Chris Parent (@chrisparent)

Bannister Leads LSWA All-Louisiana Honors

LSUsports.net (@LSUsports)
LSUsports.net (@LSUsports)
LSU Sports Interactive

RUSTON, La. – For the second-consecutive year, LSU right-side hitter Taylor Bannister was named the Player of the Year, while Xavier head coach Pat Kendrick earned Coach of the Year accolades, highlighting the 2018 Louisiana Sports Writers Association All-Louisiana collegiate volleyball team.

Tulane junior libero Kaylie McHugh was named the Libero of the Year, while teammate Makala Heidelberg was voted the Freshman of the Year, rounding out the 2018 superlative honors.

Tulane boasted three selections to the first team, as right-side hitter Erika Hansel and middle blocker Dayna Kern joined McHugh, along with LSU’s Bannister, Xavier outside hitter Kayla Black, UL-Lafayette outside hitter Hali Wisnoskie and Northwestern State outside hitter Hannah Brister.

The teams were voted on by the volleyball media relations members in the state based on school nominations. Players were selected on a 12-1 voting scale, while liberos were voted upon in a second category on a 2-1 basis.

Bannister, who was named First Team All-SEC, led the Tigers in kills (456), kills per set (4.04), attacks (1,099) and ranked second on the team in aces (19). She led LSU in kills in 25 matches this season, ending 26 contests with double-digit kills. She notched a career-high 36 kills against SMU, the second-most kills in a five-set match in program history.

Xavier head coach Pat Kendrick was voted the LSWA Coach of the Year for the second-straight season after leading Xavier to a 26-6 record (tied school record for wins in a season) and GCAC regular season and conference championships, leading to an NAIA National Championship tournament berth. Kendrick was also honored as the AVCA NAIA Southeast Region Coach of the Year (program’s first ever AVCA coaching honor) as well as the GCAC Coach of the Year. She earned the program’s first-ever victory against a ranked opponent with a 4-set win over No. 22 Indiana Wesleyan, and won 48-49 sets vs. GCAC teams.

McHugh, the LSWA Libero of the Year, led Tulane with 529 digs across 33 matches in 2018 (4.43 digs per set). She also broke the AAC single-season record for service aces with the Green Wave, recording 56 total with an average of 0.46 (7th-best nationally). McHugh was named the MVP at the Rutgers Invitational, Defensive MVP at the Allstate Sugar Bowl Invitational, Defensive MVP at the Tulane I-10 Tournament and was named to the Georgia Tech All-Tournament Team.

Freshman of the Year, Makala Heidelberg, notched 10 double-doubles in her first season with Tulane, tallying 254 kills and 460 digs. The freshman tallied double-digit digs in 28 of Tulane’s 33 matches, while posting a career-best 22 against Houston. Heidelberg was named the MVP at the Tulane I-10 Tournament, while also making the Georgia Tech Invitational All-Tournament Team and the AAC Honor Roll.

The second team was made up of three middle blockers in Loyola’s Tylar Beckham, Kaitlyn Grice from New Orleans and Catherine Griffith from ULM, along with a pair of outside hitters in Keegan Nelms from McNeese and Desire Neal from Dillard. Senior Channing Burleson held down the second squad, while Xavier setter Eva Le Guillou rounded out the seven-member team.

ALL-LSWA COLLEGE VOLLEYBALL TEAM (AS CHOSEN BY THE VOLLEYBALL CONTACTS IN THE STATE OF LOUISIANA. Voters could not vote for athletes or coaches from their schools. Voting was conducted on a 12-1 scale based on points for six players on team; 2-1 basis for liberos.)

FIRST TEAM

POS, NAME/SCHOOL/CLASS/HOMETOWN/NOTES (PTS)

RS, Taylor Bannister/LSU/So./Missouri City, Texas/1st Team All-SEC, 456 Kills (152)

OH, Kayla Black/Xavier/So./Spring, Texas/AVCA NAIA All-Southeast Region 1st Team, GCAC POTY (133)

RS, Erika Hansel/Tulane/Jr./Genoa, Ill./1st Team All-A   AC, 297 kills, 75 total blocks (116)

OH, Hali Wisnoskie/UL-Lafayette/So./Columbus, Texas/ 2nd Team All-SBC, 331 kills (81)

MB, Dayna Kern/Tulane/Sr./Vancouver, British Columbia/1st Team All-AAC, 131 total blocks (75)

OH, Hannah Brister/Northwestern State/So./Paincourtville, La./2nd Team All-SLC, 314 kills (73)

L, Kaylie McHugh/Tulane/Jr./Davie, Fla./Broke AAC single-season aces record w/56, 529 digs (16)

SECOND TEAM

POS, NAME/SCHOOL/CLASS/HOMETOWN/NOTES (PTS)

MB, Tylar Beckham/Loyola/Jr./New Orleans, La./1st Team All-Conference, 337 kills, 146 blocks (72)

MB, Kaitlyn Grice/New Orleans/Sr./Valrico, Fla./2nd Team All-SLC, 285 kills, 157 blocks (71)

S, Eva Le Guillou/Xavier/So./Velizy-Villacoublay, France/AVCA NAIA All-SE Region HM, GCAC Setter of the Year, 1,011 assists (66)

OH, Keegan Nelms/McNeese/Jr./Santa Fe, Texas/2nd Team All-SLC, 314 kills, 254 digs (46)

OH/MB, Desire Neal/Dillard/Fr./Sacramento, Calif./1st Team All-GCAC, 330 kills (41)

MB, Catherine Griffith/ULM/R-Jr./Raleigh, N.C./235 kills, 100 blocks (36)

L, Channing Burleson/Northwestern State/Sr./Midland, Texas/1st Team All-SLC, 493 digs (9)

HONORABLE MENTION

Lindsay Flory, LSU; Vivica Price-Spraggins, Xavier; Hanna Rovira, UL-Lafayette; Makala Heidelberg, Tulane; Lexie Douglas, Tulane; Raigen Cianciulli, LSU

SUPERLATIVE AWARDS

Player of the Year – Taylor Bannister, LSU

Voting – Bannister (LSU) 11, Black (Xavier) 2, Hansel (Tulane) 2

Libero of the Year – Kaylie McHugh, Tulane

Voting – McHugh (Tulane) 8, Cianciulli (LSU) 4, Burleson (Northwestern State) 2, Formilan (Xavier) 1

Freshman of the Year – Makala Heidelberg, Tulane

Voting – Heidelberg (Tulane) 8, Demerjian (Centenary) 2, Formilan (Xavier) 2, Hendricks (LA Tech) 1, Havel (McNeese) 1, Foreman (LSU) 1

Coach of the Year – Pat Kendrick, Xavier

Voting – Kendrick (Xavier) 9, Barnes (Tulane) 6

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