Vilonia Eagle Volleyball teams end season on a good note

We had a really good season, coaches repeated at a banquet for the Lady Eagles Volleyball program held, Friday night, in the Vilonia High School cafeteria.  

Coaches Kim Bartlett (9th grade), Jodi Brewer (8th grade), Mark Copeland (7th grade) and Brandi Johns (seniors) all spoke.  Each handed out awards to some players and compliments to all.

“We got off to a bit of rocky start,” Johns said referring to the seniors. “We were 15-13. However, we were 4-1 in conference. It took us a bit to get in the groove and used to playing together as a team but once we figured it out it was an amazing sight to see. We ended with a conference play with a battle against Greenbrier for the top seed from our side in the conference tournament. We went in needing to beat them in three games or if we beat them in four it would go by scores. We took them in four games and when we checked the scores we beat them by four scores. That made us the top seed in the conference tournament from our side. Where we beat Clarksville and Alma landing us in the finals against Harrison. That made us conference tournament runner up with a second seed in the state tournament. Unfortunately, we were matched up with Paragould who ended up second in the state and were not able to pull off a win but played really hard and definitely made it tough for them. We had a truly fantastic season. This group (of girls) were so close to each other that it made it a joy to come in and work with them each day. I am very proud of what they were able to accomplish this year and more so for their incredibly hard work.”

Johns also thanked several people on behalf of the team as well as the parents, fans and school administration. In addition, she thanked Coach Rebekah Stout for “being by my side” all year as well as the team managers Kaitlyn Weaver, Sydney Weaver and Sydney Johnson and other coaches for helping various events.

Senior team recognitions included:

Best attacker—Tori Wilbanks

Best server—Kortanie Ruhland

Best setter—Talyn Lawrence

Best passer—Abby Hightower

Best blocker—Tori Wilbanks

Most defensive JV—Ashton Rappold 46 digs

Most defensive V—Kristin Wade 150 digs

Most offensive JV—Megan Atkins

Most offensive V—Tori Wilbanks

Most improved—Emily Farmer

Best attitude—Erin Nolan

Most spirited—Hannah Gordon

MVP—Tori Wilbanks

Eagle Award—Kristen Wade

5A awards that are nominated and voted on by the 5A coaches collectively:

5A West All-Conference: Abby Hightower, Kristen Wade, Kortanie Ruhland and Tori Wilbanks

Two 5A West All-State winners: Abby Hightower and Tori Wilbanks

Abby Hightower was also nominated from Vilonia for the All-Star Tournament.

2016 Vilonia High School Volleyball Team


#22 Abby Hightower                                    Sophomores           

#24 Lillian Osier                                         #2 Taylor Aldridge

#11 Kortanie Ruhland                                #14 Bailey McWilliams   

#3 Kristen Wade                                      #7 Hannah Gordon

#21 Kylea Hightower                                #6 Gracie Massey

                                                                  #20 Erin Nolan

Juniors                                              #1 Leigha Halford

#4 Callie Eary                                            #15 Emily Farmer

#12 Talyn Lawrence                                   #17 Erin Fougerousse

#5 Tori Wilbanks                                       #16 Ashton Rappold

#13 Whitney Marr               

#18 Megan Atkins                   

#23 Samantha Pack

The other coaches also announced team awards including:

Setter: Kenzie Floyd 

Server: Farrah Hopkins

Passer: Grace Shannon

Most improved: Chelby Wilson

Front Row: Laynie White and Madison Wright

Eagle Award: Jordyn Alexander

Teammate: Hannah Neeley

Passer: Kaylee Partee

Setter: Lauren Patterson

Blocker: Kim Simanton

Server: Mary Zimmerebner

Hitter: Laney Mears

Most improved: Lainey Wilson

Eagle: Cameron Willhite

Teammate: Cameron Willhite

Linda HicksVHS, FA, VMS