The Northwest Suburbs' Girls Volleyball All-Area Team
Rian Baker FremdBaker made a terrific comeback from a knee issue to start the season and became one of the finest setters in the area. "While she was out, she could be seen getting setting touches on the wall and encouraging her teammates," said Fremd coach Curt Pinley. "She showed her team that when she would be back, they could rely on her and she would be ready, and ready she was." The sophomore setter led the Vikes with 557 assists and showed her skills in the front row where she had 69 kills. "The best part about Rian is she is one of the most genuine players I have ever coached," Pinley added.
Janine Boyan Hersey The Huskies' starting middle for the past three years, Boyan is one of the top all-around athletes at Hersey. The three-sporter placed downstate in the discus last spring. "She brought that athleticism to the volleyball court with her strong swings and intimidating blocks," said Hersey coach Nancy Lill of the current school record holder in block kills in a match. This season, she put down 136 kills with a .302 hitting efficiency and 84 block kills.
Grace Cacini ProspectCacini made her mark in a big way for the Prospect program this fall, becoming the school's all-time leader for kills with 673. The senior outside hitter surpassed the former record held by Sarah Hunt set in 2010. "Grace brings such intensity and drive to our team," said Knights coach Laura Gerber of the school's leading attacker the last three seasons. "I will miss her excitement for the game." For her career, Cacini also had 72 block kills, 62 aces and 534 digs.
Emily Campe Palatine Without a doubt one of the most physically dominating offensive players in the area, Campe led the Pirates with 352 kills (4.19 per set) while also collecting 172 digs, 52 aces and 46 blocks. "She is that player who everyone in the gym knows is getting the ball but she still manages to terminate the play," said Palatine coach Dan Gavin of the senior outside hitter. "She's worked diligently to become more well-rounded and find ways to impact matches defensively and with her serve. There's no doubt in my mind she's going to go on to great things at Virginia Tech."
Shannon Coglianese Buffalo GroveFor the past two seasons, Coglianese has been one of the best offensive weapons coach Matt Priban has put on the floor. The junior outside hitter has accumulated 233 kills, a 0.228 hitting efficiency and 30 blocks. "Shannon's strong swing on the outside, competitive nature, and leadership on the court have played a large role in our team's success," Priban said. "Shannon is always ready to go on game day. Her drive and enthusiasm have helped her to improve throughout the season."
Amanda Cleary BarringtonOnly a sophomore, Cleary switched positions this fall and did it with the ease of a veteran. Cleary collected 348 digs and also showed her prowess at the service line where she connected for 44 aces. "Amanda is the heart and soul of our team," said Fillies coach Michelle Jakubowski. "Her passion and love for the game shows in every play. She took on a new role and moved from being an outside hitter to the starting libero. She embraced her new position and has become one of the top liberos in our conference."
Jocelynn Escamila Leyden Escamila, a senior setter, handed out the assists for Leyden the past two seasons but she has meant much more to coach Danielle Kowalkowski's Eagles. "Jocelyn has made a huge impact on this program and will leave a big hole to fill next season," Kowalkowski said. "Not only has she assisted just about every kill this season (452), she also has a great serve (41 aces) and is an offensive threat (96 kills) as well. She gets to balls I haven't seen a setter get to in years. She is extremely quick on the court, plays excellent defense and makes the right offensive decisions."
Kaiya Eshoo Hersey A two-year starter, Eshoo was instrumental in running the explosive Hersey offense. She finished Hersey's 29-9 season with 707 assists from 1,667 attempts. She also dominated matches from the service line with 44 aces while serving 95 percent. She was very effective at the net with 74 kills and 24 blocks and contributed 170 digs this season. "Kaiya has been a great floor leader for our team the past two years," said Hersey coach Nancy Lill of the two-time all-area setter. "She is quick and athletic and has done an outstanding job as our setter."
Yuri Hara ConantHara's versatility was a key to the Cougars' success this fall. The junior outside hitter put down 186 kills with 243 digs and 61 aces in 35 matches. "Yuri is a phenomenal volleyball player both offensively and defensively," said Conant coach Drewann Pancratz. "Her vision on the court and knowledge of the game is above and beyond any athlete I've had the privilege to coach." Pancratz stressed Hara's leadership and passion for the game. "It never goes unseen," Pancratz said. "She has been the driving force for the success of this program the last four years. She will truly be missed and we wish her the best of luck as she returns home to Japan this year."
Kati Kaburov Hersey Coaches in the MSL East can finally breathe a sigh of relief. Kaburov's dominating play in the conference has come to an end after a record-setting career. The four-year starting outside hitter smashed Hersey great Megan Fesl's career kill record this season with 1,381 kills. This season she was dominant from everywhere on the court, compiling 401 kills with an amazing .327 hitting efficiency. "Katie left her mark here at Hersey and will go down as one of the top players in Hersey volleyball history," said Huskies coach Nancy Lill of the four-time all-area selection.
Kelly Keelin Maine South When energy was needed for the Hawks, Keelin was always there to provide both with her attitude and explosiveness on the court. The outside hitter and senior captain put down 144 kills with 313 digs and 25 aces. "Keelin kept the team energized with her positive attitude at all times," said Maine South coach Kathleen Durkin. "She hits the floor for every ball and never gives up on a play. She never left the court all season as she was the most well-rounded player on the team. Keelin can jump out of the gym as she has an amazing vertical jump. So when she connects on a ball, it is exciting to watch."
Chris Kotsifas Maine East Maine East coach Rintu Philip got to coach one of the finest athletes to play at Maine East. "She was definitely one of the greatest athletes that walked into Maine East," Philip said. "It was an honor to watch her hard work turn into success." Kotsifas led the Blue Demons with 240 kills and 147 digs this fall. "Chris is a student-athlete that every coach looks forward to when the season starts," Philip added. "She excelled in her academics as much as on the volleyball court. Her dedication to school and sport did not go unnoticed. Seeing her grow from a girl to the woman she is today has been a privilege and I hope she continues to keep her work ethic in everything that she does."
Megan Mitsunaga Buffalo GroveGoing from a defensive specialist on the 2018 Mid-Suburban co-championship team to a six-rotation outside hitter this fall, Mitsunaga enjoyed a stellar junior season. "Megan's hard work and dedication to the sport have helped her take huge steps this year as a junior," said Bison coach Matt Priban, who watched Mitsunaga contribute 229 kills (0.171 hitting efficiency), 20 aces and 208 digs this fall. "She is one of the more vocal players on the court, constantly encouraging her teammates and leading by example."
Ashley Poland Hoffman EstatesPoland capped off her outstanding four-year career with another stellar season as she led the Hawks with 398 digs and also served 33 aces. The four-time Mid-Suburban League all-conference pick finished with more than 1,500 digs in her career. "Ashley was always a leader on and off the floor and her leadership will be greatly missed next year," said Hawks coach Pat Moran. Poland will take her back row skills to Macomb where she will play Division I volleyball for the Western Illinois Leathernecks.
Breslen Reid FremdAlways full of energy, Breslen Reid was second on the team to her sister Rylen in kills with 272. She also had 224 digs and was a fixture defensively. "Breslen is our high octane," said Fremd coach Curt Pinley. "She is that athlete that will light the fire, keep it burning and will make sure that the opposition feels the heat. Throughout her time in the program, she was that athlete who could make others around her reach the next level when she brought her intensity. She thrived when she got a great dig. Her persona is the catalyst that gave our team success."
Rylen Reid FremdTeams tried to figure out how to stop the Mid-Suburban West Player of the Year all season. "But the only thing they could maybe do is slow her down," said Vikings coach Curt Pinley. "She has the green light all the time." Reid led lead the Vikings with 422 kills and was one of the team leaders in aces (40) and digs (226 digs). "Her carefree attitude on the floor has helped others realize that playing volleyball is truly fun," Pinley added. "Sounds simple but few do it with her style."
Izzy Segoviano FremdSegoviano ruled the back row for the Vikings. As a first-year varsity athlete, the sophomore libero stepped into her role with a veteran flair. She led the team with 332 digs and was the leader in serve/receive with 340 attempts. Segoviano was also clutch at the serving line (second best on the team with 43 aces). "She is that athlete who is always laser focused and highly coachable," said Fremd coach Curt Pinley. "A phrase that would describe her on the floor, whether in practice or a match, is intensity."
Sarah Skaggs ProspectSkaggs was the motor that ran a Prospect attack that included the school's all-time kills leader (Grace Cacini). Skaggs finished her three-year career with 1,373 assists, 575 digs and 45 aces to rank among the finest setters in program history. "Sarah has been a great leader for the last three years on our varsity," said Prospect coach Laura Gerber. "She is one of the stronger setters Prospect has had and she will be missed. Sarah has a great positive attitude and ran the floor really well."
Juliette van den Herik HerseyAn often dominating force at the net, van den Herik has been a fixture as Hersey's starting middle the past three seasons. Her blocking is relentless, and has created plenty of havoc for hitters across the net. Her speed and pursuit at the net is outstanding. She had 70 block kills and hammered 134 kills with an incredible .502 hitting efficiency. "Juliette has taken the next step with her hitting as well," said Hersey coach Nancy Lill. "She will be taking her game to the next level next fall as she will compete for Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (Prescott, AZ)."