Kathryn Bell, North Hall: 29 assists, seven aces in wins over Chestatee and Eastside.
Amanda Daniel, Jefferson: 26 assists, four aces, three kills in wins against Rabun County and East Hall.
Nicolette Ashley, West Hall: 34 digs in wins over Lanier, Monroe Area and Habersham Central.
Jamie Nixon, Lakeview Academy: 16 kills in wins over Rabun County and Jackson County.
Kaitlyn Whelchel, Gainesville: 14 kills in win over East Jackson and a loss to Tallulah Falls.
Anna Walker, Gainesville: 14 kills in win over East Jackson and a loss to Tallulah Falls.
Kathryn McMillin, Flowery Branch: 25 kills in a loss to Rockdale County and wins over North Forsyth and Alcovy.
Alexis Love, Flowery Branch: 22 kills in a loss to Rockdale County and wins over North Forsyth and Alcovy.
Liz Darden, Buford: 88 digs in the Lady Wolves’ third-place finish at the Gwinnett County Championships.
Maggie Roper, Buford: 43 kills, 44 digs in the Lady Wolves’ third-place finish at the Gwinnett County Championships.
Angie Hughes, Union County: 15 strikeouts against Dawson County.
Stephanie Satterfield, White County: No-hitter against Chestatee; 5-for-6 with two home runs and six RBIs in wins over Chestatee and North Hall.
Callie McDonald, White County: Seven strikeouts in a win over North Hall.
Chelsie Thomas, Buford: 3-for-4 with two runs scored in a win over Greater Atlanta Christian.
Jordyn Whitfield, Jefferson: 4-for-4 with two doubles and two runs scored in win against East Jackson.
Ashley Neal, West Hall: Four RBIs in a win over Gainesville.
Cody Barger, North Hall: Finished first at the Hall County Championships.
Victoria Rogers, North Hall: Finished first at the Hall County Championships.
Josh Pendley, West Hall: Finished second at the Hall County Championships.
Ansley Lawson, North Hall: Finished second at the Hall County Championships.
Kenny Slavik, Flowery Branch: Finished third at the Aubrae Gunderson Invitational on Saturday in Conyers.
Wrestling and volleyball are two completely different sports with one commonality: West Hall’s Laykin Herford, who wrestles in the winter and is currently the volleyball team’s leader in assists.
“I like them both equally,” Herford said of the two sports. “Both sports you’re working toward one goal: winning.”
Herford has certainly had her hand in helping the Lady Spartans achieve that goal. In four games last week, all wins, the sophomore setter recorded 76 assists and 16 aces, which is pretty good seeing she’s in her first year at the position. For her efforts, Herford is The Times’ Athlete of the Week.
“She’s a spark plug,” West Hall coach Joe Nelson said of Herford. “She gets to a lot of things that other folks might not get to.”
That’s one of the reasons why Nelson pegged Herford as the replacement for Erica Grainger, whose 234 assists as a senior setter last year pale in comparison to Herford’s team-leading 378.
“I noticed potential in her last year,” Nelson said. “I needed to find a player that can take the pressure and is quick on their feet.”
He looked no further than Herford, who displayed her volleyball skills as a back row specialist as a freshman, and her quick feet during wrestling season.
With a new position to play, she spent countless hours over the summer practicing to live up to the expectations of a coach who “had a lot of confidence in me.”
“She had a learning curve, absolutely,” Nelson said. “But she’s progressing as I expected.
“She’s a year ahead of herself,” he added. “She’s gonna be tremendous over the next two years.”
And he’s not just talking about anchoring the middle of the floor for the Lady Spartans, who have won five of their last six matches. Herford is also one of the team’s best servers, evidenced by her 16 aces last week.
“She’s normally the first or second in the serve rotation,” Nelson said. “If you can’t serve or receive, you’re not going to be successful, and she’s definitely one of our better servers.”
Herford credits her success to finally being comfortable in her new position, which she admitted was a “bit rough” at the beginning. She doesn’t know when the turnaround actually occurred, but she said the Lady Spartans’ 2-1 loss to Buford on Sept. 2 led to a change within the team.
“After that game, our coach said that was the best we’ve played all year,” Herford said. “Since then, we’ve been getting so close as a team which helps because you need to know where everyone is going to be on the floor.
“We’ve been doing exceptional ever since.”
Since that loss to Buford, which boasts a 32-7 record, West Hall has only lost three times — to Chestatee, North Hall, and again to Buford — and its five wins were 2-0 sweeps.
“We’re starting to peak at the right time,” Nelson said. “We changed some of our passing and hitting strategies and Laykin’s adapted to all of those.”
If it were up to her, that will be the last change — at least position wise — Herford will have to make.
“I’d love to be a setter for the rest of my high school career,” Herford said. “If (coach Nelson) lets me.”
With the way she’s playing this year, it’s hard to imagine he wouldn’t.