Sophie Dickson, Yarmouth senior setter: At just 5-foot-1, Dickson is an unexpected power, but many coaches regarded her as the state’s top player. Dickson stood out with a 97% serving percentage, 378 assists and 185 digs in leading Yarmouth to the Class B state championship and its first undefeated season. One coach called her a “force of nature.” 

Danielle Emerson, Biddeford sophomore setter: Emerson was the Tigers’ on-court coach in directing play, especially in the playoffs, and offered perfect sets. She was a big reason why Biddeford went 14-0 in the regular season. Emerson had a 98% serving percentage, 74 aces, 155 kills and 33 digs.

Pearl Friedland-Farley, South Portland senior libero: Friedland-Farley was involved in every single play, didn’t let the ball hit the floor, and dominated on offense. She primarily played libero, but also played outside and setter. She finished with 297 digs, 31 aces and 57 kills, and surpassed 1,000 career digs.

Lizzy Gruber, Gardiner, junior outside hitter: Gruber picked up volleyball as a freshman and made an instant impact on the varsity team. This year, she was the reason Gardiner went undefeated in the regular season. At 6-foot-4, Gruber hits with power and played with precision and skill all the way around, not just in the front. She finished with 289 kills, 88 blocks, 78 digs and 72 aces.  

Caroline Hammond, Marshwood senior outside hitter: With speed, tenacity and consistency, Hammond averaged 11 kills, five aces, eight digs and two assists per match, according to Coach Rob Childs. Hammond often stepped in as an on-court coach, because Childs said she sees the court better than the college players he used to coach in Pennsylvania.

Natalie Moynihan, Scarborough freshman outside hitter: Moynihan delivered the winning point as Scarborough defeated Biddeford in a tense five-set match to earn the Class A championship. Moynihan is as good as the top seniors in the state, many coaches say. She finished with 110 kills, 160 digs, and 63 aces.

Ellie Perry, Gorham senior outside hitter: Coach Emma Tirrell said Perry “earned never-coming-off-the-court” status. Her power and consistency were reflected in her stats, with 125 kills, 81 digs, 33 aces and a .356 hitting percentage.

Maddie Strouse, Scarborough senior middle hitter: Strouse led the No. 2 Red Storm to the state title against top-seeded and undefeated Biddeford on the Tigers’ home court, showing calm, composure and confidence throughout the five-set match. She amassed 187 kills and 53 aces this season, as well as a .324 hitting percentage.

Annaliese Rudberg, Cape Elizabeth senior outside hitter: Rudberg racked up 22 kills in the Class B state final against Yarmouth and was one of the state’s top defensive players. Fearless in the front row, she is a powerful hitter and is talented in getting past tough blockers. Rudberg finished with 200 kills, 212 digs and 39 aces for the season.

Rachel Vose, Washington Academy junior outside hitter: A remarkably fast and consistent anchor on defense, Vose was a big reason why the Raiders went undefeated and claimed the Class C title. Vose stood out in every game, covering the entire court with efficiency and power as she amassed 123 digs, 54 aces and 11 kills. When the Raiders needed a big play, Vose was there. 

COACH OF THE YEAR

Jim Senecal, Yarmouth: The Clippers had just one returning starter from 2020-21, yet won their sixth Class B title in 10 postseasons and compiled an unbeaten record for the first time. One Class A coach called Yarmouth the best team in the state. The Clippers beat Scarborough, the Class A champion, 3-1 in the regular season. 

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