Midseason Report: 10 Best Attackers
Photo Credit: Grand Island Independent
We’ve hit the mid-season point for high school volleyball in Nebraska, and with that it’s time to look at who the standouts have been through the first half of the year.
We start by taking a look at the 10 best performances so far by attackers. Keep in mind this isn’t a mid-season all-state team or anything like that. There is still a lot of season left and many, many big matches. This is simply a look at 10 standouts, listed alphabetically, so far this year.
Emily Bressman, 5’10 junior, Omaha Marian
The Creighton recruit may not have the numbers that others on this list do, but the fact is that she is still one of the most feared hitters in the state and the heart-and-soul of the best team in the state. Bressman currently has 191 kills and her 3.9 kills per set is the best of her career. She’s averaged 4.4 kills per set in her last eight matches for 22-1 Marian.
Marriah Buss, 6’0 sophomore, Lincoln Lutheran
Coming into today, no player in the state has more kills than the 299 that Buss has. The sophomore has tallied double-digit kills in 16 of the Warriors’ 19 matches and is averaging 6.5 kills per set. If you don’t get a big block up on Buss she’s basically unstoppable, as her .424 hitting percentage indicates.
Jaden Ferguson, 6’0 junior, Lincoln Southwest
If Ferguson was a stock she would be on everyone’s buy list. A standout in basketball as well, Ferguson was something of a project when she started volleyball and now has become one of the elite volleyball players in the state. As a freshman she averaged 1.5 kills per set and hit .136. She improved last year with averages of 3.3 kills per set while hitting .257. Now, she’s leading one of the state’s best teams with 251 kills (5.3 per set) while hitting .329. And, she’s only going to get better.
Makenna Kirk, 5’6 senior, Lincoln Northeast
Kirk is – by far – the most under appreciated player in the state. She’s a high-riser at just 5’6 with the ability to terminate against anyone. She enters today fourth in the state in kills with 289 while averaging 4.4 kills per set. She’s been the go-to player for the Rockets the past two years as evident by the fact she leads the state with 824 swings.
Lindsay Krause, 6’3 freshman, Skutt Catholic
Skutt Catholic is loaded with players – we all know that. Statistically, Krause may not lead the Skyhawks in kills or be among the top in the state, but let’s just be frank here, Krause is an incredible talent. There is still a lot of room for improvement, but as a freshman the Nebraska recruit has far exceeded what I thought she would bring right away. She plays so high above the net and attacks with such violence it’s scary.
Lexie Langley, 6’0 junior, Archbishop Bergan
Langley has made tremendous strides in her game every year and has become one of the premier attackers in the state for the Class C-2 Knights. A starter since her freshman season, Langley averaged 2.8 kills per set as a freshman, 3.7 as a sophomore and in her junior year she has 247 kills (5.3 per set) and has led Bergan to the #25 spot in the all-class rankings.
Kalynn Meyer, 6’3 sophomore, Superior
It’s pretty scary to think about what Meyer will become as a volleyball player in the coming years and we’re starting to get a glimpse right now. Meyer has a shot at being one of the most complete female high school athletes ever in Nebraska and she could become one of the most dominating faces in volleyball history as well. Just now coming into her own on the volleyball court, Meyer is 8th in the state in kills with 268 and is averaging 5.7 kills per set for 17-3 Superior, a school that has only been to one state tournament in its history.
Fallon Stutheit, 6’1 junior, Johnson-Brock
Think for a moment about all the great high school players in Nebraska history that did not play in Class A. Now, consider that none of them have every had 2,000 or more kills in their career. That’s what makes the fact that Husker walk-on commit Stutheit is on pace for more than 2.000 career kills all the more impressive. As a freshman she had 329 kills (3.4 per set) and then increased that to 539 kills (5.6 per set) as a sophomore and is now sitting at 245 kills (6.3 per set) as a junior. If Stutheit stays healthy she will go down as the most prolific non-Class A attacker in state history.
Megan Woods, 6’0 junior, Grand Island Central Catholic
Woods, an Omaha recruit, is just a straight baller. She plays much bigger than 5’10 and brings a warrior’s mentality to the court for Grand Island CC. A starter since her freshman year, she has upped her game this year and is hitting .438 with 221 kills (5.4 per set). Some of the best players in the state are in the Centennial Conference and Woods ranks right with the best.
Jaela Zimmerman, 6’2 senior, Malcolm
What more is there to say about the Creighton recruit that hasn’t already been said. She will likely be – and deserves to be – the Gatorade Player of the Year and epitomizes everything you want in a high school volleyball player. She’s hitting .539 on the season and has 285 kills (6.5 per set). Zimmerman has reached double-digit kill totals in 18 of 19 matches this year and in 50 of Malcolm’s last 54 matches.