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High Schools

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Chad Ryan | The Journal Gazette
Naarah Foster, back, of the East All-Stars tries to block the shot of Hayley Martin of the North All-Stars.

Lloy Ball coaches East’s win

Lloy Ball said coaching could be in his future when his young kids get a little older.

For now, he has a 1-0 career record after his East All-Stars rallied to beat the North All-Stars in the inaugural All-Northeast Indiana Volleyball Showcase on Sunday at SportONE/Parkview Fieldhouse.

Ball, an Olympic gold medal winner and son of IPFW men’s volleyball coach Arnie Ball, led the East to a 23-25, 27-25, 26-24, 25-15 win over the North, coached by Saint Francis women’s coach Fabiana Souza-Shields.

“I said afterward I am 1-0, and I may retire as a champion,” Ball said. “The sport has been very good to me, and if I can impart some of that knowledge to our young people, I think that is my duty as well. I think coaching is in my future at some point in time.

“They did everything I asked them to do and yet had energy with it. It was important to have fun until the end, then of course we want to win. They were as competitive as I was, which was kind of refreshing.”

After dropping the first set, the competitive juices kicked in for the East.

“It was a little bit of an eye-opener when we lost the first set,” Ball said. “The kids got fired-up and they took it more seriously.”

The East took close decisions in the second and third sets before dominating the fourth.

“All the girls are so talented, and it is a real good atmosphere,” Blackhawk Christian’s Marta Bleed, who played for the East, said. “The energy definitely switched on. We talked about some things we were going to fix, and it was just taking the energy and running with it.”

The two all-star squads were chosen using The Journal Gazette’s 2013 All-Northeast Indiana teams.

“It is an awesome honor,” Ball said of the first of what looks to be multiple all-star matches. “Anytime you can be voted an all-star in your city, that says a lot about the game and how much you have already dedicated to it at a young age.”

The Showcase was organized by Pineapple Volleyball Club assistant director Scott Lauer.

“It was different playing with everybody from different schools and knowing you play with rivals on your same team, and you have to work together,” the East’s Janaya Wilder said. “Everybody has their own kind, like some people might be quiet but everybody is go, go, go all the time.”

For the East, Wilder (Bellmont) had 12 kills and 10 digs, Holly Hankenson (Bellmont) and Marta Bleed (Blackhawk Christian) eight kills, Naarah Foster (homeschool) and Burgundy Price (Woodlan) 15 digs.

For the North, Tionna Williams (Concordia) had 14 kills, while Jackie Quade (Carroll) had 12 kills and Remi Swoverland (Carroll) 10 digs.

Access Fort Wayne TV, through the Allen County Public Library, will air the match on a tape-delayed basis after Jan. 1.

The Showcase was sponsored by First Federal Bank of the Midwest.

gjones@jg.net

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