West Branch senior Abby Knoop celebrates a point with teammates. Photo by Darren Miller.
By Ryan Murken
Your Prep Sports
Abby Knoop and Sarah Lehman entered their senior seasons already regarded as two of the top players in the River Valley Conference.
Knoop and Lehman spent the past several months backing up that assessment with strong seasons.
Regina senior Sarah LehmanOn Monday, their status as two of the best in the conference was cemented as Lehman and Knoop were both named to the RVC Elite all-conference team that is comprised of the top players from each of the conferences two divisions.
Knoop led West Branch to a 21-16 record and a berth in the Class 2A, Region 7 title game.
The 5-foot-10 Knoop led the RVC and all of Class 2A with 454 kills and finished her prep career with more than 900 kills.
Knoop was second on the team with 389 digs and added 41 blocks for West Branch.
Lehman cracked the 1,000-kill barrier as a senior posting her third consecutive season with at least 300 kills, finishing with 303.
The 5-foot-9 Lehman also had a team-high 285 digs to help Regina to a 22-14 record.
After finishing in a tie for the South Division title, Regina had four other players earn all-conference recognition.
Seniors Olivia Wolfe and Grace Swenning and junior Alexa Lehman were all named to the South Division team while junior Katrina Chambliss was an honorable mention selection.
Wolfe finished second on the team with 202 kills this season while Swenning ranked second in the RVC with 825 assists.
West Branch senior Dalana Kron
Alexa Lehman ranked third on the team with 145 kills and was second with 25 blocks.
West Branch had two other players earn all-conference honors as senior Dalana Kron was named to the South Division squad and senior Claire Bridges was an honorable mention honoree.
Kron led West Branch and ranked third in the RVC with 512 digs.
River Valley Conference All-Conference Teams
Elite Team – Darby Hawtrey, Jr., North Cedar; Taylor Kress, Sr., North Cedar; Morgan Sander, Sr., North Cedar; Emily Hay, Sr., North Cedar; Brianna Morales, Jr., West Liberty; Abby Knoop, Sr., West Branch; Abbie Ruggeberg, Jr., Cascade; Sommer Daniel, Fr., Tipton; Sarah Lehman, Sr., Regina; Jaedynn Evans, Soph., Mid-Prairie; Aubrey Putman, Soph., Wilton; Courtney Schnoor, Sr., Camanche.
North Division Team – LaKaya Lyon, Sr., North Cedar; Aubrey Cady, Sr., North Cedar; Emma Kelchen, Jr., Bellevue; Annie Meyer, Sr., Cascade; Savanah Kremer, Jr., Monticello; Madi Parson, Soph., Camanche; Hannah Nissen, Soph., Camanche; Rebecca Schroeder, Jr., Bellevue; Shauna McAleer, Sr., Northeast; Lauren Ries, Jr., Monticello; Anna Hunt, Sr., Cascade.
Coach of the year – Traci Smith, North Cedar
South Division Team – Kailee Meyer, Sr., Tipton; Blake Ehler, Soph., Tipton; Grace Swenning, Sr., Regina; Dalana Kron, Sr., West Branch; Macy Akers, Soph., West Liberty; Olivia Wolfe, Sr., Regina; Alexa Lehman, Jr., Regina; Kamryn Meyer, Soph., Durant; Cathy Ralfs, Sr., Durant; Kali Milder, Jr., Wilton; Amanda Smith, Soph., Tipton; Jamie Kofron, Soph., Tipton; Callie Poor, Jr., Wilton.
Coach of the year – Amy Calonder, Tipton; Brenda Grunder, Wilton.
Honorable Mention – Emily Hermsen, Soph., Tipton; Ruby Kappeler, Soph., Durant; Regan Scarboro, Sr., Wilton; Claire Bridges, Sr., West Branch; Haddie Anderson, Sr., West Liberty; Katarina Chambliss, Jr., Regina; Amanda Miller, Sr., Mid-Prairie; Jordyn Kuper, Fr., Monticello; Darian Gray, Jr., North Cedar; Whitney Petersen, Sr., Northeast; Sami Puckett, Soph., Camanche; Marissa McAuliffe, Sr., Bellevue; Lisa Tucker, Sr., Cascade.