My first top ten ranking of the 2022 high school season had the top four teams as Flint Hill, Langley, Bishop O’Connell and Colgan. James Wood, the 4A champions was number 10. Alexandria City could only get a mention on…
My first top ten ranking of the 2022 high school season had the top four teams as Flint Hill, Langley, Bishop O’Connell and Colgan. James Wood, the 4A champions was number 10. Alexandria City could only get a mention on the others to be considered.
This gang of four remained atop the top ten throughout the season, with Flint Hill always on top and the others jostling for the two to four spots. Alexandria City now has nestled a spot into the gang of four, with James Wood rising to number six to make it a super six. Below is my final top ten rankings for the Northern Virginia high schools.
Flint Hill (36-0) – They only lost one set this year, their final match in the State championship to Norfolk Academy. They swept Colgan during the regular season and finished as the 20th ranked team in the country according to USA today. It could be more of the same next year. The two key starters graduating are middle Sonja Meyer Sonja Meyer 5'10" | MB Flint Hill | 2023 State VA and outside Sydney Bryant Sydney Bryant 5'7" | S Flint Hill | 2026 State VA . Junior Sarah Manson Sarah Manson 5'10" | MB Flint Hill | 2024 State VA could replace Sonja in the middle and sophomore Audrey Sealock could replace Sydney on the outside. Key returners are Ryla Jones Ryla Jones 6'4" | MB Flint Hill | 2024 State #93 Nation VA and Renee Jones Renee Jones 6'5" | RS Flint Hill | 2024 State VA , who fill the right side and middle roles, setters Natalie Nguyen Natalie Nguyen 5'5" | S Flint Hill | 2024 State VA and Isabelle Bardin Isabelle Bardin 6'2" | S Flint Hill | 2025 State VA , outside Mickhaila Murray Mickhaila Murray 5'11" | OH Flint Hill | 2024 State VA and libero Evie Huang Evie Huang 5'6" | DS/L Flint Hill | 2026 State VA . After 2023 they will lose the Jones twins, Murray and Nguyen.
Alexandria City (36-2) – Their only two losses were to Robinson when the team was still green and trying to find themselves. They won 14 straight matches after their second loss to Robinson, including two wins over Robinson. Next year will be key as they lose Chloe Wilmot Chloe Wilmot 5'9" | S Alexandria City | 2023 State VA and Milan Rex Milan Rex 5'11" | S Alexandria City | 2023 State #147 Nation VA , the only two players left from their first championship season of 2020. They will also be without a key middle in Annalie McCarthy Annalie McCarthy 6'0" | MB Alexandria | 2023 State VA . Key returners for them next year will be outside Bridie Wendling Bridie Wendling 5'10" | OH Alexandria City | 2024 State VA , middle Harper Travis Harper Travis 5'11" | MB Alexandria City | 2024 State VA and libero Zana Royster Zana Royster 5'6" | DS/L Alexandria City | 2025 State VA . They did add frosh Alicia Randall to the varsity squad during their playoff drive and she is listed as a setter, a position they currently do not have on their varsity roster after the departures of Wilmot and Rex.
Bishop O’Connell (29-2) – Last year they were the only team to beat Flint Hill, losing to them three times as well. They were not on their schedule this year, the hope being they would face them in the finals for the State championship. Norfolk Academy put a kibosh to that plan. They should be strong next year. Their only departing senior is Grace Maria Grace Maria 6'2" | OH Bishop O'Connell | 2023 State #150 Nation VA . They have three key players returning in middle Madison Bowser Madison Bowser 6'2" | MB Bishop O'Connell | 2024 State VA , Teodora Stamenkovic Teodora Stamenkovic 6'1" | MB Bishop O'Connell | 2026 State VA and Erin Debiec Erin Debiec 6'1" | S Bishop O'Connell | 2024 State #85 Nation VA as well as a trio of back row players in , Cara Nearpass Cara Nearpass 5'8" | DS/L Bishop O'Connell | 2024 State VA and Maia Cerezo Maia Cerezo 5'2" | DS/L Bishop O'Connell | 2025 State VA . Outsides Payton Vieselmeyer Payton Vieselmeyer 5'8" | OH Bishop O'Connell | 2025 State VA and Grace Faughnan Grace Faughnan 6'0" | RS Bishop O'Connell | 2024 VA as well as setter Emily Reyburn Emily Reyburn 5'8" | S Bishop O'Connell | 2024 State VA also hope to enhance their game to make a greater contribution in 2023.
Colgan (31-3) – The defending champs fell just two points short of making it back to back. Three key players they will need to replace are middles Brielle Kemavor Brielle Kemavor 6'5" | MB Charles J. Colgan | 2023 State #148 Nation VA and Grace Smith Grace Smith 6'0" | MB Colgan | 2023 State VA and setter Alexis Scipione Alexis Scipione 5'9" | S Colgan | 2023 State VA . Also departing will be defensive specialist Mil’lani Marte and outside Kezia Francis Kezia Francis 5'9" | OH Charles Colgan | 2023 State VA . They do have some first teamers returning in outside Aubrey Hatch Aubrey Hatch 6'1" | OH Colgan | 2024 State VA and libero Paula Sigurani Paula Sigurani 5'5" | DS/L Colgan | 2024 State VA . Skylar Johnson Skylar Johnson 5'8" | RS Colgan | 2025 VA and frosh Tehillah Garrison Tehillah Garrison 5'8" | OH Colgan | 2026 State VA hope to play more important roles. The setting role could be turned over to juniors Maddison Bowman or Skylar Medina.
Langley (23-3) – They were a young team that looked like they were peaking at the right time. Losses to Chantilly and eventual champion Alexandria City crashed their championship hopes. They lose their libero Erica Maebius Erica Maebius 5'3" | DS/L Langley | 2023 State VA and outside Sophia Galova Sophia Galova 5'10" | OH Langley | 2023 State VA , their two captains. The players they bring back should give them another championship run. Setters Chloe Hokenson Chloe Hokenson 6'1" | S Langley | 2024 State VA and Claire Mo Claire Mo 5'9" | S Langley | 2026 State VA return as well as middle/outsides Leni Stanton-Parker Leni Stanton-Parker 6'0" | MB Langley | 2025 State VA , Riley Buddie Riley Buddie 6'1" | OH Langley | 2024 State VA and Ana Toumazatos Ana Toumazatos 6'0" | OH Langley | 2025 State VA . Amber Smith could be the favorite to take over the libero role.
James Wood (26-1) – The Colonels won their first State Championship after appearing in seven final fours, the last being in 2016. With their returning players they could win the next three State Championships. Their two big losses will be libero Carsyn Vincent Carsyn Vincent 5'1" | DS/L James Wood | 2023 State VA and middle Ella Kelchner Ella Kelchner 5'8" | MB James Wood | 2023 State VA . Their two superstar frosh Kennedy Spaid Kennedy Spaid 5'11" | OH James Wood | 2026 State VA and Brenna Corbin Brenna Corbin 5'5" | DS/L James Wood | 2026 State VA will be returning. Brenna did well hitting outside, but her natural position is libero, a position she may return to after the Vincent graduation. Their two setter combos Paige Ahakuelo Paige Ahakuelo 5'7" | S James Wood | 2024 State VA and Hannah McCullough Hannah McCullough 5'2" | S James Wood | 2024 State VA will be back for one more season. So will key contributors middle Lexi Taylor Lexi Taylor 5'6" | MB James Wood | 2024 State VA and outside Ashlynn Spence Ashlynn Spence 5'8" | MB James Wood | 2024 State VA , who could move over to play the other middle.
Battlefield (17-4) – I thought they had the potential to get to the State finals, but they were upset by Forest Park in the Regionals, losing the fifth game 16-14. This will be a very strong roster for next year. The two seniors they lost were Emily Dunn Emily Dunn 5'9" | OH Battlefield | 2023 VA and Sofia Miller but they return most of their key contributors from this year. That includes setters Melorra Arthur Melorra Arthur S Battlefield | 2024 State VA and Aava Shingler Aava Shingler S Battlefield | 2024 State VA , outsides Skyler Tennant Skyler Tennant 5'11" | RS Battlefield | 2025 State VA , Grace Bianchi Grace Bianchi 5'7" | OH Battlefield | 2024 State VA and Taelin Connolley Taelin Connolley 5'6" | OH Battlefield | 2024 State VA , middle Brianna Clay Brianna Clay 6'2" | MB Battlefield | 2024 State VA and libero Jaelle Savannah Hinkle Jaelle Savannah Hinkle DS/L Battlefield | 2024 State VA . The only sophomore among this group is Skyler, the rest are juniors. The 2023 high school season could be a big one for the Bobcats.
Riverside (16-6) – They lost to eventual Class 5 State champs Midlothian in the first round of the State brackets. They were the only Northern Virginia team to make it to the States in Class 5. Their big losses are their two setters Ava Ray Ava Ray 5'7" | S Riverside | 2023 State VA and Sage Duggal Sage Duggal 5'5" | S Riverside | 2023 State VA . If they can find one or two new setters there is plenty of offense on this team, including player of the year middle Simone Schaefer Simone Schaefer 5'10" | MB Riverside | 2025 State VA and outside Brianna Holladay Brianna Holladay 6'1" | MB Riverside | 2025 State VA , both sophomores. Libero Natalie Carlin Natalie Carlin 5'5" | DS/L Riverside | 2024 State VA , outside Adriana Perodin Adriana Perodin 5'8" | OH Riverside | 2025 VA and middle Samantha Ferguson Samantha Ferguson 5'10" | MB Riverside | 2024 State VA are the three juniors that will be returning.
Dominion (19-8) – This is a team that seemed to find a groove near the end of the season. They finally lost to James Wood in the semifinals of class four. The big loss for this team would be their libero Haley Gill Haley Gill 5'7" | DS/L Dominion | 2023 State #197 Nation VA , who was number two in Virginia in digs. Also graduating will be outside Kennedy Seekford Kennedy Seekford 5'5" | DS/L Dominion | 2023 State VA and middle Maya Van Wyngaardt Maya Van Wyngaardt 6'1" | MB Dominion | 2023 State VA . They could have a loaded lineup with sophomore setters Juliet Correll Juliet Correll S Dominion | 2025 State VA and Emma Adiacontei Emma Adiacontei S Dominion | 2025 State VA returning, as well as middle Abigail Vasak Abigail Vasak MB Dominion | 2025 State VA and outside Kaitlyn Demitz Kaitlyn Demitz RS Dominion | 2025 State VA .
Chantilly (14-7) – Any team that has Lameen Mambu Lameen Mambu 6'0" | OH Chantilly | 2025 State VA on their roster can beat anyone. The Chargers got to the semi-finals, only to lose to Alexandria City in four. They upset Langley to earn a spot in the State championship game. Before losing to the Titans they had accomplished a six game winning streak. They will lose setter Jaylin Price Jaylin Price 5'2" | S Chantilly | 2023 State VA plus outsides Samantha Hollobow Samantha Hollobow 5'8" | OH Chantilly | 2023 State VA and Aspen Nardelli Aspen Nardelli 5'11" | RS Chantilly | 2023 State VA . Critical back row players Emily Cortez and Angelina Barrera Angelina Barrera 5'2" | DS/L Chantilly | 2023 State VA will also depart. Returning are Mambu, libero Nola Murphy Nola Murphy 5'6" | DS/L Chantilly | 2025 State VA , outside Frida Sagastume and middle Avery Mercadante Avery Mercadante 5'9" | MB Chantilly | 2024 State VA . Frosh Sarah Kim Sarah Kim 5'6" | S Chantilly | 2026 State VA and sophomore Hala Younes could share the setting duties next year.
Washington Catholic Athletic Conference First Team
Emerson Sellman Emerson Sellman 6'3" | OH Academy of Holy Cross | 2024 State #43 Nation VA OH (Holy Cross/JR), Grace Maria Grace Maria 6'2" | OH Bishop O'Connell | 2023 State #150 Nation VA OH (O’Connell/SR), Alina D’Andrade Alina D’Andrade 5'8" | S Elizabeth Seton | 2023 State VA S (Elizabeth Seton/SR), Natalia PeBenito Natalia PeBenito 5'7" | DS/L Good Counsel | 2024 State VA DS/L (Good Counsel/JR), Erin Debiec Erin Debiec 6'1" | S Bishop O'Connell | 2024 State #85 Nation VA S (O’Connell), Emily Farrell Emily Farrell 6'1" | OH St. Mary Ryken | 2024 State VA OH (Ryken/SR), Pam McCune Pam McCune 6'2" | MB St. Johns | 2023 State #186 Nation VA MB (St. Johns/SR), Kiylah Presley Kiylah Presley 6'0" | MB Bishop McNamara | 2024 State VA MB (McNamera/JR)
Emerson Sellman Emerson Sellman 6'3" | OH Academy of Holy Cross | 2024 State #43 Nation VA won player of the year.
Independent School League First Team
Jada Aksu Jada Aksu 6'0" | RS Georgetown Day | 2025 State VA RS (Georgetown Day/SO), Sydney Bryant Sydney Bryant 5'7" | S Flint Hill | 2026 State VA OH (Flint Hill/SR), Nala Cornegy Nala Cornegy 6'3" | MB Episcopal | 2023 State VA MB (Episcopal/SR), Laiya Ebo Laiya Ebo 6'1" | RS Holton Arms | 2023 State VA OH (Holton Arms/SR), Alexis Ewing Alexis Ewing 6'3" | OH Bullis | 2025 State VA OH (Bullis/SO), EllaMae Fitzgerald EllaMae Fitzgerald 5'8" | DS/L Episcopal | 2023 State VA OH (Episcopal/SR), Ryla Jones Ryla Jones 6'4" | MB Flint Hill | 2024 State #93 Nation VA MB (Flint Hill/JR), Renee Jones Renee Jones 6'5" | RS Flint Hill | 2024 State VA RS (Flint Hill/JR), Sydney Mayfield Sydney Mayfield 5'11" | RS Bullis | 2025 State VA OH (Bullis/FR), Mickhaila Murray Mickhaila Murray 5'11" | OH Flint Hill | 2024 State VA OH (Flint Hill/JR), Adalena Rodgers Adalena Rodgers 5'10" | S Potomac | 2025 State VA S (Potomac/SO), Clara Yu Clara Yu 5'10" | S Georgetown Day | 2024 State VA S (Georgetown Day/JR)
Carey Brown L (Holy Child/SR), Isabela Fowlkes Isabela Fowlkes 6'1" | RS Maret | 2023 State VA OH (Maret/SR), Isabel Gurney L/OH (Sidwell Friends/SR), Julia Monlux MB (Georgetown Visitation/JR), Norah oppenheim Norah oppenheim 5'11" | OH St. Andrews | 2025 State VA OH (St. Andrews/SO), Olivia Shank Olivia Shank 5'3" | DS/L Georgetown Visitation | 2025 State VA L (Georgetown Visitation/SO)
Northern Virginia High Schools with State Championships
14 – Loudoun County
4 – Loudoun Valley
2 – Hylton, Langley, Stone Bridge, Alexandria City
1 – Briar Woods, Chantilly, Colgan, Forest Park, Tuscarora, James Wood