Nine schools represented on 2020-21 LSWA All-Louisiana Volleyball Teams

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BATON ROUGE, La. – The Louisiana Sports Writers Association (LSWA) announced the 2020-21 All-Louisiana Volleyball teams as LSU’s Taylor Bannister earned Player of the Year honors and Xavier’s Pat Kendrick and Louisiana-Lafayette’s Heather Mazeitis-Fontenot were named Co-Coaches of the Year.

Xavier’s Semira Blair was named the Newcomer of the Year and Southeastern Louisiana’s Kailin Newsome earned Freshman of the Year honors. Northwestern State’s Haley Hoang was named the Libero of the Year.

Nine schools were represented on the 2020-21 LSWA All-Louisiana Volleyball teams, led by Louisiana-Lafayette and Tulane with three each. LSU earned two spots, while Dillard, Loyola New Orleans, McNeese, Northwestern State, Southeastern Louisiana and Xavier each had one.

Kendrick led Xavier to an 18-4 overall record, including a perfect 12-0 in GCAC play. Xavier won its conference tournament to qualify for the NAIA National Championship Tournament. XULA led the state of Louisiana in both victories and winning percentage, and was the only school in Louisiana to qualify for a national postseason tournament.

In her final campaign as Louisiana-Lafayette’s head coach, Mazeitis-Fontenot led the Ragin’ Cajuns to the program’s first-ever national ranking at No. 15. ULL had its second-best start after opening the season with a double-digit win streak of 11-0. The team finished the season with a 17-7 overall mark, including an 11-5 Sun Belt record.

Bannister was named to both the AVCA South All-Region Team and All-SEC team. The senior right side was second in the SEC in both kills per set (4.38) and points per set (5.11). She was seventh in the SEC in aces per set at .34. Bannister averaged 0.65 blocks and 1.91 digs per set.

Blair was the GCAC Player and Newcomer of the Year and was an AVCA NAIA All-Southeast honorable mention. The sophomore setter averaged 4.98 assists per set and XULA had its highest hitting percentage when Blair was in the lineup. She led the team in aces per set at 0.55.

Newsome was the Southland Conference Freshman of the Year and was a first team all-conference selection. The outside hitter ranked second in the Southland in kills per set at 4.18 and ranked third with 4.54 points per set. She led Southeastern Louisiana in kills (280) and was second in digs (184).

Hoang averaged 5.93 digs per set, including 5.65 digs in conference matches, before suffering a season-ending injury just after the midpoint of the season. Hoang earned Defensive Player of the Week or Honorable Mention four out of five weeks before her injury. Following her injury, opponents hit .071 points better and NSU had 11.7 less digs per match and 3.0 less digs per set.

2020-21 LSWA All-Louisiana Volleyball Teams

First Team

Pos.        Name                                    Class      School                                  

RS           Taylor Bannister                Sr.           LSU

S              Avery Breaux                      Sr.           Louisiana-Lafayette

OH          Lexie Douglas                     Sr.           Tulane

OH          Kailin Newsome                Fr.           Southeastern Louisiana

OH          Hali Wisnoskie                   Sr.           Louisiana-Lafayette

MH         Kayla Dinkins                      Jr.           Tulane

L              Haley Hoang                       So.          Northwestern State


Second Team

Pos.        Name                                    Class      School                                  

S              Kailyn O’Neal                     Jr.           Loyola New Orleans

S              Karli Rose                            So.          LSU

OH          Kelsey Bennett                  Jr.           Louisiana-Lafayette

OH          Desire Neal                        Jr.           Dillard

OH          Regan Stiawalt                  Jr.           McNeese

MB         Vivica Price-Spraggins     Sr.           Xavier

L              Sophia Ervanian               Fr.           Tulane

PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Taylor Bannister, LSU, RS

LIBERO OF THE YEAR: Haley Hoang, Northwestern State, L

NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR: Semira Blair, Xavier, S

FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR: Kailin Newsome, Southeastern Louisiana, OH

CO-COACHES OF THE YEAR: Heather Mazeitis-Fontenot, Louisiana-Lafayette; Pat Kendrick, Xavier

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