1 player to know on every Pac-12 women's volleyball team in 2023
Before the women's college volleyball season officially begins on Aug. 25, Pac-12.com is highlighting one student-athlete to know on all 12 teams.
Arizona — Sofía Maldonado Diaz, OH
Maldonado Diaz heads into her senior year as a top attacker in the Pac-12. Last year, she posted her second straight season with 300-plus kills, leading the Wildcats with 372. Maldonado Diaz should break the 1,000-kill mark in her career this season and has a decent chance to make Arizona’s top 10 list all-time. She also had 46 service aces last season, the third-most in the Pac-12.
Arizona State — Mary Shroll, Libero
Shroll has a lot to offer this season for the Sun Devils. The graduate transfer and Tempe native brings a lot of experience to Arizona State’s defense. She comes from LMU where she logged 884 career digs and helped the Lions make the NCAA Tournament last year. With the graduation of longtime libero Annika Larson-Nummer, who led ASU with 273 digs, Shroll should be an integral part of the 2023 team.
California — Paige Morningstar, Setter
California appears to have landed a foundational piece through the transfer portal with Morningstar. The former Louisville setter comes to Berkeley after two seasons with the Cardinals, including their 2021 national championship team. Morningstar saw limited action last season but was part of Louisville’s run to the title game. She was a top-tier recruit, earning a ton of awards during her time at North Allegheny in Pittsburgh including Gatorade Pennsylvania Girls Volleyball Player of the Year.
Colorado — Maya Tabron, OH
Maya Tabron is back in Boulder for her senior season, and we know what to expect from her. She has led the Buffaloes back-to-back seasons with 350-plus kills. She also improved her hitting percentage to .213 despite having more total attacks. Tabron also enters the season with 752 career kills, likely entering the program’s all-time top 20 list in the category.
Oregon — Mimi Colyer, OH
The reigning Pac-12 Freshman of the Year and AVCA National Freshman of the Year quickly made an impression in Eugene. She earned a record-breaking eight Pac-12 Freshman of the Week honors. Colyer led the Ducks with 533 kills, the second-most in the conference. She also shined on the biggest stage. Her 26 kills against Nebraska pushed the Ducks into the Elite Eight.
Colyer will need to continue a heavy load for Oregon after the graduation of All-Conference outside hitter Brooke Nuneviller, though she looks primed to be one of the brightest stars in the nation.
That winning moment🤯
— Oregon Volleyball (@OregonVB) November 20, 2022
Oregon State — Mychael Vernon, OH
After playing less than 100 sets combined in her first two seasons in Corvallis, Mychael Vernon had a breakout season last year. The former New York Gatorade Player of the Year led the Beavers with 353 kills. She had a career-high 22 kills in a win over Colorado. Vernon should likely continue to develop as a main piece of the Beavers’ attack.
Stanford — Kendall Kipp, OH
The Pac-12 Player of the Year is back for her fifth and final season. The multi-time All-American finished in the top five of the conference in kills per set (4.51), aces (43) and points per set (5.4). Kipp had 20 or more kills in nine contests last season. She also had a career-high 113 blocks in 2022. Kipp has the chance to be the first back-to-back Player of the Year in the conference since fellow Cardinal Kathryn Plummer did it in 2017 and 2018.
1⃣,0⃣0⃣0⃣ career kills for Kendall Kipp!
The Card have come back from 0-2 to force a fifth set at USC. 👀
— Pac-12 Network (@Pac12Network) November 10, 2022
UCLA — Desiree Becker, MB
New UCLA head coach Alfee Reft added Northwestern graduate transfer Desiree Becker to help solidify the Bruin defense. Becker led the Wildcats with 187 blocks last season and added 177 kills as well. Becker, Anna Dodson, Iman Ndiaye and Francesca Alupei should make for quite the front line. Becker was also coached by new assistant coach Amir Lugo-Rodriguez, who also comes to Westwood via Northwestern.
USC — Skylar Fields, OH
Fields had quite the debut season for the Women of Troy. The graduate student led USC and finished second in the entire nation with 598 kills. To open Pac-12 play, Fields had eight straight games of at least 22 kills. In total, she eclipsed the 20-kill mark 17 times.
WATCH LIVE 👀👇
— USC Women's Volleyball (@uscwomensvolley) November 6, 2022
Utah — Vanessa Ramirez, Libero
Ramirez was one of the best defensive specialists in 2022. The senior finished third in total digs and digs per set in the conference. Her 461 digs were the sixth-most in a single season in school history. Ramirez was the lone Ute to start every match last season, and has played all 293 sets in her career.
Washington — May Pertofsky, OH/MB
The Huskies graduated one of the most historic classes of all-time last season, as All-Americans Claire Hoffman, Marin Grote and Ella May Powell left their mark on the Washington program. First-year head coach Leslie Gabriel needed to find production to fill those voids. Insert May Pertofsky, who spent the last four years at Michigan. Pertosky can play inside and out, giving the Huskies much needed versatility. She had 798 kills and 273 blocks during her time in Ann Arbor.
Washington State — Magda Jehlarova, MB
There is not much Magda Jehlarova hasn’t accomplished in her career at Washington State. The former Pac-12 and AVCA Freshman of the Year will close out her career already having earned All-American honors three times and All-Conference every year. Last season, she finished second in blocks per set (1.48), while providing 290 kills. She only needs 16 blocks in her final go around in Pullman to become the program’s all-time leader.
Jehlarova with another big kill to tie things up in the fifth set!
Cougs now up to a 6-4 lead and on a 5-0 scoring run. Timeout UCLA.
— Cougar Volleyball (@WSUCougarVB) November 23, 2022