Pedro named player of the year

By Observer staff December 21, 2012 12:14 pm

Powder, Imbler highlight all-state

They met in the district championship.

They faced off again in the state title game.

And they are linked together again in the 1A all-state selections. 

Powder Valley and Imbler were too evenly matched this past season to think of one without thinking about the other.

And it shows in the coaches’ selections for the all-state teams.

Both the Badgers and Panthers had three players earn all-state honors, the most of any 1A team in the state.

Jessica Pedro earned her second consecutive player of the year award after leading Powder Valley to a state championship.

Teammate Ali Abrego was voted to the first team along with Malia Mills of Imbler.

Imbler’s Jacey Teeter and Danika McIntosh were both selected to the second team, while Powder Valley’s Alexandra Colton was named an honorable mention.

Powder Valley’s Lasa Baxter was named the 1A coach of the year after the Lady Badgers went 24-2 this season.

Pedro was a dominant force again this season for the the Lady Badgers.

She finished the year with 388 kills and 227 digs excluding tournament play. Pedro added 275 serves and 34 blocks.

Abrego wasn’t far off with 312 kills and 171 digs.

“Coaching Ali Abrego and Jessica Pedro is an incredible opportunity that occurs rarely and is a gift,” Baxter said.  

“Having not one, but two equally powerful athletes dominating the court and presenting balance in the offensive attack as well as on defense is a rarity. I cannot say enough about the level of commitment over the past four years these two friends and teammates have given to the game of volleyball and their team. 

“They have been longtime team leaders who have set very high goals for themselves and their teammates.”

Colton was the orchestrator of the Badger offense, tallying 678 assists this season.

“Alexandra is equally as dynamic a setter as her two teammates are hitters.  She is incredibly quick, responsive, intuitive and anticipates game play well, which aids her in making sound setting decisions.  Colton bears a heavy load as she is responsible for driving the offensive attack of our team,” Baxter said.  

“She handles this pressure maturely with confidence and control.”

Mills finished with 247 kills this season and 195 digs for Imbler, while McIntosh had 114 kills and 26 total blocks.

Teeter had 528 assists and 170 digs for Imbler.

Teeter, Colton and Mills are all juniors who are expected back next season.

Pedro, Abrego and McIntosh are seniors.

This is also the second straight season that Baxter has taken the coach of the year honor.

The Lady Badgers have gone 70-8 over the last three seasons with three consecutive trips to the state title game.

“I cannot express enough my gratitude to these girls, their teammates and parents for the many years of effort and work that have been given in order for us to win the state championship,” Baxter said.  

“Their years of commitment to excellence and hard work paid off and in 2012 they’ve been able to taste the fruit of their labors.”

All of these selections were made through a ballot process, and all 1A volleyball coaches were given the opportunity to vote. Coaches could select 14 athletes from the ballot, which contained all eight 1A leagues.

1st Team Selections:

1A Player of the Year:  Jessica Pedro, Senior, North Powder

Ali Abrego, Senior, North Powder

Malia Mills, Junior, Imbler

Natalie Stone, Senior, St. Paul

Brooke Barnes, Senior, Perrydale

Emma Thompson, Senior, Hosanna Christian

Madison Purnell, Senior, Adrian

2nd Team Selections:

Brianne Joslyn, Junior, Yoncalla

Kaitlin Howard, Junior, Portland Lutheran

Jacey Teeter, Junior, Imbler

Abby Lewellen, Senior, City Christian

Danika McIntosh, Senior, Imbler

Kodye Harvey, Senior, Lowell

Taylor Darden, Sophomore, Dufur

Honorable Mention Selections:

Denisse Cruz, Senior, Portland Lutheran

Alexandra Colton, Junior, North Powder

Brittney Lyda, Senior, Condon/Wheeler/Arlington

Ellie Logan, Junior, Condon/Wheeler/Arlington

Heather Lass, Senior, Prospect

Nichole Orosco, Senior, Adrian

Hannah Steeves, Senior, Crane

Brooklyn Sandquist, Senior, Sherman


1A Coach of the Year: Lasa Baxter, North Powder