University of Oklahoma head volleyball coach Santiago Restrepo has announced the signing of Jody Larson of Wichita, Kan., and Micaela Spann of Carrollton, Texas, to National Letters of Intent, Wednesday.
Nov. 14, 2012
Norman, Okla. - University of Oklahoma head volleyball coach Santiago Restrepo has announced the signing of Jody Larson of Wichita, Kan., and Micaela Spann of Carrollton, Texas, to National Letters of Intent, Wednesday.
"It was good to get these two - everyone was looking at them, so we are certainly lucky to have them here at Oklahoma," said Restrepo.
"What it creates and what it does for our program, with Jody and Micaela, is that it allows our team to be deeper in a lot of positions.
"We wanted to have the option of running a five-one or a six-two. We wanted to be able to put a lot of hitters out there and create more opportunities for our team with more points and more kills, and adding Jody and Micaela will allow us to do just that," explained Restrepo.
Larson, a setter, joins the Sooners as a PrepVolleyball.com Senior Ace selection.
Larson completed her high school career with 1,964 kills, 1,027 assists, 744 digs, 265 aces, 130 block assists and 77 block solos in 355 career games. For her efforts throughout her time at Maize-South, Larson was listed on Under Armour's High School All-America Watch List in September of 2012.
In the midst of her senior season, Larson was selected as Kansas' MaxPreps/AVCA Player of the Week for the week of Sept. 17-Sept. 23, 2012, after she led the Maize South Mavericks to two victories in one week, including a defeat of Kansas' No. 2 team, Valley Center, in three.
In a matter of two matches she totaled 41 kills, 15 digs, 12 assists and six blocks.
"Jody is going to give us the capabilities of perhaps running a six-two. She is an extremely talented athlete who is capable of running an offense and also being a very good attacker for the team," explained Restrepo. "She does both of those things pretty precisely and consistently."
A 2011 first team all-state honoree, Larson led Maize-South as a junior and senior captain in 2011 and 2012, respectively.
The 6'0" senior has been named league MVP, named to the first team all-league and selected to the Wichita Eagle/VarsityKansas.com All-Metro volleyball team three straight years (2010, 2011, 2012). In 2010 she was a member of the 4A All-State Tournament team and picked up her second consecutive second team all-state honors (2010, 2009).
In 2010 she was selected to the PrepVolleyball.com 2010 Soph 79, which recognized the best varsity playing high school sophomores in the country. The recognition came after she notched 532 kills, 323 assist, 202 digs and 87 aces for a team that reached the 4A Kansas State Tournament.
"I think that she is going to give us different ways to approach the game with her ability to attack at an extremely high level, as well as run the offense and the variety of sets," continued Restrepo.
"She has a pretty high IQ of the sport since she has been playing volleyball so long at a club level, in addition to her high school play - plus, her mom is a volleyball coach so that gives an extra edge of her volleyball knowledge."
Larson excelled on the softball diamond as well as the volleyball court, as she was selected to the 2012 Wichita Eagle/VarsityKansas.com all-metro softball team and named an all-metro shortstop in 2011. In back-to-back years, Larson was also chosen as an All-League pitcher (2010, 2011).
Outside of Maize South, Larson was a third place finisher at the 2012 USA Volleyball Girls' Junior National Championships in the 17 American, Gold Division as a member of the Wichita Power who finished with a 17-1 record. For her efforts, she was named to the 2012 National All-Tournament Team in the American Division.
Spann, a dual middle blocker and outside hitter, helped lead her team, the Hebron Hawks, to the 2012 regional quarterfinal against Coppell in November. Spann was also a member of the 2010 Hebron Texas 5A state championship team, 2011 district championship team and 2011 all-state honorable mention team.
"Micaela is an outstanding young student athlete with a very intense disposition on the court," explained Restrepo. "She is going to bring a lot of energy to the team.
"She is an extremely gifted blocker with long arms and big hands. She loves blocking, which is one thing we need to work on, and she is going to bring that dynamic to the table."
A two-time all-district team member (2011, 2012), Spann was also selected her Team and Court Captain for Hebron's 2012 season. In addition to her all-district selections, Spann has been named the Morning News Top 5 Area Blocker three-straight seasons (2010, 2011, 2012).
In her senior year, Spann led Hebron to the area championships, and was awarded Lone Star Player of the Week for her efforts.
As a senior, she hit .390 with 515 kills, 65 digs and 121 total blocks, including 58 block solos and 63 block assists. Before Spann entered postseason play, her 103 total blocks were the second-best output in Class 5A competition, and she led Hebron with 461 kills.
"She is also an extremely good jumper," Restrepo added. "She's very quick, especially on her arm swing, which gives her a variety of shots that are going to be needed for our team to be successful."
During her freshman and sophomore years, Spann was named Most Valuable Player and granted the School Athletic Leadership Award, respectively.
A three-year letterwinner for the volleyball team, Spann also spent two years on the field as a high jumper for the Hebron Hawks track & field team.
Outside of Hebron, Spann was a member of Skyline Juniors where she led the team in blocks in two seasons (2011, 2012) and was named Skyline's Top Club Blocker in 2012. The middle blocker/outside hitter also led the team in total hitting average in 2011.
Named a two-time Most Valuable Player (2009, 2012) and Most Improved Player (2008, 2011), Spann led the Skyline Juniors to a ninth-place finish at Junior Nationals in 2012 and 15th-place effort in 2011.