Doom, Weber highlight Class A all-state teamThe two hitter-setter combinations that headlined the state championship match and two explosive all-around players comprise the first team of the South Dakota Class A Volleyball All-State Team, announced today (Thursday). Middle blocker Jilanne Doom and setter Keaya Weber of state champion Wagner, outside hitter Megan Nedved and setter Sami Nygaard of state runner-up Milbank, Chester middle hitter Kelsey Backus and Elk Point-Jefferson outside hitter Chrissy Strassburg comprised the elite list, as selected by the South Dakota Volleyball Coaches Association.
By: James D. Cimburek, Yankton Press & Dakotan
The two hitter-setter combinations that headlined the state championship match and two explosive all-around players comprise the first team of the South Dakota Class A Volleyball All-State Team, announced today (Thursday).
Middle blocker Jilanne Doom and setter Keaya Weber of state champion Wagner, outside hitter Megan Nedved and setter Sami Nygaard of state runner-up Milbank, Chester middle hitter Kelsey Backus and Elk Point-Jefferson outside hitter Chrissy Strassburg comprised the elite list, as selected by the South Dakota Volleyball Coaches Association.
The four all-state selections from the title showdown did not disappoint in that match.
Doom had 17 kills, 23 digs and two ace serves, and Weber had 55 assists and 20 digs in leading the Red Raiders to the 3-1 victory. Nygaard finished with 34 assists, two ace serves and 18 digs, while Nedved had a team-high 17 kills, as well as two ace serves and a team-high 24 digs.
Nygaard, a repeat selection from a year ago, sparked Milbank’s run to the Class A title match three years after having to sit out the Bulldogs’ last title appearance due to illness.
“She was a four-year starter for us. In her first year, 2006, she went down right before the post-season and was out for six weeks, so she didn’t get to go to state,” said Milbank head coach Nancy Hoeke. “I wanted her to get one more chance to play in a title match.”
Nygaard finished the season with 831 assists, 334 digs, 52 ace serves and 79 kills. The 5-4 setter is headed to Northern State University next fall.
Nedved, an outside hitter was the recipient of many of Nygaard’s assists, finishing with 369 kills to go with 71 ace serves and 296 digs.
Weber, a second-team selection a year ago, led the state with 1,012 assists entering state tournament play. The 5-8 setter also posted 56 kills and 161 digs on the season.
Weber started for the Red Raiders in 2007 as one of two setters in the lineup. Last year, the reins were turned over to her, and the result has been two state championships and only two losses in two seasons. This year, she led a team that had some of the top hitters in the state, including Doom and second team selection Kami Hoeke. Weber’s court vision helped keep defenses honest.
“Keaya does a really good job of seeing the opponents’ blocks and getting the ball away from them as much as possible,” said Wagner head coach Amy Tyler. “She has good vision that way.”
Doom, a 5-10 middle blocker, racked up 315 kills and 60 blocks at the net, as well as 68 ace serves and 237 digs away from it. She was a precision weapon, hitting an astounding .421 for the season.
While Doom could demolition opponents at the net, she excelled away from it as well.
“Her goal before her junior year was to play all the way around,” Tyler noted. “I loved it when Jilanne played in the front, but I was confident when she was in the back, too.”
Backus, the only all-state selection not to play in the state tournament, had 404 kills, 76 blocks, 29 ace serves and 123 digs on the season. One of the more explosive athletes in the state, she had 30 kills in the 3-2 loss to Wagner that eliminated the Flyers from state tournament contention.
Strassburg, the smallest hitter honored by the SDVBCA, was an explosive weapon for a Huskies team that finished sixth at state. The 5-4 dynamo finished the regular season with 294 kills and 40 ace serves, as well as 400 digs.
An explosive athlete who finished second in the 400 and third in the 200 at last spring’s state track meet, Strassburg used her burst to overcome her size at the net.
Nine players were named to second team, including Chester Area senior setter Katelin Anderson, an honorable mention selection in Class B a year ago; and Mobridge-Pollock junior middle hitter Sarah Dady, an honorable mention selection in Class A last season. Also honored on the second team were Hoeke of Wagner, a senior left-side hitter; Harrisburg senior outside hitter Kristin Ackermann; Miller Area senior middle hitter Marisa Blackwell; Custer senior middle hitter Melissa Flores; Platte-Geddes junior middle hitter Emily Johnson; Sioux Valley senior outside hitter Brooke Olson; and Sioux Falls Christian senior libero Abby Van Gorp.
Honorable mention honorees include Elkton-Lake Benton senior middle hitter Rachel Krogman, Mobridge-Pollock junior middle hitter Erin Rabenberg, Chamberlain senior setter Kelli Swenson and Sioux Falls Christian senior outside hitter Kiley Velgersdyk.