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Eye on POY: North Dakota volleyball

12/9/2011

The window on the Gatorade State Volleyball Player of the Year race is closing, and time is running out for student-athletes to state their POY case. The award recognizes not only athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field. Here are two top candidates who meet the basic award criteria as determined by our ESPNHS team that administers the program’s selection process.

Hadley Steffen

Senior outside hitter, Red River (Grand Forks, N.D.)

2011 Team record: 36-0

2011 Team standing: Won Class A state title

2011 Kills: 438

2011 Blocks: 57

2011 Digs: 282

2011 Aces: 52



Academics:
A-minus average

Collegiate destination: Undecided

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: 2010 and 2011 First Team All-State; 2010 and 2011 First Team All-Conference

Kira Larson

Junior middle blocker, Fargo North (Fargo, N.D.)

2011 Team record: 30-11

2011 Team standing: Lost in Class A semifinals

2011 Kills: 554

2011 Blocks: 123

2011 Digs: 247

2011 Aces: 81

Academics: A average

Collegiate destination: Nebraska (verbally committed)

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: 2011 First Team All-Conference; 2011 First Team All-State

Make no mistake, the Gatorade State Volleyball Player of the Year race isn’t over yet. Time remains for one standout student-athlete among thousands to rise to the top of our list. Here are some more of many who’ve been in the conversation throughout the 2011 campaign.

McKenzie Hart: Langdon (N.D.) senior outside hitter

Keli Johnson: Fargo North (Fargo, N.D.) senior setter/right side hitter

A.J. Jacobs: Century (Bismarck, N.D.) senior outside hitter



Think we're missing a deserving Gatorade State Player of the Year candidate in your state? Let us know via e-mail at ESPNHS_GPOY@ESPN.com or Twitter @ESPNHS_Awards.