Skilled veterans helped produce a special volleyball season for metro high schools this past fall.
A Cedar Falls program that captured its second Class 5A state championship in the last three seasons led the way with six first-team All-Metro selections as voted on by the coaches of Cedar Falls, Columbus, East, Waterloo Christian and West.
Mississippi State recruit Akacia Brown and libero Kirsten Graves were among the honorees who saw court time during each of the Tigers’ championship runs. Brown finished her impressive senior season with an average of 4.66 kills per set on .385 hitting and 2.77 digs per set. Graves led the Tiger back row with 4.18 digs per set and recorded 51 aces.
Cedar Falls setter Emerson Green and middles Alayna Yates and Jada Golden-Smith completed the Tigers’ senior first-team selections. Green averaged 10.18 assists per set and finished with 83 blocks. Yates hit over .500 with 2.96 kills per set and 101 blocks. Golden-Smith was a .398 hitter with 2.14 kills per set and 75 blocks.
Junior Emmy Wedgbury of Cedar Falls also earned a place on the first team after her first season as a full-rotation player. Wedgbury ranked second on the team with 2.8 digs per set and stepped up with 10 kills in the state championship match.
Waterloo West senior outside hitter Avery Kroll returned to the first team after helping the Wahawks enter Class 5A’s state rankings during a 27-14 season. Kroll averaged 4.58 kills per set on .362 hitting.
Columbus senior Emma Purdy averaged 2.68 kills per set to earn a place on the first team after helping lead the Sailors to a 20-win season.
Waterloo Christian showcased growth with a strong freshman class helping the Regents secure eight wins this season. The Regents were led by freshman setter Lauren Bergstrom, who earned a second team All-Metro nod.
West’s trio of senior outside hitter Lauren Conrey, freshman Sahara Williams and junior libero Caira Hall were all named to the second team. East libero Jenna O’Donnell and setter Grace Frost were second-team honorees, while Columbus middle Megan Knudtson and Cedar Falls freshman Katie Remmert rounded out the second team.
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