Times’ all-Pinellas County volleyball
Player of the year
Lauran Eschenroeder, MH, Sr., East Lake
Why we picked her: At various points of this most successful Eagles season, the Player of the Year could have been just about anyone. Brianna McComeskey took over matches, just like Brittnay Estes did, just like Jackie Wegner did, just like Eschenroeder did.
Heck, you could close your eyes and throw a ball over the net and pick whomever it hit, except for the fact that Wegner would have dug it, Rachel Reed would have set it, and any of the other three would have slammed it right back at you. So yeah, you might want to keep your eyes open.
Especially when Eschenroeder started her approach on a play she and Reed, who provided the quick set, dubbed “bang bang.”
Ultimately, it came down to this: who left the biggest imprint on the 2010 season?
That would be Eschenroeder, who led the county’s best team with 342 kills, a .528 attack percentage and 56 blocks.
Future plans: Eschenroeder will attend Savannah (Ga.) College of Art and Design, with hopes of starting on the volleyball team and getting into fashion design and management.
Did you know? Eschenroeder went to state in tennis as a freshman, but decided to try volleyball as a sophomore. Coach Terry Small said the first thing he worked on with Eschenroeder was her footwork. Then he worked on her jumping. Then he tossed her her first ball. She crushed it. “I’ve never seen anyone do something like that before,” he said. “She’s got a gift. I can train kids forever to do that and she just got it right away.”
OH Berkley Whaley, Jr., Lakewood: Not as powerful as last season, but injuries slowed her down.
OH Brittnay Estes, Jr., East Lake: Eagles’ firebrand was third on team in kills, digs, aces.
OH Marisa Moralobo, Jr., Indian Rocks Christian: Among the county leaders in kills, aces and digs.
OH Nikki O’Rourke, Sr., Clearwater: Only an injury could slow the Tornado from making an impact in every match.
MH Brianna McComeskey, Jr., East Lake: Right behind Eschenroeder in kills and blocks, and second in aces as well.
MH Leah McNary, Sr., Palm Harbor University: Creighton-bound standout might be best jumper in the county.
S Rachel Reed, Jr., East Lake: 909 assists and was flawless in the playoffs as she upped her game.
S Kahley Patrick, Sr., Clearwater: Many argued she was the best setter in the county.
MH Marissa Lisenbee, Sr., Seminole
MH Madi Loebel, Jr., Indian Rocks Christian
MH Jennica Mullins, Sr., Northside Christian
OH Jackie Wegner, Jr., East Lake
OH Kalyn Baird, Jr., Clearwater Central Catholic
Lib Christina Berry, Sr., Countryside
S Sara Wright, Sr., Countryside
S Chelsea King, Sr., PHU
Canterbury: Mansie Hough, Megan Burgess
Clearwater: Kelsey Souto, Jennifer Opper, Emma Loucks, Jessica King
Clearwater Central Catholic: Megan Miller, Morgan O’Brien
Countryside: Savannah Stona, Kylee Mooney
East Lake: Brooke Burkett
Indian Rocks Christian: Emiline Lazzeri, Ashley Llerena, Michelle Brown
Keswick Christian: Cassie Foster, Alexa Dietz, Leah Smith
Lakewood: Leigh Buttner
Northeast: Lauren Campbell, Casey Barszcz
Osceola: Katherine Mulroy
Palm Harbor U.: Caitlyn Kovach, Lee Nielsen, Kristine Fuller
Pinellas Park: Andrea Ezell, Mallory Leary
St. Petersburg: Amanda Cook, Zoe Green
Tarpon Springs: Karli Collins
Coach of the year
Terry Small, East Lake
In his final season, Small guided the Eagles to a 29-2 record and the Class 5A state title, the county’s first volleyball championship since 2000. He also won his 300th match during the season.