Parish players make All-Metro teams

Kyle Riviere
kriviere@weeklycitizen.com
Ascension Catholic's Carson Dunn made the All-Metro team. Photo by Chuck Montero.

Just as the all-district volleyball teams were dominated by Ascension Parish, it was much of the same when it came to the Baton Rouge area’s All-Metro squads.

Altogether, eight parish products were selected to teams that were made up of some of the best prep volleyball players of 2016.

The St. Amant Lady Gators had the most selections of their Ascension counterparts.

That didn’t seem realistic the way the season began.

After the Great Flood of 2016 raged through the parish, most of St. Amant was under water.

Players were without homes, without a school, without a gym to play their games and without much of their athletic equipment.

Head coach Allison Leake said of the trying time: “It was devastation and devastation. I had parents texting me, asking what we were going to do. The kids were moping around and were depressed. They wondered if we were even going to have a season. I wanted them to know that we would have a season and that I would do everything I could to make sure of it.”

With the help of donations and with Dutchtown providing a place they could play, St. Amant did have a season—a great season at that.

After a tough 6-7 start, the Lady Gators found a spark and ended the year winning 26 of their final 28 matches. This included an undefeated run in district that yielded another league title.

They earned the No. 3 seed for the playoffs and became the only parish team in 2016 to make a run to the Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA Volleyball State Tournament in Kenner.

In addition to Taylor Tidwell being named district MVP, she also made the All-Metro first team. Tidwell piled up 417 kills, 380 assists and 64 blocks this past season.

Senior teammate Maggie Duplechein also made the first team with 323 kills, 526 assists and 242 digs.

The final slot on the first team for the Lady Gators was filled by senior Brianne Babin—who was the district’s Defensive MVP for a second straight year.

Babin finished with 397 digs, 108 assists and 29 aces.

Madison Anderson was an honorable mention All-Metro selection.

Dutchtown finished as runners-up in the district as they built up a 23-15 record and earned a No. 13 seeding for the playoffs.

Once in the postseason, the Lady Griffins made a run to the second round.

Dutchtown’s lone selection on the All-Metro first team was senior and Tulane signee Kristen Thompson. Thompson finished the year with 391 kills and 51 blocks.

East Ascension was tasked with having to replace many of their best players from 2015. Early in the year, they experienced some growing pains.

However, the Lady Spartans put things together late and earned their way into the playoffs. Once there, they upset Barbe to advance to the second round.

Much of their success was a result of the strong play by Diamond Jones. Jones collected 316 kills and 39 aces in 2016.

As a sophomore, Jones was the youngest player on the All-Metro team.

Two Ascension players made the Divisions III, IV, V All-Metro squad.

Ascension Catholic’s Carson Dunn made the first team with a great effort of 424 digs, 42 kills and 35 aces in her senior season.

Dunn was also named her district’s MVP as she helped lead the Lady Bulldogs to the second round of the playoffs.

Ascension Christian’s Emily Millet made the honorable mention squad. Millet was named her district’s Co-MVP as she helped lead the Lady Lions to a district title and a trip to the second round of the playoffs.