1992 All-Metro volleyball team The team

December 02, 1992

Catonsville's Karla Uttenreither was mistakenly identified in yesterday's editions featuring the All-Metro girls volleyball team.

* COACH OF THE YEAR: Bill Shook, Centennial -- Shook, who in nine years has built one of the state's premier programs, gets the nod for pushing the Eagles to overcome the weight of great expectations. Coming off an undefeated, state-title season and returning most of their starters, the Eagles were a safe bet to repeat. But they actually got better. After losing four games last year, Centennial went 66-3 this season, which included a 12-game sweep over six opponents in the North Caroline Bulldog tournament. Two of those opponents won state titles (Williamsport in 1A, Severna Park in 4A). The Eagles outscored their opponents by an average of 10 points a game. They allowed an opponent to reach double figures only 12 times in 69 games. They did it all while Shook used his bench in the third games of most of their sweeps. Shook has a career 161-24 record.

* PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Shannon Saltzman, Centennial -- Saltzman has been a dominant force for the last two years,

leading Centennial to state championships both seasons. The senior hitter was arguably the state's most intimidating presence at the net, where she recorded 152 kills in 61 games, an average of 2.5 per game, while committing only 58 hitting errors in 363 attempts. Saltzman also led the team with 52 point blocks. And she isn't a one-dimensional player -- she played every position on the floor, and that included fine defense in the back row. She also served 34 aces. Saltzman went out with a bang, producing a combined 25 kills in state-playoff victories over McDonough (Charles County) and Walter Johnson (Montgomery County).


* Abby Burk, Towson, Sr., hitter -- She emerged as a powerful hitter this year on an improved squad that made its first playoff appearance in five years. A 5-foot-10 hitter, Burk averaged more than four kills per game. She served just as powerfully with 81-percent accuracy and 53 aces. An all-around solid player, Burk turned the regional playoffs into her personal showcase. In a semifinal victory over Hammond, she had 15 kills and eight aces. In the final, she had 13 kills as the Generals (11-4) fell to eventual 2A state champ Mount Hebron, 16-14, 16-14, 15-13.

* Catherine Kirk, Severna Park, Sr., hitter -- Kirk wasn't just one of the top players in the county; she had few rivals in the state. The 5-foot-11 hitter is "the only reason that we're the state champions," said coach Tim Dunbar. She had 142 kills, including 14 in the state final, and a team-leading 58 blocks. She also led the team with a .685 hitting efficiency and was second with 59 aces.

* Jaime Pirotte, Severna Park, Sr., setter -- Dunbar hasn't hesitated to call Pirotte, who had 523 assists (9.02 a game), the best setter in the state. On a team full of prolific hitters -- the Falcons had 842 kills -- Pirotte "ran the show." The 5-foot-7 senior was an astute server, as well, with a team-leading 64 aces. "She has nice soft hands and she's very deceptive," Dunbar said. "She was able to effectively run the offense and get the ball to so many different hitters."

* Julie Scott, Broadneck, Sr., hitter -- The 5-foot-8 Anne Arundel County Player of the Year had 164 kills -- second best in the area -- during the regular season and 27 in two regional playoff games. She could hit the ball down and at incredible speeds from just about anywhere on the floor and served with a 90-percent efficiency. A two-time All-County player, Scott had 131 kills as a junior.

* Kai Scott, Mount Hebron, Sr., setter -- Howard County's premier setter, Scott wound up her second year as a starter by leading the Vikings to their third straight state championship. She led the county with 530 assists, including 48 in Hebron's five-game state-title victory over North Caroline. She also could be an offensive force, as her 83 kills attest. And Scott possessed one of the county's most wicked serves. After struggling with her serve early in the season, she came on to record a team-high 95 aces. In the season's last two weeks, she had 10 aces each in a regular-season victory over Atholton and a playoff victory over Loch Raven.

* Laura Taneyhill, Centennial, Sr., hitter -- At 5-foot-7, this Howard County co-Player of the Year relied on her three-step approach ++ and her 20-inch vertical leap to produce 149 kills -- including a 19-kill performance against Atholton -- in 394 hitting attempts. She made just 54 hitting errors. Taneyhill committed only four service errors in 168 attempts -- a 97.6-percent success rate -- with 23 aces.

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