The achievement went nearly unnoticed, but Minnesota has a new national champion in its midst.
The Minnesota Select 18-1 girls’ volleyball team won the USA Volleyball Junior National Championship in Milwaukee on May 1. The 18-1s — the Select’s top team — defeated Laguna Beach (Calif.) 25-12, 25-20 in the finals of the tournament’s top division, the 18 Open Division.
“It’s the first national championship for our club and the first ever for a Minnesota team in the 18 Open division,” said Select coach Scott Jackson, who also coaches at Wayzata High School. “It’s a huge accomplishment for us and reaffirms that Minnesota volleyball is alive and well.”
Three team members — Champlin Park’s Sydney Hilley, Lakeville South’s Jenny Mosser and Prior Lake’s C.C. McGraw — made the 12-player all-tournament team. Hilley, the Star Tribune Metro Player of the Year last fall, was named tournament MVP.
“I think any of them could have been chosen MVP,” Jackson said. “Jenny was remarkable all weekend, and C.C., she’s a special player. The thing about Sydney was her leadership. She always puts her competitive stamp on a match, but she showed focus and fire and has turned into a classic leader.”
The remaining players were a collection of elite metro players: Hopkins’ Jasmyn Martin, Cretin-Derham Hall’s Brynn Carlson, Osseo’s Tina Boe, Minneapolis Southwest’s April Houston, Roseville’s Sara Hain and Delano’s Tori Hanson.
The players will stay together through June to play in the AAU National Championships in Orlando.
• Noel Quinn stepped down as the girls’ soccer coach at Eden Prairie to head up the boys’ soccer program at St. Thomas Academy. Quinn led the Eagles to Class 2A runner-up finishes in 2014 and 2015.
• Breck has hired former Gophers volleyball player Morgan Bohl to coach the volleyball team.
• Jericho Sims, the 6-9 junior forward for the Cristo Rey boys’ basketball team, recently picked up an offer from the University of Texas.