Valparaiso volleyball head coach Carin Avery announced today that Katie Britton, Amy Groesbeck and Jenny Pokorny will join the Crusader program as freshmen for the 2008 season.
Britton, a 6’3” middle blocker from Marian H.S. in Mishawaka, Ind., was a four-year varsity starter for the Knights. A two-time All-State selection, Britton led Marian to the Class 3A state championship match as both a junior and a senior. She closed out her senior year with 344 kills and 66 blocks en route to her second straight First Team All-Northern Indiana Conference accolade. Britton was also a starter for the Indiana All-Star North team in 2007 and currently plays for the Network Volleyball Club.
“We are so excited about Katie and her potential here at Valpo,” said Crusader head coach Carin Avery. “She is a fantastic player that we were lucky enough to get away from several Big Ten programs. She was in high demand in the recruiting process because she moves extremely well for her size and can be a force at the net. This year, with some of our injuries, we had one of our smallest years in terms of size and it showed in our blocking statistics. We look to use her to help us in this category and give us some much-needed height. The great thing about Katie is that we can try her at several different positions on the floor.”
Groesbeck, a 6’1” right side hitter from Wheaton North H.S. in Wheaton, Ill., was a three-year varsity starter for the Falcons. Groesbeck earned All-Conference honors as a senior while helping guide Wheaton North to a regional championship berth. She was also named to three All-Tournament teams as a senior. Groesbeck has played club volleyball for Sports Performance for the last six years, and has been a part of teams that have finished among the top-ten nationally the last two years.
“Amy was a good get for us this year,” said Avery. “She plays for a high-level club program and has had lots of success. She has been trained at a high level and has some great skills. She is a big, physical player with a heavy arm, and she will also give us some much-needed height in the front row.”
Pokorny, a 5’10” setter out of Geneva H.S. in Geneva, Ill., ranks ninth in Illinois volleyball history and is the Vikings’ career record holder with 2,511 assists. The four-year starter led Geneva with 777 assists, 87 blocks and 38 service aces as a senior, and finished second on the team with 207 digs. The three-time All-Conference honoree helped guide the Vikings to the state quarterfinals as a junior. As a senior, Pokorny received All-Area honors from the Daily Herald and was a Second Team All-Area selection by the Chicago Sun-Times. She has played with the Kane County Juniors Club for the past four years.
“We are so excited to have Jenny join our program,” said Avery. “She is not only a great setter, but a great competitor. She has set for a higher-level club team her whole career and it really shows in her maturity. She is not afraid of any challenge and can handle lots of different situations. She has all the intangibles that we were looking for in our setter for this year's recruiting class. She also gives us a little bit of height at setter, which is something we haven’t had since I have been here.”