.
The third-team liberos/defensive specialists were Union’s Haillie Brown and Owensville’s Celeste Brandt.
By position, the honorable mention picks were:
• Middle hitter — Owensville’s Breanna Diestelkamp, Sullivan’s Katie Creek, Union’s Deseray Washington, St. James’ Hannah Marcee and Pacific’s Corynn Boyer;
• Setter — St. James’ Mackenna Rodgers, Washington’s Emma Zanin, Washington’s Jackie Oetterer and Sullivan’s Rylee Denbow; and
• Libero/defensive specialist — Sullivan’s Zariah Richards.
There were no outside/rightside hitters on the honorable mention squad.