A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade State Volleyball Player of the Year selection process, resulting in this winner based on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2011 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.
For her 49 fellow Gatorade State Volleyball Player of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: Inky Ajanaku
School: Bishop Kelley (Tulsa, Okla.)
Position: Middle blocker
Athletic achievement: Ajanaku led the Comets to a 32-3 record and the Class 6A state title this past season. She recorded 537 kills, 127 blocks and 29 digs while posting a kill percentage of .634. The 2011 Class 6A State Tournament MVP and a 2011-12 American Volleyball Coaches Association Under Armour First Team All-American, Ajanaku also helped Bishop Kelley to Class 5A state titles from 2008 to 2010.
Academic excellence: Ajanaku has maintained a 4.17 weighted GPA in the classroom within a curriculum of predominantly advanced-placement courses.
Exemplary character: Ajanaku has volunteered locally on behalf of multiple community service initiatives in association with her church youth group.
“Inky Ajanaku is most definitely a standout player,” said Kody Engle, head coach of rival Jenks (Okla.). “She puts up one of the biggest blocks of anyone I have coached against. That, coupled with her versatility in attack, makes her a very dynamic player.”
Ajanaku has verbally committed to play volleyball on an athletic scholarship at Stanford University beginning in the fall of 2012.