EASTERN – As summer heats up and the Kentucky High School Athletic Association’s Dead Period comes to an end, the Allen Central volleyball program will begin its preparation for the 2015 season. The KHSAA Dead Period will run through July 9. Allen Central is scheduled to conduct its first practice one week later on July 16.
The Rebels are set to return to the court after compiling a 31-8 record in the 2014 season. Allen Central captured its eighth 15th Region All ‘A’ Classic championship, fifth 15th Region championship, ninth Floyd County Conference crown, eighth 58th District title and concluded the campaign ranked 25th in the state in 2014. Allen Central brings back several experienced players and some new contributors. Allen Central players will continue to hustle and play with plenty of determination as veteran head coach, Colonel Larry Maynard, looks to add wins to his 407-158 varsity record.
Allen Central will be led by Katie Kendrick, Sarah Grindrod and Jannah Halbert. All three Allen Central volleyball players were First Team All-State selections and will lead as captains of this year’s squad. Last year, Kendrick pounded in 567 kills on .357 hitting, tallying 59 service aces on 96 percent serving, 203 total blocks and 363 digs. She was selected for the All ‘A’ All-State tournament team and claimed 58th District and 15th Region MVP honors. Grindrod had 207 kills on .334 hitting, smacked in 60 service aces while serving at 98 percent and registered 126 total blocks and 273 digs. She was also selected for the All ‘A’ All-State tournament, All-Conference, All-District tournament and All-15th Region tournament teams. Halbert has exceptional talent as the setter and floor general for the Allen Central squad. She led the team with 913 assists and slapped in 45 service aces. Halbert also dug up 205. She also was named to the All-Conference, All-District and the All-15th Region tournament teams.
Adding to the fray for the Allen Central unit are Hayley Pinson, Emily Johnson, Haley Smith and Breanna Thompson. Pinson has proven herself as an outside hitter, registering 172 kills, 13 blocks and 76 digs. She was selected for the All-Conference and All-District teams. Johnson is demonstrating that she can cover the floor. She registered 130 kills and earned 21 blocks and 69 digs. Smith patrols the back row as a defensive specialist, serving at 95 percent and earning 26 aces last season. She was credited with 179 digs, excelling in the back row. She was also named to the All-Conference and All-District teams. Thompson, also a defensive specialist, could be relied upon to get the ball to target nine out of 11 times. She earned 184 digs and served at 98 percent, landing 29 aces. For her strong performance, Thompson was named to the All-15th Region, All-Conference and All-District teams.
Also in the mix for the Rebels are Kelsie Jackson, Lauryn Stumbo, Kyra Harmon, Julia Flanery and Lakyn Wallace. Jackson flourished as a forward, registering 138 kills and 58 blocks and being selected for the All-District and All-15th Region tournament teams. Stumbo is an athletic player who is set to make a comeback for the Rebels. She was out for one-third of the 2014 season with an injury but was a solid defensive specialist, earning 114 digs and serving at 93 percent while landing 15 aces. Harmon served as the Libero and stepped up her game after Stumbo’s injury. She played impressively, earning 96 digs. Harmon also landed 13 aces while serving at 94 percent. She excelled in the 15th Region Tournament, earning a spot on the all-tournament team for her efforts. Flanery had limited playing time but proved herself throughout the season. She knocked in 32 kills and was credited with 26 digs. Wallace earned 62 assists, six aces, 11 digs and one block in limited varsity playing time.
Front row players Amber Stumbo, Megan Jones, and Karlee Moore will also contribute for the Rebels. Shawna Holbrook, Kaley Bates and eighth-grader Kiara Warrens are additional players who will add to a deep Allen Central attack.
New players for the Allen Central varsity volleyball program are Autumn Tackett, Lindsay Banks, Alivia Stumbo and Kamryn Webb.
This year’s version of the Allen Central volleyball team will combine experience, ability, intensity and unity. The Rebels promise to be an exciting, aggressive and hard-hitting prep volleyball club. Allen Central has claimed four consecutive 15th Region titles.