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Holbrook commits to Sinclair Community College

Shenandoah High School senior Hallie Holbrook signed a letter of intent to play volleyball for Sinclair College in Dayton, Ohio beginning this fall. Holbrook was a main cog on three straight Class 2A Sectional 42 championship teams for the Raiders and led the area in kills with 484 during her senior season in 2017. From left are father Howard Holbrook, mother Leslie Holbrook, Hallie Holbrook and SHS varsity volleyball Head Coach Josh MacIntyre.

By DAVID RISLEY - drisley@thecouriertimes.com

MIDDLETOWN — Given the volleyball resume Shenandoah High School senior Hallie Holbrook built over the four years of her high school career, she probably could have gone to a number of four-year colleges or universities.

Although Holbrook likes playing volleyball, she realizes that career comes first and she wants to get started with that as soon as possible. Now Holbrook has the best of both worlds, as she has committed to play volleyball for Sinclair Community College in Dayton, Ohio beginning this fall.

“I realize that I’m not going to play volleyball for a long time,” Holbrook said. “In fact, I considered going to college and not playing volleyball at all, just concentrate on academics, but then I learned about Sinclair College, visited it and loved the place.”

There were a couple other reasons Holbrook chose to go to Sinclair.

“They had the exact major I was looking for,” Holbrook explained. “I want to become an occupational therapy assistant, and they had a program specifically for that. I’ll be able to get my degree in two years and then go right to work if I want to. Also, Dayton is only about two hours or so away, my family is important to me, and I’ll be able to remain close and they’ll be able to come and see me play.”

Sinclair Community College is a two-year school located in downtown Dayton which offers more than 220 associate degrees and certification programs involving specialized career training and technical areas of study.

Sinclair’s athletic teams compete in the Ohio Community College Athletic Conference (OCCAC). Last season (2017), the Sinclair CC volleyball team finished with a record of 23-12 and was third in the OCCAC with an 11-5 record. It qualified to participate in the NJCAA volleyball regional in Port Huron, Michigan.

“I practiced with the team some,” Holbrook stated, “and there are some really good players on it. Most of them are back for this coming season. In talking with the coaches, they plan to use me as an outside or middle hitter, and also said I may be able to set some.”

Being a hitter is something Holbrook excelled in at Shenandoah. She made the C-T All-Area Volleyball First Team her sophomore through senior seasons, and didn’t do too badly as a freshman, either. She played all four years for Coach Josh MacIntyre.

Under MacIntyre, the Raiders played a really tough regular season schedule for a Class 2A school, took some lumps during it, but were ready when the IHSAA tournament rolled around.

In her freshman season of 2014, Holbrook posted 117 kills, 23 service aces, 29 digs, two assists, and 26 blocks. Shenandoah finished as runner-up to Muncie Burris in the sectional that year.

In Holbrook’s sophomore through senior seasons, the Raiders won a Class 2A sectional every year and Holbrook happened to lead the area in kills as a junior and senior.

As a sophomore in 2015, Holbrook had 384 kills (third in the area), 42 service aces, 110 digs, 17 assists, and 52 blocks. Avarie Powell of New Castle, a former Raider, was the C-T Player of the Year that season and Holbrook was third in the voting. Shenandoah lost at Union County in the regional.

In her junior season of 2016, Holbrook had 342 kills, 11 service aces, 77 digs, an assist, and 39 blocks. New Castle super-freshman Melani Shaffmaster beat out Holbrook for C-T Player of the Year, and the Raiders lost a spine-tingling regional match to visiting Hagerstown.

Holbrook had an outstanding senior season for Shenandoah last fall with 483 kills, 72 service aces, 288 digs, 73 assists, and 29 blocks. Those numbers would have been good enough for Player of the Year after many seasons, but New Castle’s Melani Shaffmaster, the National Sophomore of the Year, posted incredible numbers herself in helping to lead the Trojans to the Class 3A state championship and once again edged her out for C-T Player of the Year.

The regional format changed in 2017 and the Raiders lost to Covenant Christian in the regional semifinals.

“Making Second Team All-State my final three seasons is something I’ll really remember,” Holbrook indicated, “in addition to making First Team All-Area. We had some good times on the team, and it’s too bad we couldn’t advance farther in the state tournament.”

Holbrook has her summer plans all set.

“In the past, I played volleyball in the summer at Munciana,” Holbrook added. “Some of my friends and former teammates didn’t want to pay to play there this summer, but are still competing together elsewhere. I plan to work out with the high school team, too, this summer. The coach at Sinclair told me I’d get a chance to play a lot this season if I showed up in good volleyball shape, and that’s what I plan to do.”