Volleyball is a fast-growing sport, both among spectators and players. Volleyball players are training and competing year round as many of the girls who play it in the fall continue training for club and travel teams in the winter and spring, and then leagues, camps and showcases in the summer.
That commitment to the sport is shown by the Valley’s teams when they compete across the state in preseason tournaments and then the playoffs.
Below are the nominees for the All-Valley Volleyball Player of the Year. Winners will be announced June 13 at the All Valley Sports Awards Banquet, co-presented by Lone Star National Bank and DHR Health. Nominees are listed in alphabetical order.
Jackie Alanis, McAllen Rowe, senior. The back-to-back Monitor Player of the Year is fierce. Getting in front of her spike often spells bad news, mainly because in her four seasons Alanis has learned how to hit around, over or through the blocks with experience – and a whole lot of power. She recorded 890 kills and carried the load on offense for the Warriors. She will continue her volleyball career at Nicholls State in Thibodaux, Louisiana.
Jocelyn Everage, McAllen Memorial, senior. If there was an award out there, Jocelyn’s skills both on and off the court usually made her a candidate. She was the district 30-6A MVP; led the team to a Sweet 16 appearance and was named to the Texas Girls Coaches Association Class 6A All-State Volleyball Team (the only all-stater from the Valley). Jocelyn amassed 1,300-plus career kills and as a senior tallied 533 kills, 63 blocks, 30 aces and a high .377 hitting percentage. She led the Mustangs to 40-4 record, 14-0 in district. She played a large role in the Mustrange winning four straight district titles.
Jackie Howell, Mission Veterans, senior. Four years, four district titles – four undefeated district seasons. The senior district MVP recorded 728 kills to eclipse 1,000 in her career. Her hitting percentage was at a staggering .499 and she was a big reason the team was ranked in the top five in Class 5A in the state.
The banquet, hosted by RGVSports.com and AIM Media Texas in conjunction with the RGV Sports Hall of Fame, will see 33 awards presented to athletes, coaches and teams across all 12 UIL sports. The prestigious Tom Landry Award of Excellence will honor a student athlete for outstanding achievements.
Dallas Cowboys great Randy White, a Super Bowl MVP and NFL Hall of Famer, will be the guest speaker.
The banquet, which will run approximately 6 to 8 p.m., returns to Mario’s for a second consecutive year. The venue has a seating capacity of more than 500 people.
Tickets will be on sale soon at a cost of $40 per person. For sponsorship opportunities, call Marcia Kitten at (956) 683-4463 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.