The more things change, sometimes the more they simply stay the same.
The Southwestern Lady Warrior volleyball team just kept on rolling along in 2012, winning the 12th Regional title for an impressive fifth year in a row.
And, for the second year in a row, the coaches within the region voted Southwestern senior Erin Cottrell as the Player of the Year in the 12th Region.
However, for the third year in a row, Cottrell holds down the spot as the Commonwealth Journal’s Player of the Year for the All-County Volleyball team for the 2012 season.
Cottrell enjoyed a sensational senior season this past year, tallying 464 kills in helping lead the Lady Warriors to that fifth consecutive regional crown, as well as a 29-11 record.
The Southwestern senior also tallied 476 digs, had 83 blocks, and notched 118 aces on her way to scoring 665 points for the year.
“Erin is a perfect example of how hard work pays off,” stated Southwestern head coach Skip Cottrell.
“She was usually the first in the gym with a ball in her hands and she pushed herself to improve on a daily basis. Erin has been a coach on the floor throughout her career and her intensity always seemed to elevate the play of her teammates.”
Joining Cottrell on our squad are four of her teammates — McKayla Wilson, Samantha Fitzgerald, Kelsie Adams, and Kari Popplewell.
Wilson — also a senior — notched 213 digs for the year while adding 31 aces.
Fitzgerald meanwhile was a force at the net for the Lady Warriors all season long.
Fitzgerald led Southwestern in both blocks and assists for the year, coming up with 141 blocks and 370 assists.
Kelsie Adams finished second on the Lady Warrior team with 346 kills for the season, to go along with 88 aces, 57 assists, and 49 blocks.
Adams led her club for the year with a team-high 540 digs.
Popplewell meanwhile led Southwestern with 558 assists for the season, and notched 44 kills along with 39 aces.
Joining these five Lady Warrior players to round out our team are four players from Pulaski County High School.
Samantha Randolph had a monster junior year for the Lady Maroons, leading her club with 413 kills for the season.
Randolph also notched 204 assists for the year, to go along with 20 blocks, 72 aces, and 186 digs.
Bryanna Black meanwhile had a solid senior year for PC, leading the way for the Lady Maroons with 489 assists.
Black also registered 69 aces, 186 digs, and had 34 kills in helping lead PC to a 23-14 record, a 47th District championship, and a regional runner-up finish.
Sarah Correll led PC with 52 blocks on the year, to go with 246 kills, 194 digs, and 8 assists.
Rounding out our All-County Volleyball Team is Pulaski County’s Jessica Ping.
Ping led the way for her club with 119 aces, tallied 168 kills, 24 blocks and 7 assists.
Congratulations to these nine gifted players for a very solid season of volleyball in 2012.