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Eye on POY: Connecticut volleyball

The window on the Gatorade State Volleyball Player of the Year race is closing, and time is running out for student-athletes to state their POY case. The award recognizes not only athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field. Here are two top candidates who meet the basic award criteria as determined by our ESPNHS team that administers the program’s selection process.

Kyley Reed

Senior outside hitter, Rocky Hill (Conn.)

2011 Team record: 18-4

2011 Team standing: Won Class M state title

2011 Kills: 578

2011 Blocks: 31

2011 Digs: 460

2011 Aces: 133

2011 Assists: 16

Academics: B-plus average

Collegiate destination: Rice (verbal)

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: 2011 AVCA First Team All-American. Class M state tournament MVP; Three-time Class M First Team All-State

Marina Rose

Junior outside hitter, Coventry (Conn.)

2011 Team record: 22-0

2011 Team standing: Won Class S state title

2011 Kills: 302

2011 Blocks: 8

2011 Digs: 280

2011 Aces: 118

2011 Assists: 25

Academics: B average

Collegiate destination: HS junior

How she’s played herself into the State POY conversation: Two-time Class S State Tournament MVP. Two-time Class S First Team All-State selection.

Make no mistake, the Gatorade State Volleyball Player of the Year race isn’t over yet. Time remains for one standout student-athlete among thousands to rise to the top of our list. Here are some more of many who’ve been in the conversation throughout the 2011 campaign.

Abbey Doski: Newtown (Sandy Hook, Conn.) senior libero

Lauren Holt: Granby (Conn.) junior middle blocker

Kelsey Lewis: Tolland (Conn.) junior outside hitter

Emily Passman: East Lyme (Conn.) senior libero

Katie Stueber: Darien (Conn.) senior outside hitter/middle blocker

Think we're missing a deserving Gatorade State Player of the Year candidate in your state? Let us know via e-mail at ESPNHS_GPOY@ESPN.com or Twitter @ESPNHS_Awards.