CHICAGO — In its 31st year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, in collaboration with USA TODAY High School Sports, today announced Raegan LeGrand of Papillion-La Vista South High School as its 2015-16 Gatorade Nebraska Volleyball Player of the Year. LeGrand is the fifth Gatorade Nebraska Volleyball Player of the Year to be chosen from Papillion-La Vista South High School.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes LeGrand as Nebraska’s best high school volleyball player. LeGrand joins an elite alumni association of past state award-winners in 12 sports, including USA Volleyball players Kim Glass (2001-02, Horseshoe HS, Penn.), Kim Willoughby (1998-99, 1999-00, Assumption HS, La.) and Ogonna Nnamani (1999-00, University HS, Ill).
The 5-foot-10 senior outside hitter slammed 485 kills while recording a .426 kill percentage and .311 hitting percentage this past season, leading the Titans (35-7) to the Class A state semifinals. Named the honorary captain of the Lincoln Journal Star’s Super-State squad, LeGrand amassed 700 service receptions, 443 digs, 69 assists, 63 blocks and 25 service aces. A member of the 2014 USA Volleyball Beach High Performance A2 Team and 2013 USA Volleyball Girls’ Youth A2 Invitational Training Team, she was a freshman on Papillion-La Vista South’s 2012 Class A state championship team.
LeGrand has maintained a 4.03 GPA in the classroom. She has volunteered locally as a mentor and tutor for area elementary schoolchildren and with an organization that provides support for low-income families.
“She could walk into any Division I program and have an immediate impact,” said William Root, head coach at rival Grand Island. “Besides being athletic and skilled at the game of volleyball, she outworks everybody on her team. She has great leadership skills.”
LeGrand has signed a National Letter of Intent to play volleyball on scholarship at the University of Southern California in the fall of 2015.
The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade high school sports leadership team in partnership with USA TODAY High School Sports, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.
2015 – Megan Wickey, Omaha Concordia
2014 – Olivia Boender, Waverly
2013 – Amber Rolfzen, Papillion-LaVista South
2012 – Kadie Rolfzen, Papillion-LaVista South
2011 – Amber Rolfzen, Papillion-LaVista South
2010 – Lauren Sieckmann, Omaha Marian
2009 – Gina Mancuso, Papillion-LaVista (Also won National POY)
2008 – Lauren Cook, Lincoln Pius X
2007 – Gabi Ailes, Bellevue West
2006 – Brooke Bartek, Lincoln Northeast
2005 – Jordan Larson, Logan View
2004 – Carolyn Decker, Bellevue West
2003 – Dani Mancuso, Omaha Gross
2002 – Lindsey Hunter, Papillion-LaVista
2001 – Katie Stanzel, Omaha Marian
2000 – Anna Schrad, Lincoln Pius X
1999 – Laura Pilakowski, Columbus
1998 – Jamie Hamm, Bellevue West
1997 – Kim Behrends, Chappel
1996 – Katherine Pettit, Lincoln East