Pacific athletes of the week
Kimberly LeeGirls volleyball
Last week: Led the Falcons to second place in the Korean-American Interscholastic Activities Conference Girls Division I Volleyball Tournament at Kelly Fitness & Sports Center, Camp Walker in Taegu. The Falcons finished 4-2, losing the championship match 25-17, 22-25, 29-27, 18-25, 17-15 to arch-rival Seoul Foreign.
During the tournament, Lee, a senior setter, posted 104 set assists, 54 defensive digs and was 72-for-83 serving with eight aces, and also had six kills in 16 attempts. She was chosen the tournament’s Best Setter and was accorded All-KAIAC honors.
“She is the cement that holds the whole thing together,” coach Denny Hilgar said. “She’s the most vocal, hardest-working player on the floor. She isn’t tops in all categories, just solid across the board. But it’s the intensity and leadership she brings to the court that is going to be hard to replace.”
Duri BalatBoys volleyball
Taegu American, South Korea
Last week: Played a central role in helping the Warriors to their first Korean-American Interscholastic Activities Conference tournament championship. Taegu American came from behind two sets to none to upend Seoul American 19-25, 25-27, 25-20, 25-14, 15-13 in the championship match Saturday at Taejon Christian International School.
Balat, a senior middle blocker, also was selected the tournament’s Most Valuable Player and Best Hitter and was chosen for the All-KAIAC team for the third time. The 3.0 GPA student was also the tournament’s Best Hitter last year.
“Duri has been the star, but has never acted as if he were more important than any other player,” coach Chance Wilson said of Balat, who attended two west-coast volleyball camps last summer, UCLA and Stanford Nike. “Duri has handled pressure all year. When we have been down or in need of something special, we’ve continually called on Duri. He’s a competitor and has taught his teammates fundamentals of the game. His contributions to our school will far outlast the volleyball season.”
— Selected by Stars and Stripes staff