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Trinity Hennigan, 7, of Barbers Hill has been selected as the 2019 Baytown Sun Select Team Volleyball Player of the Year.

Lady Eagle is area’s top volleyball player

In a year full of personal adversity, Barbers Hill’s Trinity Hennigan found a way to wrestle through the minutiae and lead her volleyball team to a title.

Thanks to a complete skill set as a setter, hitter and defender, Hennigan helped Barbers Hill plow through a brutal non-district schedule that saw the team struggle to a 11-21 record with a number of matches against 6A and 5A powerhouse programs.

Hennigan, who started the season a few weeks late after dealing with an injury, finally got on the court, gained her rhythm and sparked Barbers Hill to an unbeaten District 21-5A title run while earning the moniker of its Most Valuable Player.

With other top performers in the area earning strong mention, Hennigan managed to pull out the 2019 Baytown Sun’s Volleyball Select Player of the Year honors in pushing the Lady Eagles to a 24-win season and area round of the playoffs.

Hennigan who played setter in a 6-2 attack, was a Lady Eagles co-captain and a six-rotation player while leading her team in assists, digs, kills and assists.

All told, she had 484 assists, 319 digs, 152 kills with a .328 hitting percentage and 47 aces playing one less month than most other top players in the area.

“I feel like my game this year was the best that it could be due to the fact of all the difficulties I have had to 

overcome,” Hennigan said. “Volleyball is like my escape from reality, whenever I just need time to myself the court was always the place to go.”

The Barbers Hill coaching staff appreciated everything Hennigan gave the program.

“I could not have asked anymore of Trin this year,” Barbers Hill head coach Kristin Goodman said. “She has persevered through so much this year, it’s incredible that she finished so strong.  I knew she could do it, but at times, Trinity didn’t think she could. 

“Trinity can and did do everything asked of her.  She has led Barbers Hill to three successful consecutive seasons, and our future setters have some big shoes to fill.”

Hennigan missed most of August due to injury her ankle after being bucked off of a horse and battled with pain throughout the rest of the season but refused to not play.

“This team has overcome a lot of adversity and has shown a lot of heart for the game,” Hennigan said. “When talking about Barbers Hill volleyball, one thing that I will never forget was the trips to volleypalooza, and the friendships made on this team.”

REST OF THE SELECT TEAM

Kaitlyn Herrera, GCM, junior: She finished with 707 digs on the season and only had 51 errors from 837 service receptions. Her dig total broke the school season record while playing her first year as a libero.

Naomi Hockless, REL, junior: The Lady Gander bounced back from an injury that shortchanged her sophomore year and aided the REL rebuild with a solid season. She had 122 kills in district play while hitting .245 and added 23 total blocks, 33 digs and 10 aces while opposing defenses keyed on her nightly. “As a middle blocker, her defensive stats are great given the minimal amount of time she spent on the back row,” REL head coach Mary Grosjean said. “She definitely came back this season fighting.”

Kylee Kejonen, Barbers Hill, senior: She finished the season with a .439 hitting percentage, 210 kills, 61 solo blocks and 71 total blocks. “She plays with great energy, is great hustler, our serving middle, one of our hardest workers,” Goodman said. “She plays so much bigger than her frame.”

Taylor Kotlarz, GCM, junior: Kotlarz wrapped the season with 320 kills including a big, 22-kill performance in the bi-district defeat against Barbers Hill. “It was apparent to see the impact Taylor had on our team,” GCM head coach Casey Veen said.  “You could guarantee that she was going to slam a ball at the opponent, which they typically were not ready for. Her aggressive nature gave us the edge in crucial moments.” 

Zoe Martinez, GCM, sophomore: The Lady Patriot had 591 assists in a two-setter rotation and provided big points from the service line recording 84 aces – breaking the school record for 146 in a career with two full seasons left to play. “She is a relentless young athlete that commands the court,” Veen said. “Anyone watching knows that when she steps on the court, she is about to do some great things. She leads by example and demonstrates what exactly a coach wants from their players. She is very level-headed and does not show any negative emotion.” 

Jasmine Moore, Sterling, senior: The outgoing Lady Ranger finished her career with 357 kills while hitting .374. She also played a solid backrow, picking up 212 digs. “She is a smart player and is super aggressive,” Sterling head coach Candace Southall said. “Jasmine took the leadership role this year and has grown as a player. She has great ball placement and really knows how to make a play. Jasmine plays a major role in our team functioning.”

Bailee St. Romain, Sterling, junior: It was a nice preview to a potential blockbuster senior year for St. Romain who tallied 320 kills, 159 digs.

Charde VanZandt, Crosby, senior: The high-flying Lady Cougar ended her career hitting .347 with 166 kills, 49 blocks, 26 aces and 69 digs. “She helped keep us up and reignited the energy to shift the momentum our way when she would get a huge kill or stuff block on the other team,” Crosby head coach Marissa Simmons said. “She was a sort of mother hen to the younger offensive players on the court to make sure they don’t get discouraged or be too hard on themselves.

Kelsi Wingo, Barbers Hill, sophomore: With a bang, Wingo burst onto the scene with 707 assists, 292 digs, 58 aces and 225 kills while registering a .364 hitting percentage.

HONORABLE MENTION

Sydney Bertrand, Anahuac,  senior

Jordan Burnett, Barbers Hill, junior

Sasha Donaie, Baytown Christian, sophomore

Elizabeth Easley, GCM, senior

Marissa Flores, REL, senior

Jenna Johnson, Crosby, senior

Kayla Jones, Sterling, senior

Sarah Lankford, Barbers Hill, senior

Kaitlyn Stork, Sterling, senior

Erin Willcox, Anahuac, sophomore

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