ORLANDO, FL – A total of 37 club volleyball teams from Nebraska begin the quest for an AAU National Championship beginning Tuesday in Orlando at ESPN Wide World of Sports at Disney World and the Orange County Convention Center.
The AAU National Championships are divided into four divisions within each age group, with Open being the most difficult division, followed by Premier, Club and Classic. Of the 37 Nebraska teams, nine are playing in the Open Division to compete for a true national championship.
Nebraska Elite 161 Vici may well represent Nebraska’s best chance for a national champion in Orlando. The team is playing well as of late and was seeded accordingly, earning the #13 overall seed out of 67 teams competing. At the Mizuno Pre-Nationals in Chicago earlier this month, Nebraska Elite 161 Vici tied for 3rd place in the 16 Open division.
The 16 Open division does not get started until next Tuesday – June 23 – but Nebraska Elite 161 Vici will have its hands full with the other top team in its opening-day pool – Milwaukee Sting 16 Gold – the #22 overall seed. Also in the opening-day pool for Nebraska Elite 16 Elite is Illini Elite 16 Cardinal and Starlings Monrovia from Los Angeles.
Milwaukee Sting 16 Gold features 6-foot outside hitter Lexi Alden, who is committed to Maryland, and also 6-foot-1 middle Ivey Whalen, who is considered one of the top middles in the Midwest for the Class of 2017.
Nebraska’s other top hope for a run at a national title in Orlando likely sits with Nebraska Juniors 181 Black in the 18 Open division. Competition gets underway this Tuesday – June 16 – in the 18s division and Nebraska Juniors 181 Black will face a huge test early.
In a 1 p.m. match (EST), Nebraska Juniors will take on Minnesota Select 181 – the #2 overall seed in the tournament and the #5 ranked team in the nation, according to PrepVolleyball.com. Minnesota Select has plenty of talent, including 6-foot-3 right side Hannah Bailey, who is headed to Iowa State, and 6-foot-1 middle Jaila Tolbert, who will play next year at Virginia Tech. Perhaps the most intriguing player for Minnesota Select is Class of 2017 6-foot setter Sydney Hilley, who is pledged to Wisconsin.
Along with Nebraska Juniors 181 Black and Minnesota Select 181, Houston Juniors 18 Elite and Balance 18 Elite of Chicago are in the same opening-day pool.
In the 17 Open division, Nebraska Juniors 171 Black is seeded 16th out of 60 while Nebraska Elite 17 SWAT is seeded 22nd. Along with Nebraska Elite 161 Vici in the 16 Open, Nebraska Juniors 161 Black is seeded 53rd out of 67 and in 15 Open, Nebraska Elite 151 Revolution is seeded 25th out of 50 while Nebraska Juniors 151 Black is seeded 39th.
In the 14 Open division, Nebraska Elite 14 Havoc is seeded 15th out of 32 teams and Nebraska Elite 12 Velocity is seeded 17th out of 26 teams in 12 Open.
Below is a full list of teams competing in Orlando. Rosters are not the official national championship roster but rather the most recent available roster for each team.
Team: Nebraska Juniors 181
Seed: 19 out of 39
Roster: Sarah Allick, Tarrin Beller, Sara Boothe, Taylor Els, Kelsey Green, Jamie Hauptman, Kylie Hohlen, Raegan LeGrand, Carley Remmers, Meagen Roth, Brittany Witt, Kylee Wurster. Head coach: Gwen Egbert.
Team: River City Juniors 181
Seed: 6 out of 51
Roster: Taylor Frederick, Gessica Gdowski, Sage Meyer, Courtney Morehead, Matti Munger, Lauren Salerno, Jess Schaben, Molly Schiermeyer, Tiffany Wentworth, Megan Wickey. Head coach: Deb Grafentin.
Team: Nebraska Elite 18 Freak Show
Seed: 9 out of 51
Roster: Maddy Bruder, Reghan Coyle, Kayli Grant, Monica Hruby, Ashley Knight, Claire Knust, Kira Shapiro, Katie Stephens, Olivia Wolodkewitsch. Head coach: Nick Schuster.
Team: Nebraska Juniors 182
Seed: 30 out of 51
Roster: Ashten Arkfeld, Taylor Doremus, Lexie Duch, Kelli Holloway, Anna Holmquist, Sydney Parr, Allison Penner, Payton Ruhl, Paxton Throne, Erin Warren, Lindsey Wisnieski. Head coach: Ryan Gray.
Team: River City Juniors 182
Seed: 30 out of 60
Roster: Kristen Weigum, McKenzi Bay, Assarar Gony, Anna Gottsch, Victoria Leffler, Emily Lines, Nicole Lofshult, Emma Pink, Emeille Price, Maggie Timmerman, Autumn Wood. Head coach: Lindsey Peterson.
Team: 5-Star VBC
Seed: 44 out of 60
Roster: No roster available at this time.
Team: VCNebraska 18 Elite
Seed: 29 out of 58
Roster: Taylor Drake, Molly Engebreston, Brooke McCallum, Taylor Petersen, Kylie Roe, Lizzie Saale, Jama Scheierman, Jasa Scheierman, Kinzie Vandewege. Head coach: Bryce Hickerson.
Team: Nebraska Juniors 171
Seed: 16 out of 60
Roster: Callie Alberico, Brianna Boender, Ellie Brown, Lauren Hinrichs, Kiley Hixson, Cassidy Loberg, Elizabeth Loschen, Sophia Terwilleger, Amanda Young. Head coach: Jake Moore.
Team: Nebraska Elite 17 SWAT
Seed: 22 out of 60
Roster: Katie Belford, Olivia Bures, Elise Duryea, Madison Goltl, Madeline Knobbe, Halie McArdle, Maren McGuire, Payton Rosendahl, Kate Ruffalo, Jaden Thiem, Katie Zheng. Head coach: Andrew Wehrli.
Team: Nebraska ONE 17 Crossfire
Seed: 23 out of 96
Roster: Jordyn Clauss, Jenna Dolezal, Courtney Faller, Elizabeth Gifford, Carlie Jaeger, Emily Lenners, Julia Pomerenke, Ashlyn Power, Payton Robley, Greta Solomon. Head coach: Kelli Thoms.
Team: Nebraska Juniors 172
Seed: 44 out of 96
Roster: Kara Bown, Alexis Bryant, Kelsey Daberkow, Samantha Duncan, Brenna Hansen, Fiona Harding, Nerissa Moravec, Katie Schultis, Kia Scott, Addison Sellon. Head coach: Alyssa LeGrand.
Team: River City Juniors 171
Seed: 37 out of 118
Roster: Sophie Auch Moedy, Kelsey Beaudin, Maddie Cunningham, Hannah Dubas, Jessica DuVal, Brittany Fleming, Caitlin Kelley, Mallory Matthies, Cassidy Renander, Alexy Woodward, Aya Zacharias. Head coach: Rick Hughes.
Team: River City Juniors 172
Seed: 98 out of 118
Roster: Wes Ahl, Amber Argo, Kyra Hudson, Christina Jerauld, Claire Kilborn, Anne-Marie Kwasnieski, Myah Morrissey, Tiara Prince. Head coach: Katie Wright.
Team: Nebraska Elite 16 Vici
Seed: 13 out of 67
Roster: Jordan Daniels, Brooklyn Duren, Lily Heim, Brooke Heyne, Kathleen Medill, Grace Nelson, Jessica Schlautman, Allison Schomers, Madison Stearns, Sarah Swanson. Head coach: Tony Carrow.
Team: Nebraska Juniors 161
Seed: 53 out of 67
Roster: Brooke Fredrickson, Maddie Grendahl, Madison Jurgens, Callahan Netsch, Makenna Niemoth, Carson Opfer, Jaisa Russell, Cameron Scott, Mary Katherine Wolfe, Mallory Yost. Head coach: Mike Brandon.
Team: Nebraska Juniors 162
Seed: 91 out of 102
Roster: Bayley Brake, Emily Champion, Calla Harding-McDermott, Karlie Kohn, Lauren Leapley, Alaetra Long, Jordyne Miles, Allison Nixon, Kiley Tremel, Jacee Weber, Karly Wieser. Head coach: Jean Hern.
Team: Nebraska ONE 16 Heat
Seed: 36 out of 159
Roster: Marissa Bockmann, Miranda Brohman, Kate Dean, Ashton Emmett, Kayleigh Hulewicz, Liliana Johnson, Liesl Miller, Tyra Mollhoff, Alexa Mustard, Emma Nelson. Head coach: Alexa Birkel.
Team: River City Juniors 161
Seed: 38 out of 159
Roster: Mollee Adamson, Lauen Bair, Courtney Cameron, Cera Craven, Alli DeVries, Cheyanne French, Kori Lester, Madison Lihs, Cheyenne Mahnke, Morgan Micek, Nichole Seagle. Head coach: Krista Barr.
Team: River City Juniors 162
Seed: 83 out of 159
Roster: Emily Bohn, Hannah Boone, Georgia Chambers, Maggie Durbin, Maria Gallegos, Katie Kaipust, Madisson Magee, Jada Perkins, Carlee Simonson, Samantha Simpson, Taylor Tokos. Head coach: Michelle Pettit.
Team: VCNebraska 16 Elite
Seed: 141 out of 159
Roster: Hayley Densberger, Megan Dobbs, Amber Legrande, Abbey Maul, Abigail Noel, Aspen Rolfes, Jaiden Sila, Kelsey Smith, Reagan Tekolste, Emma Thomssen. Coaches: Justine Wong-Orantes, Dan Mader.
Team: Nebraska Elite 16 Pursuit
Seed: 142 out of 152
Roster: Christina Combs, Alexi Crouch, Haley Hans, Hannah Henry, Emily Kubica, Emma Lentsch, Marissa Newman, Jordan Rivard, Abigail Trapp, Taylor Ulrich, Meredith Zielie. Head coach: Kael Busing.
Team: Nebraska Elite 15 Revolution
Seed: 25 out of 50
Roster: Kate Bilyeu, Emily Bressman, Sydney Daniels, Lauren Edet, Emma Egger, Julianna Kalil, Halle Meister, Maggie Mullen, Kennedy Stormberg, Madelynn Wiedenfeld, Sarah Wing. Head coach: Andrew Wehrli.
Team: Nebraska Juniors 151
Seed: 39 out of 50
Roster: Taya Beller, Grace Hern, Mara LeGrand, Alex Lemke, Brynna Lewis, Kristin Lux, Jordan McCormick, Alex Montoya, Lindsay Nottleman, Elle Olson, Corrie Schneider, Kaitlynn Simon. Head coach: Jessica Fauss.
Team: VCNebraska 15 Elite
Seed: 28 out of 164
Roster: Michaela Boon, Alyssa Childers, Erika Dawn Cook, Adison Kerchal, Riley Newton, Tanner Ohlson, Eran Rose-Gronewold, Christiana Thacker, Rachel Walker, Jaela Zimmerman. Head coach: Annika Albrecht.
Team: VCNebraska 15 Black
Seed: 94 out of 164
Roster: Kayla Dodson, Alexa Easley, Gracey England, Emma Ryan, MacKenzie Sempeck, Maggie Sempeck, Megan Snyder, Claire Streeter, Grace Volk. Head coach: Dan Mader.
Team: River City Juniors 151
Seed: 116 out of 164
Roster: Elizabeth Greunke, Megan Hicks, Sara Kmiecik, Haley Leinen, Elaina Lundquist, Olivia Petersen, Reaghan Stueve, Sidney Therkelsen, Kayli White, Katherine Worden. Head coach: Jeff Riddle.
Team: Nebraska Elite 14 Havoc
Seed: 15 out of 32
Roster: Madelyn Burt, Emmy Grant, Emma Grunkemeyer, Lily Heyne, Paige Holdsworth, Riley Miller, Sophia Moes, Mackenze Saitta, Baylie Shearer, Emma Worthington. Head coach: Steve Bymers.
Team: Nebraska ONE 14 Titanium
Seed: 9 out of 67
Roster: Ashley Beckman, Marriah Buss, Atley Carey, Isabella Frager, Hope Leimbach, Paige Silverberg, Fallon Stutheit, Lauren Taubenheim, Alexis Thavenet, Mariah Zvolanek. Head coach: Rachel Culwell.
Team: Nebraska Elite 14 Nexus
Seed: 28 out of 133
Roster: Logan Connealy, Kylie Emsick, Lydia Hogan, Lexie Langley, Maggie McElhose, Lily O’Mara, Taylor Pribyl, Megan Raszler, Mallory Stamm, Kamryn Willman. Head coach: Lindsay Hansen.
Team: Nebraska ONE 14 Platinum
Seed: 110 out of 133
Roster: Evie Barnett, Brianna Belt, Sierra Beukelman, Ashlynn Dodd, Courtnay Hagedorn, Anna McLain, Molly Olson, Barrett Power, Kailee Runge, Rylee Schurman. Head coach: Karissa Heun.
Team: River City Juniors 141
Seed: 117 out of 133
Roster: Morgan Lihs, Mary Martincek, Jenna Mitchell, Peyton Mull, Lexi Proskovec, Brook Ringsdorf, Hannah Smith, Samantha Steele, Hannah Zebert. Head coach: Lindsey Diederich.
Team: Nebraska Elite 13 Thunder
Seed: 39 out of 102
Roster: Emily Bay, Mayah Delgado, Eve Fountain, Skylar Hunter, Tatum Livingston, Madison Murcek, Kaitlin Neely, Caroline Ortman, Mandy Rye, Grace Schiemann. Head coach: Angie Lantz.
Team: River City Juniors 131
Seed: 58 out of 102
Roster: Olivia Barnes, Alyssa Bizzari, Jordyn Blaha, Alexa Blaine, Elise Gilroy, Abby McGargill, Lucky Murrell, Grace Phillips, Grace Safar, Veronica Svajgl. Head coach: Mary Beth Steele.
Team: Nebraska Elite 13 Storm
Seed: 21 out of 80
Roster: Catherine Begley, Kiersten Capelle, Sarah Cronin, Maureen Flanery, Emily Kaup, Katie Kilzer, Lucy O’Brien, Meghan Pellett, Molly Plahn, Lauren Walenz. Head coach: Deryck Anderson.
Team: Nebraska Elite 12 Velocity
Seed: 17 out of 26
Roster: Amanda Allbery, Ella Bellinghausen, Kaylie Briggs, Allison Gray, Rylee Gray, Molly Jenkin, Ellie Miller, Allison Petry, Kylie Weeks, Bailey Zielie. Head coach: Kim Bymers.
Team: River City Juniors 121
Seed: 50 out of 61
Roster: Lulu Ahl, Ava Cunningham, Caitlyn Erland, Macy Gould, Haley Grim, Anna Paulus, Mallory Sullivan, Kendyl Wenninghoff, Grace Williams. Head coach: Jenna Sosnowchik.
Team: Nebraska Elite 12 Unify
Seed: 37 out of 48
Roster: Emma Ehrhardt, Megan Erspamer, Liza Heim, Olivia Hojnicki, Laura Hyde, Quinn Mantell, Avery Marquis, Celia Paulsen, Alexa Richter, Lyndsey Veach, Zielie Mattighan. Head coach: Thomas Robertson.