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Crater leads in all-MWL voting

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Comets earn league-best three first-team nods with Ashland’s Evans

Crater may have finished fourth in the Midwestern League volleyball standings but the Comets were No. 1 when it came to first-team all-conference selections recently after voting by the league’s coaches.

Crater scored three first-team honors in juniors Kate Stidham, Kendra Bittle and Madison Kocina to lead all schools in that category.

Ashland senior Amelia Evans also earned a spot on the all-MWL first team, which was headlined by MWL player of the year Bridget Gould of North Bend.

Stidham earned recognition as the best setter in the conference with her first-team nod after posting 672 assists with an average hitting percentage of .317 this past season. The 5-foot-9 floor leader also finished with 55 kills, 157 digs and 50 aces for the Comets.

Outside hitters Bittle and Kocina also left their stamp on the season for Crater with strong efforts.

The 6-2 Bittle finished with 308 total kills with an average hitting percentage of .357.

The 6-1 Kocina posted a .363 average hitting percentage with 196 total kills despite being unable to travel for a portion of the season.

Evans proved instrumental in helping Ashland place fifth in the MWL, with the middle blocker accounting for 135 total kills and 63 blocks to average 3.1 kills and 1.5 blocks per set for the Grizzlies.

Summer Sawyer of North Bend and Bre Gibbons of Churchill shared MWL coach of the year honors after leading their respective teams to a share of the conference title.

ALL-MWL VOLLEYBALL

PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Bridget Gould, So., North Bend.

CO-COACHES OF THE YEAR: Summer Sawyer, North Bend, and Bre Gibbons, Churchill.

FIRST TEAM

Bridget Gould, So., North Bend; Sydney Wilson, Sr., North Bend; Kate Stidham, Jr., Crater; Kendra Bittle, Jr., Crater; Stella Scott, Sr., Churchill; Madison Kocina, Jr., Crater; Amelia Evans, Sr., Ashland; Bayleigh Wodke, Jr., Thurston.

SECOND TEAM

Sierra Martin, Sr., Thurston; Amelia Gansen, Jr., Churchill; Elizabeth Gansen, Sr., Churchill; Olivia Knutson, Sr., North Bend; Abby Trautman, Jr., Eagle Point; Mya Massey, Sr., North Bend; Nyah Mitchell, Fr., North Eugene; Scout Martin, So., Thurston.

HONORABLE MENTION

Cameron Christian, Jr., Ashland; Brooke Peterson, So., Churchill; Olivia Cole, Sr., Churchill; Sadie Scott, So., Churchill; Joslyhn Pope, So., Crater; Danica Huntoon, Fr., Crater; Payton Marshall, Sr., North Bend; Kylie Rankins, Jr., Springfield; Bailey Tovey, So., Thurston; Jocelyn Rush, Jr., Willamette.

Have a story idea? Reach sports editor Kris Henry at 541-776-4488, khenry@rosebudmedia.com or www.twitter.com/Kris_Henry

Andy Atkinson / Mail TribuneCrater's Kate Stidham, right meets Thurston's Gracee Robertson at the net to earn a point for the Comets.
Andy Atkinson / Mail TribuneCrater's Madison Kocina hits over the net for a point against Thurston.
Andy Atkinson / Mail Tribune Crater’s Kendra Bittle makes a hit through the La Salle Prep defense during the spring.