Player of the Year: Kristin Buter
Not only does Bowie High senior Kristin Buter make her third appearance on the all-county first team, she successfully defended her title as the Star/Gazette Volleyball Player of the Year. Once again the dominant outside hitter in the county, Buter registered 214 kills, 98 aces and 41 assists as the Bulldogs captured their third consecutive 4A South Region title. Buter peaked during the playoffs, getting 71 kills during the four-match stretch, including 19 kills in a losing cause against Magruder in the 4A state semifinals. Buter is currently getting several looks from Division I colleges and will continue to play club volleyball for the next nine months. The two-time Star/Gazette Player of the Year concluded her high school career with more than 600 kills and was the last of a stellar lineage that included older sisters Jen Buter and Lauren Buter.
Coach of the Year: Barbara Sturman
In her first season at the helm of the Gwynn Park volleyball team, Sturman led the Yellow Jackets to the 3A/2A league title and a stunning five-game victory against Bowie in the county championship match. Sturman guided the Yellow Jackets through a perfect league record, including a three-game sweep against defending champion Douglass. All three Gwynn Park setbacks came against non-county teams — Wilde Lake, Severna Park and South River. South River swept the Yellow Jackets in the 3A East Region quarterfinals as Sturman bid farewell to six senior starters. But clearly the highlight of Sturmanís first year came against Bowie in the inaugural county championship when the Yellow Jackets defeated the three-time 4A South Region champions in a five-set thriller at Largo on Nov. 3.
Megan Philbrick, Seton, Sr., outside hitter: A key figure in the Roadrunnersí success the past two seasons, Philbrick concluded her prep career with 171 kills, 103 blocks and 133 digs this year. Selected to the Star/Gazette first team and the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference first team for the second straight year, Philbrick patrolled the middle of the court superbly and often rotated to the outside to receive sets. Philbrick, a central focus of the Seton attack during her junior year when the Roadrunners captured the WCAC title, plans to play in college.
Kim Dormer, Bowie, Sr., outside hitter: Also making her second appearance on the first team, Dormer played several valuable roles for the Bulldogs. Initially designated as an outside hitter or defensive specialist because of her passing skills, Dormer was often called upon to do much of the setting. The versatile senior displayed plenty of range and poise, collecting nearly 200 assists. Dormer also had 70 kills and 108 service aces this fall as the Bulldogs captured their third straight region title.
Kamisha Kellam, McNamara, Sr., middle blocker: Another repeat performer on the first team, Kellam was a force in the middle for McNamara. She led the Mustangs with 224 kills, 201 digs and 143 blocks and was third on the team with 49 service aces. Throughout her career, Kellam proved capable of changing the outcome of a match with her play at the net. She repeatedly could take away an opposing teamís best outside hitter with her blocking skills and she could be called upon to deliver kills. She was named to the WCAC first team for the second straight year.
Sarah Curran, Seton, Sr., setter: Making her second appearance on the Star/Gazette first team, Curran led the team with 424 assists. She also had 152 digs and added 37 blocks. She compiled more than 1,200 assists during her career and also was one of the teamís most consistent servers. Curran was named to the WCAC first team for the second straight year. She is hoping to play volleyball in college.
Heather McDaniel, Bowie, Sr., middle blocker: A three-year starter after playing soccer as a freshman, McDaniel continued to improve with each season. An all-county second-team selection last fall, McDaniel amassed 112 kills, 97 blocks and 87 aces for the Bulldogs. She enhanced her skills by playing club volleyball the last three years. She often delivered blocks and kills in key situations and occasionally rattled off service runs of 10 straight points.
Ali Philbrick, Seton, Jr., outside hitter: Perhaps the most talented underclassman in the county, Philbrick joined her older sister on the Roadrunnersí front row and was a key component in their success the past two seasons. Philbrick had 209 kills, 266 digs and 24 blocks this season as Seton reached the WCAC semifinals one year after winning the conference title. One of the best all-around players on the team and in the conference, Philbrick will be asked to play a bigger role for the Roadrunners next season. She was named to the WCAC second team and will be one of the top seniors in the conference and in the county next fall.
Terri Ford, Douglass, Sr., outside hitter: Another repeat member of the first team, Ford was the main bright spot for the 6-8 Eagles this season. Blessed with a solid swing and a crisp serve, Ford collected 168 service winners, 100 kills and 133 aces this fall as the only returning starter from the defending county 3A champions. After transferring from Seton, Ford twice made the Star/Gazette first team at Douglass and amassed more than 350 kills and 300 aces while donning an Eaglesí jersey.
Jasmin Elder, Gwynn Park, Sr., setter: Elder helped guide the Yellow Jackets to the 3A/2A league and county titles with 227 assists, 82 kills and 189 service points, including 99 aces. Elder was not only a versatile player on the floor she also was a vocal and spiritual leaders of the squad. Three days after the season ended, Elder suffered a broken femur in a car accident that claimed the life of her friend and former club teammate Veronica Cabacungan. She has plans for a quick recovery and expects to play in college at Georgia State next fall.
Nakia Williams and Joanna Murray, Bowie
Brittany Hayes and Jessica Bradford, Seton
Kelli Sullivan, Amanda Brosch and Diana Amariei, Roosevelt
Shelly Engel and Christine Bugtai, Grace Brethren
Aliyyah Blake and Ashley Merritt, McNamara
Courtney Powell and Ashley Harris, Flowers
Flavia Amariei and Brittney Dildy, High Point
Issa Moquette and Breaun Garner, Northwestern
Katie Donovan, Pallotti
Shea Hess-Weldner, Laurel
Shantell Campbell, Gwynn Park
Tamara Rogers and Jamie Gillespie, Oxon Hill
Samantha Herbert, Parkdale