Another season goes by and another year of success for southern Brazoria County volleyball teams. As a result, players from Brazoswood, Columbia and Brazosport earned superlative honors for The Facts All-Southern Brazoria County team.
Honorees included Lady Bucs Emma Williams, Madie Johnson and Amalee Frey; Lady Roughnecks Jayda Martinez and Kirsten Bragg; and Lady Exporter Breanna Brimage.
Offensive player of the year honors went to Williams; defensive player of the year went to Johnson; libero of the year to Martinez; setter of the year to Brimage; opposite hitter of the year to Bragg; and newcomer of the year to Frey.
Williams was a force to be reckoned with all season. With 268 kills and averaging 2.2 kills per set, she put focus on being in position to score points for her team wherever she was at on the court.
And offense wasn’t the only thing she had in her arsenal, as she accrued 153 blocks this season.
As she’s only a sophomore, her ceiling to become a better player is high and she should be a candidate for more honors in the seasons to come.
Johnson, another sophomore, was a defensive specialist for the Lady Buccaneers this season with an average of 5.1 digs per set. She totaled 606 digs and also had 538 serve receives.
“It’s an honor to be picked as defensive player of the year. I thank God for the opportunity and ability to play the game,” Johnson said. “I’ve always enjoyed every part of the game and the hustle and drive put into it.”
Besides her aptitude to prevent kills and aces on points, she was able to set her teammates up with 79 assists and earn some points for her team on her own with 53 service aces.
Her versatility on multiple fronts was crucial for the Lady Bucs.
Martinez has been a mainstay on the superlatives list since her sophomore season, when she won defensive player of the year. Now she has earned defensive player of the year and back-to-back libero of the year awards in her career at Columbia.
“Earning libero of the year two years in a row is an awesome experience and really showed that all my hard work has paid off,” Martinez said.
She proved her skills as a libero with 455 digs and 273 serve receives, showing her prowess on defense all season. She also showed she can do it on the offensive end, striking 29 aces.
Though she’s won honors for as long as she’s been in high school, that doesn’t mean she hasn’t stopped trying to improve herself in multiple areas.
“I improved the most this year on being very vocal on the court and being a leader on and off the court,” she said. “With it being my last year, I really just let it all out on the court and tried my hardest not only for myself, but for my team.”
Brimage is a senior, and she led by example by setting up her teammates for success. She led the team with 301 assists while also being productive offensively with 50 kills and 42 aces.
Her defensive ability, with 140 digs, made her a crucial part of the Lady Exporter team. With this being her first season on the superlative list, she has progressed throughout her career to earn a spot in her last year playing volleyball as a Lady Ship.
"Being a setter was a position I was hesitant to try, but I have no regrets," Brimage said. "Once I committed to the position it just felt natural, I am very honored to have been named setter of the year."
Bragg was the newcomer of the year last year and has landed another honor as the opposite hitter of the year this season. She was critical for the Lady Roughnecks in a variety of ways, gaining 176 kills and setting up 12 assists on the season.
She also played well on defense with 315 digs and 286 serve receives, rounding out her leadership skills for the Lady ‘Necks.
“I’ve improved on being a better leader and motivator for my team, even if they were upperclassmen or underclassmen,” Bragg said. “I’ve learned there will be ups and downs throughout the season, but working as a team and pushing through can get the team through many hardships.”
Frey is the newcomer of the year and she was a solid part of the Lady Bucs defense. She accumulated 232 digs and 273 serve receives on the season, showing her potential for the years to come.
While only being sophomore, the Lady Bucs trio of Williams, Johnson and Frey will have the opportunity to do something special for Brazoswood.