Duo lands on SS team

Blair Bigelow and Clay Knapp, a potent duo on the Laguna Beach High boys' volleyball team, have been named to the 2007 Amateur Athletic Foundation/All Southern Section Boys' Volleyball Coaches' Assn. Division II team.

Bigelow, a senior, was named to the first team.

Knapp, a junior, was a second-team selection.

Bigelow led the Breakers in kills with 235 and blocks (34.5) and was second in points (278) in a total of 29 matches played.

"Blair has been on the varsity for four years and he's just one of those guys that you really miss," Laguna Beach Coach Lance Stewart said. "He's one of my favorite players.

"As I've said before, he did everything you asked and never complained. He was great in all aspects, from practice to games. You just don't run into kids like that often and Clay Knapp is out of that same mold. For a kid playing out of position, he had a terrific year. It's great to get him back for one more year."

Bigelow was one of two middle blockers named to the first team. Knapp, who plays libero in club volleyball, was one of two setters on the second team.

Both players credit their teammates for their success.

"I'm really happy with the honor but surprised that I made first team," said Bigelow, who will undergo knee surgery.

Bigelow, who injured his left knee in Laguna's final match of the year, a CIF Southern Section Division II quarterfinal match at Dos Pueblos, is headed to Southern Methodist University in Dallas this fall.

"I think everyone of our team is really talented and any of them could have made All-CIF. Without them, I wouldn't be on the All-CIF team."

In the 29 matches he played, Knapp was second among Laguna players in digs (123), blocks (24) and serving accuracy (93.3%).

"It's nice to receive the recognition but really, it's about the team," Knapp said. "I'm more motivated for next year because I have big expectations for our team. It's my final year and I want to bring home a banner."

Division II

Player of the Year

Phil Bannan, Corona del Mar, setter, Sr.

Coach of the Year

Steve Conti, Corona del Mar

First TeamCarson Clark, opposite, Santa Barbara, Sr.

Alex Williams, outside hitter, Dos Pueblos, Sr.

Jeremy Casebeer, outside hitter, Santa Barbara, Sr.

Blaine Nielsen, outside hitter, Corona del Mar, Sr.

Jamey Ker, outside hitter, Valencia/Valencia, Sr.

Gus Ellis, Corona del Mar, middle blocker, Jr.

Sia Irilian, setter, Valencia/Valencia, Sr.

Blair Bigelow, middle blocker, Laguna Beach, Sr.Derrick Martinez, libero, Dos Pueblos, Jr.

Second TeamChris Ferrer, setter, Oxnard, Sr.

Ryan Scott, middle blocker, Arcadia, Sr.

Andy Abayan, setter, Santa Barbara, Jr.

Eric Kenyon, outside hitter, Dos Pueblos, Sr.

Steven Kempler, outside hitter, Saugus, Sr.

Ryan Makowski, middle blocker, Santa Ynez, Sr.

Jon Griffith, outside hitter, Valencia/Valencia, Jr.

Clay Knapp, setter, Laguna Beach, Jr.Spencer Brown, libero, Corona del Mar, Jr.

Third TeamCurtis Abram, outside hitter, San Luis Obispo, Sr.

Charles Kettering, middle blocker, Claremont, Sr.

Shane Yablonca, setter/outside hitter, El Modena, Sr.

Andrew Grimes, outside hitter, San Marcos, Soph.

Ryan Islas, opposite, Oxnard, Jr.

Kyle Matyas, opposite, Arcadia, Sr.

Austin D'Amore, outside hitter, Laguna Hills, Jr.

Daniel Wrage, outside hitter, Arroyo Grande, Sr.

Austin Melton, libero, Santa Barbara, Sr.

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