October 18, 2016
October 15, 2016
October 8, 2016
With weather emergencies around the state, HCC finally got to suit up this Saturday as they hosted SFSC. *The Lady Hawks wish all those affected by the storm good health, safety, and a speedy return to normalcy.
In set 1, The Panthers played the Hawks tight, holding a commanding lead late in the game.
"They were playing very well," said Coach Larkin and we were high error-- that's a rough combo."
The Hawks roared back, fighting off multiple Panther set points and closed out the first set 27-25.
"That kind of confidence and resilience is special," continued Larkin. "That turned the tide for sure."
Shortly thereafter the Lady Hawks took commanding leads then comfortably closed out sets 2 and 3.
HCC was led by setter Brianna Stowell's balanced attacked. She dished out 18 kills to the MBs, 7 kills to the opposites, 13 kills to LSs, and added 3 kills of her own.
MB Sharonda Pickering posted 10 kills and energized the Hawks with 5 blocks.
Opposite Kirah Williams Shephard came off the bench hot, posting 5 kills in 7 attempts.
Overall the Hawks posted 12 total blocks and 29 digs in 3 sets.
"I was pleased and impressed with our defense today," explained Assistant John Babbitt. "When we are coordinated as group, it is a challenge for our opponents... plus Shar was a rock star today."
HCC has a critical week coming up as they face conference opponents at Polk Tuesday night, at SCF Thursday night, and hosts SPC on Saturday.
"What an exciting opportunity," said Larkin. "I love this time of year!"
September 30, 2016
The #6 Lady Hawks lose a heartbreaker at SPC. In their 3rd conference match, the Hawks seemed to have the Titans on the ropes in set 4, but let the opportunity slip away, eventually losing in 5.
"We lacked a killer instinct and they wanted it more," said Coach Larkin. "We missed 11 serves. That kind of showed our hesitancy and inability to execute."
One bright spot was Opp Madara Bajare who had 16 kills and a block.
"Madara has worked hard in practice and been patient," said Larkin. "I was very happy to see her hard work come to fruition."
HCC plays at CF on Saturday afternoon and returns to conference play next Thursday at Polk State.
"Conference matches require courage and an all in mentality. There are no do-overs. We look forward to testing ourselves versus a tough CF team and scratching and clawing our way through the coming conference tests."
HCC is 16-6, 2-1.
September 27, 2016
Congratulations Larra Bickelhaupt - NJCAA Region 8/FCSAA Defensive Player of the Week!
Led HCC to three straight-set victories in three matches played last week.
Averaged 5.1 digs over a total of nine sets and three matches; also averaged 0.3 assists, 0.6 service aces and 0.6 points per set.
Recorded double-figure digs in all three matches - 17 vs. Pasco-Hernando State, 12 vs. South Florida State and 17 vs. State College of Florida.
Also credited with four service aces in the Hawks' 3-0 win over State College of Florida.
September 25, 2016
The Lady Hawks move to 16-5, 2-0 in conference with a straight set win over SCF.
"It was a battle," said Coach Larkin. "We had to scratch and claw in sets 1 and 3. I was impressed with our poise against an aggressive team."
The Hawks were led by setter Briana Stowell's balanced 38 assists and 3 kills, libero Larra Bickelhaupt's 17 digs and 4 aces, MB Sharonda Pickering's 8 kills and 2.5 blocks, and OH Abbie O'Ferrell's 14 kills, 2aces, and 1 block. OH Petra Manderson also chipped in a double double with 10 kills and 10 digs.
Briana explained, "We weren't always perfect, but we were always competitive, and we supported each other very well today."
The Lady Hawks resume conference play on Thursday at SPC at 6pm.
September 22, 2016
The Lady Hawks volleyball team take down two opponents this week.
On Tuesday night, the Hawks traveled to Pasco Hernando State and won in straight sets.
"It's not often you beat Pasco in 3 at their place, so we feel very fortunate," said Larkin.
Abbie O'Ferrell and Kirah Williams-Shephard led the way with 11 pts each. Libero Larra Bickelhaupt anchored the defense with 17 digs.
On Thursday night in Avon Park (Yes, we are logging some miles!), the Lady Hawks swept South Florida State.
"There were some sick digs in that match," said Larkin. "Some of the rallies were really fun to watch."
HCC attacked .410 and posted 6 blocks. Freshman OH Petra Manderson had another solid outing posting 8 kills and hitting .500. Setter Briana Stowell added 6 kills on 8 attempts with no errors and 33 assists.
"We saw improvement in some areas of focus," continued Larkin. "It's very encouraging."
When asked about playing in her first conference match, freshman Opp Kirah said, "I was a little tense at first, but then it was just like playing back in Canada, only warmer."
"We have one conference win," added Abbie O'Ferrell. "Each one matters, so our focus is SCF now."
The Lady Hawks host SCF on Saturday at noon at te Dale Mabry Gymnasium.
The Hawks are 15-5, 1-0.
September 17, 2016
The Lady Hawks bounce back on Saturday sweeping a hot #16 Palm Beach State team that was riding a 11-1 record.
"We swept a good team this morning," said Larkin. "We had some fire and intensity. We're very different when we have that."
RS Kirah had 8 kills, and MBs Qui'yona and Sharonda combined to hit .500 and post 5 blocks.
In the following match, HCC met #11 Daytona for the 3rd time and gutted out a tough 5-set win.
OH Abbie had 19 points, RS Madara had 10.5, and Sharonda had 10 in the win. Setter Briana ran the show with 37 assists and added 4 kills.
"Daytona had great fighting spirit today. Mada came in and provided a lift with some big swings and some blocks."
The Lady Hawks posted 10.5 blocks in total.
"What a fun and wild ride," remarked Larkin. "My redshirt freshman Blake had to restrain me from tackling one of our players at one point."
When asked about it, Blake said, "Coach is a lot more nimble than he looks. He almost got by me. Luckily, I'm a yellow belt in Hapkido, so I had it covered."
The Lady Hawks move to 13-5. HCC faces Pasco State in Newport Richey on Tuesday night and is busy preparing for conference play.
"Our conference is excellent," said Coach Monica. "It'll take all 14 girls paddling in unison to move down the river to the promise land."
September 17, 2016
The Lady Hawks continue their roller coaster ride and take lumps on day 1 of the Polk State Invitational.
The day started with sweep by Miami Dade.
"We were never in this one," said Larkin. "We had trouble staying in system and lacked a little fight."
In match two, the Lady Hawks lost in 4 despite serving 7 aces and posting 6.5 blocks to go with a .380 hitting percentage. The Hawks had trouble going from defense to offense, however.
"Girls are pressing. We showed some fight at times, but each player needs to focus on her job and her job only. It was chaotic at times.
HCC got 12 kills by Sharonda, 15 from Abbie, 10 from Kirah, and 9 from Petra, but untimely errors had the Hawks playing from behind most of the night.
"It's all about continued growth and finding the motivation to put up a consistent effort and fighting spirit," added Larkin. "We'll continue to work hard on our areas of need."
On Saturday we face a hot Palm Beach squad and a talented Daytona State team.
The first match is at 12:30 at Polk State and the finale is at 5:30.
The Lady Hawks sit at 10-5.
September 14, 2016
The Lady Hawks bounce back with a straight set win at Daytona State 25-22, 26-24, 25-20.
"I think the team appreciated the privilege to play today," said Larkin, "and they enjoyed playing together."
Abbie O'Ferrell posted a double double with 14 kills and 10 digs. She added 2 blocks and 2 aces. Libero Larra Bickelhaupt posted 15 digs and 3 aces. Setter Briana Stowell added 30 assists, 2 aces, and 3 kills.
"We asked our sophomores to step up, and they all did," said Larkin. "Daytona State will humble you if you are not ready to play. Tonight we played the important points well, largely due to our sophomores' poise."
When asked how the team prepared for the midweek contest, Larra explained, "I'm not sure, but I am sure my teammates know that if we come out flat again, I will attack them like a pack of rabid wolverines after a hunger strike."
(Larra dropped the mic and walked off.)
The Lady Hawks move to 11-3 but must be ready face top competition at the Polk State Invitational.
The Hawks open with Miami Dade at 1:30 and Missouri State West Plains at 6:30 on Friday. The Hawks play Palm Beach at 12:30 and Daytona State at 5:30 on Saturday.
September 7, 2016
HCC Volleyball falls from 3rd to 5th in the NJCAA National Poll despite going 6-0 last week, including 5 on the road in Texas.
"We are who we are," explained Coach Larkin. "A favorable or unfavorable poll isn't going to change that. Our focus is getting better."
The Hawks extended their win streak to 7 after defeating Webber International JV in straight sets on Wednesday night.
The Lady Hawks recorded 10 blocks and 8 aces. The team was led by current state player of the week Abbie O'Ferrell who posted 9 kills, 2.5 blocks, 2 aces, and 10 digs.
"Abbie fills the stat sheet," said Coach Larkin as he dined on a delicious smoked turkey sandwich from Fat Boys BBQ on the way home. (*He washed it down with water because... well, you should.)
Madara Bajare also stepped up with 7 kills and a .460 hitting percentage.
On taking advantage of her start tonight, Madara noted, "I always prepare to be ready. Like the battery... you know... Eveready."
The Lady Hawks travel to Santa Fe College EARLY Saturday morning to face host Santa Fe at 10am and Eastern Florida State at noon.
The Hawks are currently 10-1.
September 7, 2016
Congrats to Sophomore OH Abigail O'Ferrell for being named this weeks FCSAA Player of the Week!
NJCAA Region 8/FCSAA Volleyball Player of the Week Abigail O’Ferrell, Hillsborough Sophomore – OH Labelle, Fla.
•Led Hillsborough to a perfect 6-0 record, including five wins at San Jacinto College’s Military Appreciation Classic
•Averaged 4.2 kills, 1.9 digs, 0.5 blocks and 4.9 points over 18 total sets
•Posted double-digit kills in her first four matches of the week, including 21 in a five-set win over NJCAA No. 13 Santa Fe, 19 in a straight-set win over No. 7 Blinn and 16 in a straight-set win over No. 14 Panola
September 5, 2016
HCC Volleyball went 5-0 on their recent trip to Houston, TX.
The Hawks started by defeating #7 Blinn in straight sets on Thursday night. They followed that up with two more wins, a sweep over previously unbeaten #14 Panola and a 4-set defeat of host San Jacinto.
On Saturday, the Lady Hawks took down North Central Texas in 4 sets and sweeping Northeastern from Colorado.
"I was very impressed by our sustained effort, resilience, and focus," said Larkin. "Our sophomore leaders Bri, Abbie, Larra, and Sharonda enforced our culture this weekend."
When asked if she was surprised by the team's performance, Sharonda said, "Not really. We know we have the potential to play consistently. We have a way to go, but this weekend we bonded and grew as a team."
Abbie O'Ferrell led all attackers this past week with 75 total kills.
"Our defense came alive in Texas," continued Larkin. "It was a missing piece, but we are making strides."
HCC travels to play Webber U. JV on Wednesday night at 6pm.
August 31, 2016
The #3 Lady Hawks outlast #13 the Santa Fe Saints to win in 5.
The Hawks were led by Abbie O'Ferrell's 21 kills and 4 aces.
"Abbie was a warrior tonight," said Larkin. "On a night when we were a bit out of sync, she bailed us out in critical moments. It was a fantastic battle versus the Saints."
Petra Manderson posted 12 kills and Qui'yona Salmon added 11.
The team hit .330 and passed a 2.4 but struggled from the service line committing 13 errors.
Setter Brianna Stowell recorded 55 assists in the win.
MB Qui'yona explained, "We have to stay aggressive. We haven't played our best yet. It's a long race. If we're going to be the tortoise, we just have to get a jet pack!"
The Hawks move to 4-1 and leave for Houston, Texas on Thursday (weather permitting).
August 27, 2016
The Lady Hawks split matches on day 2 of the Kickoff Classic to finish 3-1.
HCC started the day by sweeping Daytona State. The Hawks were led by Abbie O'Ferrell's 14 pts, Sharonda Pickering's 10 pts, and Kirah Shepard-Williams 9.5 pts. Brianna Stowell added 7.5.
"We had a nice flow going," said Coach Larkin. "Bri ran a balanced offense, and we played some feisty defense in spurts."
The afternoon wasn't as kind to the Lady Hawks as they were swept by #10 CF.
"They were ready to battle, and we weren't," added Larkin. "A bad loss like that can inspire practice energy. We'll use what we learned and continue to grow."
When asked about the weekend as a whole, sophomore libero Larra Bickelhaupt said, "It's a whole lot cooler to control tempo than to chase it. We have to stop singing it and start bringing it."
The Lady Hawks will face #13 Santa Fe on Tuesday night at HCC at 6pm. Come cheer on your Lady Hawks!
August 27, 2016
The #3 Lady Hawks started the season by going 2-0 Friday at the HCC kickoff classic.
"We are a work in progress," explained Coach Larkin, "but everyday we learn valuable lessons."
In the first match versus local rival SPC, the Lady Hawks prevailed 22-25, 25-23, 25-19, 25-18. HCC was led by Abbie O'Ferrell's double double of 17 kills and 12 digs. The team posted 13.5 blocks with Sharonda Pickering leading the way with 3.5.
"We started slow, but finished strong," said Larkin. "I was happy to see the blocking come around."
In match 2, HCC defeated #11 Indian River State 21-25, 25-16, 25-19, 28-26. The Hawks posted 13 more blocks. Yali Li and Sharonda Pickering each had 3.5. Abbie again led all point scorers with 18 kills.
"After coming out flat, we picked it up again. Many players contributed while we searched for a competitive lineup," said Larkin. "Closing out tight last set showed some character."
Next up is Daytona State, who knocked off #6 Polk State, and #10 CF.
When asked if the team is excited and ready for day 2, Chinese MB Yali Li smiled and said, "Um, Yes!"
May 23, 2016
The Lady Hawks would like to congratulate Abbie O'Ferrell who has decided to play for Coach Michelle Piantadosi and Eckerd College in 2017. We're so proud of you!
"Abbie's intangibles are off the charts," said Coach Larkin. "She and Eckerd are an excellent fit, and I know both will benefit from the relationship."
Abbie and the Lady Hawks begin the 2016 campaign on August 1st. Competition begins at the Lady Hawk Invitational on Friday August 26th.
May 22, 2016
Congratulations to Cherlie Adorno DeJesus who was named the Suncoast Conference Female Scholar Athlete. Way to go. We're proud of you!
May 18, 2016
Shayna Filippelli commits to the Lewis University Flyers. We are so proud of you and excited to watch you at the next level.
Shayna is the final sophomore to commit to a 4-year university. Good luck, Ladies. Work hard and enjoy the experience!
May 6, 2016
HCC Volleyball would like to welcome Latvian 6'2" Opp/MB Madara Bajare to the Lady Hawks family. Madara comes to us from CF after playing one season there.
"Madara is a great person who will fit in nicely," said Larkin. "She has a heavy arm and a high volleyball IQ as well as a desire to improve. We are excited to have her."
March 31, 2016
Congratulations to All-American Libero Cherlie Adorno Dejesus who committed to the Tennessee State University Tigers. We are so proud of you and can't wait to watch you compete at the next level!
March 24, 2016
HCC Volleyball was very honored to be invited to the Tampa City Council Meeting to receive a commendation. We are so proud of our student athletes!
March 17, 2016
HCC would like to welcome Blake Evans from Chicago Elite Volleyball Club to the Hawks family. Blake is a hard working and athletic MB with an infectious personality.
"Blake will spend her first year training to adjust to the college game. We love her upside, and she projects to be a high potential transfer after her 2018 season," said Larkin.
Blake comes to us from the same volleyball club as HCC standout Dominique Mason. The Chicago ties remain strong.
March 16, 2016
HCC is pleased to announce the commitment of Lucia Alvarez Cartamil of Gijon, Spain. Lucia is a setter with vast experience and a tremendous drive to grow.
March 2, 2016
Congratulations to Dominique Mason who has committed to Seton Hall University. We are so proud of you!
January 29, 2016
Congrats to Erika Zembyla who has committed to UAB! We are so proud of you!
January 14, 2016
It's official. Petra is signed! Welcome to the family!
January 10, 2016
The Lady Hawks are excited to announce the signing of Kirah Williams-Shephard from Scarborough Ontario. Kirah is a 6' Opp who played for L'Amoreaux Collegiate Institute and the Toronto Diamonds Volleyball Club. She has captained her school to a city championship and has earned medals in national various tournaments.
"Kirah has the potential to be a huge point scorer for us at the opposite position," said Larkin. "She is explosive and terminal and has a high ceiling. We can't wait to watch her grow into a collegiate player during her time here."
Kirah has also earned the Ontario Volleyball Award of Excellence. Kirah is the 5th player signed to the 2016 class.
"I love our balance our returning experience and explosive newcomers," said Larkin. "We are working hard to address all needs, and Kirah is one more piece to the puzzle. We all have high expectations for 2016 and are ready to work hard."
January 2, 2016
December 16, 2015
The Lady Hawks would like to welcome 5'9" OH Petra Manderson from Burnside High School in Canterbury, New Zealand. Petra is a multi-sport athlete who plays with the New Zealand National Team.
"Petra brings a great deal of experience and is extremely self-motivated," remarked Coach Larkin. "She is an explosive athlete with a nice balance of seriousness that the coaches will like and fun-loving spirit that her teammates will like. We're excited to work with her."
Petra will be the second New Zealand national to play for the Hawks (Andrea Tauai '13).
Welcome to the family, Petra!
December 16, 2015
Congratulations to Rachell Vargas-Comme who has accepted a scholarship to play for the University of Mary. We are so proud of you!!!
December 9, 2015
The AVCA announced its list for 2-Year College All-Americans. Libero Cherlie Adorno was also named to this impressive group. Way to go, Cherlie!
December 8, 2015
Congratulations to Associate Head Coach Monica Medvid for being named AVCA National Assistant Coach of the Year! It is Monica's second time to win the award. We are all so proud of you!
December 3, 2015
Congratulations to Cherlie Adorno-DeJesus who was named NJCAA 2nd Team All-American! It is HCC's 7th All-American since 2006 and the first HCC Libero to win the honor.
December 1, 2015
CONGRATULATIONS COACH LARKIN!!
AVCA Two-Year College Northeast/Southeast Region Coach of the Year
Gary Larkin, Hillsborough Community College
2015 Record: 34-6
Thirteenth season as the head coach of Hillsborough...Finished the NJCAA National Tournament with a third-place finish...FCSAA State and Suncoast Conference Champions...Larkin won the FCSAA State and Suncoast Conference Coach of the Year...Earned a five seed in the NJCAA National Division I Tournament...This marks his fourth AVCA Region Coach of the Year honor (2008, 2012, 2013).
November 30, 2015
The Lady Hawks will welcome two new players for the 2016 season this spring semester. Qui'yona Salmon is a 6'2" MB from Florida.
"Q has tremendous upside athletically," said Larkin. "It will be nice to acclimate her to the college game this spring."
In addition, HCC welcomes 6'2" MB Yali Li from China.
"Reporting early will greatly help Yali with her academics," said Larkin. "She brings solid fundamentals and excellent work ethic to our roster."
The Lady Hawks are eagerly preparing to make another run at a national championship in 2016. Stay tuned!
November 24, 2015
The Lady Hawks returned from Casper with the Bronze trophy and an impressive 3rd place finish.
HCC left Tampa with lots of support from Fox 13, Channel 10, the St. Pete Times, and all their family, friends, and fans. The pressure was on to win matches at the 2015 National Championships.
Upon arrival in Casper, Wyoming, the Florida girls quickly acclimated to the altitude, snow, wind, and cold.
"I didn't want to go outdoors. Literally," explained British Virgin Islands resident, Sharonda Pickering.
The #5 seeded Hawks first met #12 Wallace State.
"To be honest, I was most nervous before this match," said Larkin. "Getting off on the right foot is tremendously important at this event."
It was Coach Larkin's 7th time to take an HCC team to the national championships, and he didn't need to worry. The Lady Hawks jumped all over Wallace State, sweeping them in straight sets.
HCC was led by freshman setter Briana Stowell who posted 30 assists, 8 kills, and 4 aces.
In round 2, HCC faced #4 seed Iowa Western. It was a quarterfinal rematch as HCC faced The Reivers in 2013. The Lady Hawks showed everyone they were for real by surprising IWCC with another straight set sweep. The Hawks were led by Abigail O'Ferrell's double double (12 kills, 12 digs) and Erika Zembyla's 13 kills. Libero Cherlie Adorno also posted over 7 digs per set in the contest.
"We were really good," remarked Larkin. "We hit for a higher percentage, blocked for more points, and dug more balls. It was a total team effort."
When asked about the result, sophomore OH Dominique Mason said, "It feels really good to be respected. Everybody is good here, and we showed we belong. We played with one heartbeat today. It was so much fun."
In the semis, the Lady Hawks were to face tourney favorite #1 seed College of Southern Idaho, winners of 10 national championships
HCC stumbled in this round, struggling to get in rhythm or slow the nation's best middle attack. HCC lost to the eventual champion in 3 sets.
"We were a little wide-eyed," said Larkin. "We had trouble siding out and let them dictate tempo."
With an opportunity to rebound, the Lady Hawks faced local favorite #3 seed Northwest from Wyoming.
"We knew we had to quiet the crowd," said Erika Zembyla. "They had a bunch of fans traveling with them. Midway through the match, I could only hear Jason and Lisa (Larkin)."
HCC played the Trappers even in the first set but failed to put them away, narrowly losing 23-25. Everything changed in set 2.
"It was HCC volleyball from set 2 on," explained Larkin. "We defended extremely well and had a balanced attack. Erika was nearly perfect, and players took care of their individual responsibilities."
HCC only allowed 13, 17, and 16 points respectively to one of the best teams in the nation in their home state. The Lady Hawks had 3 players in double digit kills (Mason 16, Zembyla 15, O'Ferrell 11). HCC also out-blocked Northwest 8 to 4 and out-hit their opponent .348 to .167.
Sophomore Captain Adorno said, "I am just so proud of this team and to be a Hawk right now. This is why I came here. To play at this level with a team that feels like a family is just amazing."
HCC took home the Bronze and for the first time in school history placed two players on the prestigious All-tournament team (Cherlie Adorno and Erika Zembyla).
"What a way to end," said Larkin. "This group is so close and worked so hard. I am so proud of how they represented our program. Anyone who saw us in August knows that these players were relentless in their drive to improve and succeed. You don't easily find the character that these girls have."
HCC finished 34-6 and matched the programs best national finish. In 2015, the Lady Hawks won a conference championship, a district championship, a state championship, and the bronze at the national championship.
When asked what's next, Stowell said, "I'm going to Disney World. Seriously. I'm from Orlando, so I'm going to Disney World."
November 22, 2015
Laura Rojas officially signs with the Lady Hawks! Whoop whoop!
November 18, 2015
Check out the Lady Hawks on Channel 10 News!! AWESOME!!
November 9, 2015
Co-NJCAA Region 8/FCSAA Volleyball Player of the Week Abigail O’Ferrell, Hillsborough
Freshman – OH
·Led Hillsborough to the NJCAA District/FCSAA State Championship and was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player ·Averaged 4.3 kills and 3.6 digs in 11 total sets over three matches
·Posted double-doubles vs. Palm Beach State (18 kills, 18 digs) and Polk State (10 kills, 14 digs)
Had a .321 hitting percentage
November 8, 2015
The Lady Hawks are FCSAA State Champions!
The #8 Lady Hawks defeated #9 Polk State in straight sets. Freshman Abbie O'Ferrell was named the Tournament's Most Outstanding Player. Sophomores Cherlie Adorno and Erika Zembyla were also named to the All-State Tournament Team. Coach Larkin was named the Mary Andrews FCSAA Coach of the Year.
"We felt pretty good about the match-up," said Coach Larkin. "The programs know each other well and have a fun and spirited rivalry. The players are all friendly, so Polk v. HCC matches often bring out the best in the players."
Abbie O'Ferrell and Erika Zembyla both posted double doubles. Dominique Mason added double digit kills. Iris Sietsma also came alive, adding 11 kills out of the MB position.
"Our setter Briana [Stowell] had a true bounce back match," said Larkin. "I was so proud of her. She felt she had much more in her after yesterday's match. On a very big stage today, she showed us all."
The Hawks serve reception was strong today as well.
"I can't say enough about Cherlie, Abbie, and Erika anchoring our serve receive," continued Larkin. "It is a very difficult skill, and they showed great poise and skill against a good serving team."
When asked how the Assistant Coaches reacted after the big win, Larra said, "John was 'calm,' and Monica made T-shirts."
The Lady Hawks moved to 31-5, 7-1 and have earned a trip to Casper Wyoming. The NJCAA National Championships begin November 19th.
November 7, 2015
The Lady Hawks punched their ticket to the NJCAA National Championships! HCC defeated Palm Beach State in 5 sets in the Gulf District Final.
"Palm Beach played fearless," said Larkin. "We got past a tough opponent today. I love that when our backs are against the wall, we never quit or surrender. Our players have such amazing character."
When HCC was good they were good, controlling sets 1 and 4 easily. Perhaps it was the magnitude of the moment, but the Lady Hawks played a little careful in sets 2 and 3.
Erika Zembyla noted, "We may have been overthinking it a bit out there. Sometimes you just have to let it fly. It was cool we picked each other up when we needed it."
In the pivotal set 5, HCC found themselves down 8-11. That was when Sharonda Pickering changed the momentum with a few pivotal blocks.
"My girl Sharonda brought the pain," said Sophomore Shayna Fillipelli. "She showed up when we needed her most."
The Lady Hawks were led by Abbie O'Ferrell's 18 kills and 18 digs and Dominique Mason's 18 kills.
HCC plays conference foe Polk State for the FCSAA State Championship on Sunday. Both schools will represent Region 8 in Casper, WY regardless of the outcome.
"What a great day for the Suncoast Conference," said Larkin. "Polk and HCC played tough schedules and worked hard to get here. Being on top of such a competitive region is an honor. We're happy for both programs."
Good luck tomorrow, ladies, and Go Hawks!!
November 6, 2015
The Lady Hawks swept Daytona state on Friday to advance to the final four. HCC will face Palm Beach State at 10am on Saturday.
"Daytona is a difficult match-up for us," said Larkin. "We are pleased to advance. We have great respect for them."
HCC jumped out to a commanding two-set lead but found themselves down 24-21 in set three. After an interesting call to give the Falcons match point and a subsequent lively exchange of ideas, the Hawks found themselves staring at a fourth set. HCC, however, made a furious rally winning 5 points in a row to win 26-24.
"It showed tremendous character," remarked Larkin.
When asked about the comeback in set 3, Abbie O'Ferrell said, "Funny things happen in volleyball. We know anything is possible and just keep fighting to the final whistle."
HCC was led by Abbie O'Ferrell's 19 kills and Erika Zembyla's 14 kills. Briana Stowell dished out 41 assists, and Cherlie Adorno paced the defense with 14 digs.
HCC moved to 29-5, 7-1 on the season.
November 4, 2015
Check out the article from Fox News. Go Hawks!!
October 31, 2015
The Lady Hawks finished the regular season in style by sweeping Florida State College at Jacksonville and Florida College.
OH Abbie O'Ferrell led the way with 12 kills and a hitting percentage of .460 is the first match and 12 kills and hitting percentage of .550 in the second match. She also posted 16 digs and 3 aces on the day.
"Abbie was outstanding today," said Coach Larkin. "She had 1 error on 46 total attempts. She has to clean up broken plays and hit a lot of out of system balls for us, so that is pretty remarkable."
When asked about her performance, Abbie said, "It felt good. Our team had a little rhythm going. I was seeing the court well and comfortable changing speeds. We especially needed that against a tough Florida College defense."
Abbie received a 2.35 to go with her recorded stats.
"In many ways, Abbie is the unsung hero this year," explained Larkin. "She quietly anchors our serve receive with Cherlie and Erika. She is second on the team in digs and reads plays before they occur. She is one of our top servers and third on the team in kills. She does it all."
Friday was also the last official day that Shayna, Cherlie, Erika, Dom, and Rachell will take the court at the Dale Mabry Gym.
Shayna commented, "This team is so close. I guess it was a little sad today, but we are super excited about States next week."
HCC travels to Pensacola on Wednesday and after a banquet on Thursday begins play on Friday. The first opponent is Daytona State.
HCC Volleyball would like to thank Assistant Coach and grill master John as well as all the friends and family who contributed to our pot luck lunch between matches. We loved sharing the day with you all, and the food was delicious. We will see you all in Pensacola!
HCC is 28-5, 7-1.
October 28, 2015
Congratulations to Cherlie Adorno, Dominique Mason, Erika Zembyla, and Briana Stowell who were selected to the Suncoast Conference All-conference First Team.
In addition, congratulations to Abbie O'Ferrell and Iris Sietsma who were selected to the Suncoast Conference All-conference Second Team.
We're proud of you all!
Head Coach Gary Larkin was named Suncoast Conference Coach of the Year. It is his 5th time to earn the honor.
October 27, 2015
HCC moved up to 1st in the Region 8 / FCSAA Poll. Last week the Lady Hawks were 2nd. The NJCAA National Poll comes out on Wednesday.
Congratulations to Dominique Mason for earning Player of the Week!
NJCAA Region 8/FCSAA Volleyball Player of the Week Dominique Mason, Hillsborough
Sophomore – Outside Hitter Chicago, Ill.
Helped Hillsborough to a 4-0 week, a pair of wins over nationally-ranked opponents and the Suncoast Conference Championship
Averaged 3.4 kills, 1.7 digs, 0.1 service aces and 3.7 points per set (13 total sets) while tallying a .265 hitting percentage
Three consecutive double-digit matches in kills – beginning with 14 (and three digs) vs. Central Florida (October 19). Added 12 kills and six digs in a 3-0 win over Polk State (October 22) and 13 kills and six digs vs. South Florida State one day later to clinch the SuCon Championship
Currently fourth in Region 8 in kills (362) and 11th in kills/set (3.12)
The Lady Hawks defeat Broward in 3 sets to go 26-5 on the season.
"We hit .410 as a team, so we were able to put them on their heels," said Coach Babbitt.
The Lady Hawks begin preparations for the state tournament immediately. They will see Daytona State in Round 1.
"We're so excited to get after it in training," said Coach Medvid. "The post-season is an opportunity."
HCC will host Florida College at Jacksonville and Florida College on Friday with play starting at noon. Rumor is there might be some delicious food in between matches...
October 23, 2015
The Lady Hawks sweep South Florida State and clinch the Suncoast Conference Championship! HCC entered the match needing to defeat SFSC and to get a little help from SCF. With a potential tie for first place in conference the 6-1 Lady Hawks anticipated a playoff game versus 6-1 Polk State next Tuesday. Luckily for the Hawks, the Eagles lost a 5-set thriller to the Manatees, leaving the Hawks in sole possession of first place.
"The level of play in our conference is outstanding," said Larkin. "Any of our conference rivals can win on any given night. We had our hands full, and I'm sure it was a battle in Bradenton."
After a ceremonial first serve by sophomore Rachell Vargas-Comme, the Lady Hawks jumped out to a lead early. SFSC battled all the way back before losing a close first set 23-25. In set 2, HCC took control and won easily 25-11. In set 3, after some back and forth play, the Lady Hawks were able to prevail 25-18.
"Sophomore Night is always a challenge as routines are broken, and distractions occur," said Larkin. "I thought our team handled it well. Our sophomores led us out tonight. Sophomore setter Shayna Filippelli made the most of her start, creating a nice offensive flow. She is a local product, so she had a nice fan club. At one point, it sounded like a Taylor Swift concert."
Shayna posted 30 assists and 2 kills. Dominique Mason posted 13 kills, and Iris Sietsma added 9 kills and 3 blocks.
When asked if she was satisfied with the team's performance during conference play, Erika Zembyla commented, "Yes, of course! We are so pleased to hang another banner and leave a legacy. And we always want to play hard for our fans. We are so happy we could clinch tonight at home for them and for all those watching online. ...Hi, Mom!"
After anchoring the team's serve receive and defense for two years and being nationally ranked throughout that time, libero Cherlie Adorno discussed the future: "Well, we have a match tomorrow, so that is most important. After that, we will get back to work and train hard. We have not met all our goals yet."
"Hard work pays off, " said Larkin. "I grow more impressed by our players every day, and I am honored to be a part of the State Championship Tournament."
Perhaps Superfan and Academic Advisor Jason Wilson best summed up the Hawks' fortunate night: "Woot, woot!"
HCC is currently 25-5, 7-1. The team travels to Daytona State where they will face Broward on a neutral court.
October 22, 2015
#9 HCC swept #5 Polk State in 3 in Lakeland to earn a share of the conference lead.
"It was a lot closer than the scores suggest," said Larkin. "Their program is excellent, and the players all know each other. It is always a battle, not to mention they probably have the state player of the year on the roster."
HCC took the first set 25-15, but the Eagles fought back in set 2 and posted a 5 point lead late. The Hawks never quit, however, and tied it at 24, eventually prevailing 27-25. The Hawks regained control in set 3 and completed the sweep 25-18.
"We are playing much better as a team," said Dominique Mason. "We have work to do, but we are at our best when we trust and rely on each other."
Abbie O'Ferrell posted another double double, 14 kills and 15 digs. Libero Cherlie Adorno posted 20 digs and received well. Dominique Mason, Iris Sietsma, and Erika Zembyla rounded out a balanced attack with 12, 9, and 8 kills respectively.
"We didn't block a ton of balls [6 total], but Sharonda [Pickering] came up with two big ones at the end," added Larkin.
Come join the Lady Hawks as they celebrate Sophomore Night tomorrow at 6pm at the Dale Mabry Gym.
HCC is 24-5, 6-1.
October 19, 2015
The #9 Lady Hawks win a thriller on the road at #10 Central Florida!
After dropping a lopsided first set, the Hawks repaid the favor by winning set 2 easily. Set 3 went to CF as they stepped up their backcourt defense, and then set 4 went to the Hawks on the back of 7 blocks.
"Both teams played tough defense tonight," said Larkin. "Kills were hard to come by at times."
In set 5, the teams traded points, but the Lady Hawks went up 8-7 at the changeover. Then HCC never looked back, finishing the set and the match, 15-9.
"It was a funky match tonight," reflected Larkin. "We all rode the same rollercoaster. CF at home is a tough test. I wanted our players to experience the pressure."
Abbie O'Ferrell recorded another double double with 13 kills and 11 digs. Dominique Mason added 14 kills and Erika Zembyla added 10 kills.
HCC also had a program record 17 blocks, led by Iris Sietsma's 5 and Sharonda Pickering's 5.5. The team passed a 2.5 in serve receive, and Cherlie Adorno led all players with 30 digs.
"Blocking is key for us," said Larkin. "When we block, we win. On the flip side, when we pass a 2.5, I expect our offense to be more creative and our attackers to be more terminal. We sometimes have to make two or three digs before we end the point."
The Lady Hawks hit .250 for the match.
"That's a little below our team average but CF's defense had something to do with that," said Larkin.
Freshman Arielle Allen, who played a DS role, was asked how it felt to play in a hostile environment on the road.
"It was pretty cool." she said smiling.
"It was a lot like playing at home except... we had to take a bus there... their fans were in the stands... we had to use the visitor locker room... and we were "Guest" on the scoreboard. Other than that it was pretty much the same," quipped Arielle.
The Lady Hawks travel to Polk State Thursday night for a critical conference match at 6:00.
Also mark your calendars for Sophomore Night Friday at 6pm at the Dale Mabry Gymnasium.
HCC moves to 23-5, 5-1.
October 16, 2015
The Lady Hawks win a 7th in a row and punch their ticket to the FCSAA State Tournament in Pensacola!
HCC jumped all over SCF in sets 1 and 2, winning 25-12, 25-4. The Manatees didn't quit however and turned the tables in set 3. After falling well behind, the Hawks battled all the way back to make a game of it, finally losing 24-26.
"SCF showed great character as expected," said Larkin. "Our team went off script and lost its way for a while, but I was proud of the way our players fought back. We were in position to steal set 3 and fell just short."
In set 4, both teams battled back and forth. In the end, HCC made a few more plays and prevailed 25-23. Dominique Mason had a strong match with 21 kills and a block.
"There was a lot riding on the match tonight," said Larkin. "We were playing a rival on the road with a chance to clinch a post-season berth. Dom stepped up at the right time, and I'm so happy for those girls."
The Lady Hawks served 8 aces against 1 error for the match.
When asked how it feels to earn a trip to states, Dominique replied, "Amazing. A lot of hard work went into getting to this point. A lot of hard work will be needed to take the next step. Our best is yet to come."
On Monday, the Lady Hawks travel to Ocala to face CF and then conclude conference play with Thursday and Friday matches.
HCC is 22-5, 5-1.
October 14, 2015
Congratulations to Briana Stowell for being named NJCAA Volleyball Player of the Week!
October 14, 2015
HCC Volleyball alumnus Brittany Wilson Wade made the St. Pete Times today as she prepares Durant High School for the district tournament. Way to go, Britt!
October 13, 2015
The Lady Hawks win their 21st! HCC got revenge against the Quistas, sweeping them Tuesday night. In September, PHSC fought back from 0-2 to push the match to a 5th set before falling to the Lady Hawks in 5. This time around, the Lady Hawks took care of business and closed the match confidently.
HCC was led by Abbie O'Ferrell's double double, posting 14 kills and 11 digs. Abbie also added a block and an ace.
"Abbie 3-option passed some really tough serves tonight and hit .620," said Larkin. "She's playing at a whole different level."
HCC also got 11 kills from Dominique Mason who hit .500. Middle Blockers Rachell Vargas and Iris Sietsma also hit for high percentages and contributed 10 total kills.
"Our freshman setter Briana is starting to run the offense the way we envision it," continued Larkin. "I think she is playing with confidence now, and her teammates sense it."
Briana Stowell's performance was well-timed as she was just named NJCAA National Player of the Week.
Libero Cherlie Adorno led the Lady Hawks on defense with 16 digs.
Holding a quality opponent like the Lady Conquistadors to an .096 hitting percentage is no easy feat. When asked what changed from the first PHSC match to the second, OH Abbie O'Ferrell explained, "We don't hope we'll play well anymore; we expect it."
After playing the first match with flu symptoms and needing to see the trainer before boarding the bus in September, Abbie said that this match was gratifying. "It felt good to play on live legs," she said. "Last time I might as well have been playing in quicksand or oatmeal or marshmallow fluff or grits or mashed potatoes or... well you get the picture."
The Lady Hawks next play at SCF on Friday at 7pm in a crucial conference match.
HCC is 21-5, 4-1.
October 11, 2015
Congrats to Erika Zembyla who earned AVSR Global's Player of the Week. Way to go!
Week #7: Player of the Week
Hillsborough Community College (Florida)
Reported to subscribers in 2013.
Home: Nicosia, Cyprus.
Sophomore, 5'11" Opposite and Outside Hitter.
Last Week: Zembyla exploded for 59 kills in five wins, lifting Hillsborough to a 20-5 record.
Congratulations to Briana Stowell who earned FCSAA Regional Setter of the Week. Keep it up!
NJCAA Region 8/FCSAA Volleyball Setter of the Week Briana Stowell, Hillsborough, Freshman, Orlando, Fla.
The #14 Lady Hawks cap a tough week by taking two in Palm Beach and going 5-0.
On Saturday, the Hawks first faced host #13 Palm Beach State. HCC jumped out to a 2-set lead. In set 3, however, HCC let a late 10-point lead go to force a 4th set.
"Give credit to Palm Beach for never giving up. Their staff is excellent, so I wasn't surprised." said Larkin. "As for us, we can be be better closing out sets. Our players are problem solving. They got this."
The Hawks avenged set 3 by winning 25-18. Erika Zembyla led all scorers with 18.5 points, including 16 kills on .440 hitting. The team also posted 13 total blocks.
When asked about the win after a 5:00am wake-up call to meet the bus, Erika said, "I got so amped because the warm-up music was just like Cyprus music! I know our coaches loved it too!"
In match 2, HCC faced #12 Indian River State who has been consistent all year. Again the Lady Hawks started strong, taking set 1, but the River bounced back taking set 2.
When asked what was said before set 3 to inspire the team, Cherlie Adorno said, "Well, Abbie's grandmother baked cookies. She bakes some serious cookies. One more bad set and those cookies may have been at risk!"
HCC took sets 3 and 4, 25-22, 25-17 to close out the match. The Hawks were led by their three pin players, Abbie, Dom, and Erika who posted 14, 16, 15 kills respectively. The team posted 11.5 total blocks, passed 2.5, and hit .330.
"I was pleased with the stats," said Larkin. "It was a complete match versus a quality opponent. We're getting there."
HCC earned its 10th 20-win season since 2003, moving to 20-5, 4-1.
HCC next faces PHSC on Tues night at HCC at 7pm.
October 9, 2015
The Lady Hawks sweep the conference series from SPC this season, winning at home 3-0.
"SPC is always a battle," said Larkin. "We are very happy we came away with two wins this year. They have a talented roster."
The Titans started tough battling all the way to set one and leading 24-23 at one point. The Lady Hawks rattled off 3 straight points to take the set. Sets 2 and 3 weren't as close with the Hawks prevailing 25-14, 25-17.
"Abbie was outstanding. She had 13 kills with no errors on 27 attempts. She also added 3 aces," said Larkin.
When asked how she felt about posting yet another double double this year, Abbie joked, "What's that?"
When pressed further she added, "We measure ourselves by the team performance and wins. I'm just happy we got the win."
Rachell Vargas Comme also provided a spark, coming off the bench to post 2.5 blocks.
"Rachell entered the game and made an immediate impact," said Larkin. "She had some blocks, but she also had a bunch of tags and was in position defensively when we needed it. It was a good night for her."
The Lady Hawks move to 18-5 and 4-1 in conference. In the morning, they travel to Palm Beach State to play two nationally ranked teams from the Southern Conference.
October 8, 2015
The Lady Hawks improve to 3-1 in conference with a 4-set victory over South Florida State College. HCC started strong winning set 1, 25-15, but the Panthers jumped on the Hawks in set 2 to even the match.
"SFSC showed great character as always," said Larkin. "They jumped on us in set 2 and played well with the lead. We had to make some adjustments before set 3."
In sets 3 and 4, the Lady Hawks regained control of the match winning both sets by the score 25-10.
"Erika [Zembyla] was solid for us tonight," continued Larkin. "It is easy to see the 15 kills, the .448 hitting percentage, and the 2.5 blocks, but she also made hustle plays, extended rallies, and did things that don't show up on the stat sheet."
The Lady Hawks recorded yet another double digit block performance, posting 12 versus the Panthers. MB Sharonda Pickering led the way, chipping in 6 total blocks.
Freshman setter Briana Stowell was a highlight Thursday night as well. She posted a .750 hitting percentage, killing 6 of 8 tries, to go with 36 assists and 2 aces.
"Coaching freshmen can be about as much fun as juggling porcupines," said Larkin. "Bri has ice in her veins, and she is making steady progress. That's all we can ask."
HCC faces SPC tomorrow (Friday) night at 6pm. Come and support the Lady Hawks AND take part in our Dig Pink breast cancer awareness match.
Let us all DIG deep, SET our minds on defeating breast cancer, and KILL this danger we face today.
HCC sits at 17-5, 3-1 on the season.
October 8, 2015
The Lady Hawks welcome their first addition to the 2016 roster. Libero Laura Rojas from Cypress High School in Orlando, FL has verbally committed to HCC. Laura also plays club ball at Orlando Volleyball Academy.
"Laura is a very mature player and a leader, and she has tremendous instincts," remarked Larkin. "She fit in extremely well with our team on her visit because she is very intense and driven."
Laura will bolster the Hawk defense after the departure of 2-yr starter and nationally ranked libero Cherlie Adorno. The Hawks will return current freshman libero Torrey Smith.
"We have been fortunate to have outstanding liberos and defensive players at HCC over the years," said Larkin. "There are many alumni role models whose pictures hang on our walls. We added another gym rat today, so I know we got better."
HCC Volleyball and the entire HCC community would like to welcome Laura to the Lady Hawk family!
October 7, 2015
The Lady Hawks sweep Florida College to move to 16-5. The Hawks controlled the tempo with strong serving and blocking. The team posted 9 aces and 11 blocks in the 3 sets. Erika Zembyla led all point scorers with 13.5 points including 5 aces.
"Erika filled the stat sheet," said Associate Head Coach Medvid. "She served well, passed well, and attacked for a high percentage."
In her first start of the year MB Sharonda Pickering chipped in 4 blocks and 2 kills on 4 attempts. Libero Cherlie Adorno averaged just under 8 digs per set.
"Briana also attacked well from the setter position tonight adding 6 kills with no errors," said Assistant Coach Babbit. "She seemed in control tonight."
When asked about the victory, Erika remarked, "Coach explained that this team is tough in their home gym, so we wanted to start strong. Our defense was really good tonight."
The Lady Hawks next travel to SFSC on Thursday for a conference match at 6pm. Then on Friday, HCC plays its Dig Pink match at home at 6pm versus SPC.
October 6, 2015
Congrats to Cherlie Adorno! She was named Region 8 Defensive Player of the Week.
NJCAA Region 8/FCSAA Volleyball Defensive Player of the Week Cherlie Adorno DeJesus, Hillsborough
Sophomore – Libero
Toa Boja, Puerto Rico
October 2, 2015
#12 HCC loses a heart breaker in 5 to #9 Polk State. After dropping the first set, largely due to errors, HCC got on script and won the next two easily.
"Between sets 3 and 4, our team was not focused on the task at hand," said Larkin. "I was worried we didn't understand the moment. Unfortunately, it turned out that way."
In set 4, HCC committed too many ball handling errors and let the Eagles hang around. Even so, the Lady Hawks were up 23-21 to close out the match. The mistakes returned, however, and the Eagles took advantage to push a 5th set.
"We had sound preparation and put the team in position to win," lamented Larkin. "We unfortunately snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. We need to be more mature and accountable. When we are, we will be special."
At the end of set 4 and throughout set 5, the Eagles leaned heavily on OH Yue Wu. The Eagles never backed down and never gave up.
"They set [Yue] in the front row and the back row and would have set her in the bathroom if they had to," said Larkin. "We didn't step up and make plays when we needed to."
The loss drops the Hawks to 15-5, 2-1 in the conference. The team plays at Florida College Tuesday night at 7pm.
"It's all about mentoring the girls right. That's what we spend most of our energy on, and those lessons will last a lifetime," concluded Larkin. "The volleyball is there. That's the easy part. It's about maturity and responsibility now."
October 2, 2015
HCC Volleyball was pleased to dedicate its conference victory tonight to support alumnus and HCC baseball player Rick Howroyd who is up in Boston battling and beating cancer. We are proud to be a part of this fundraiser. You are an inspiration to us all, Rick. We are all rickstrong! #rickstrong #Igotu
October 1, 2015
The Lady Hawks take round 2 in conference, defeating SCF in 4 sets. SCF made the match interesting when on the brink of going down 0-2, they served and scored 9 straight points down 17-24 to win 26-24.
"If you coach long enough, you'll see everything," said Coach Larkin. "We called timeouts; we changed setters; we subbed; I even rolled marbles out on the floor during one point," joked Larkin. "I was proud of their resolve and their ability to regain control of the match in set 3. It shows character."
Abbie O'Ferrell played a complete match recording 14 kills, 2 aces, a block, and 14 digs. She served 30 times and received 16 serves. Dominique Mason added 17 kills including 2 big kills to clinch set 4. Libero Cherlie Adorno recorded 29 digs to lead the defense.
When asked about the letdown in set 2, setter Briana Stowell remarked, "We knew what we were doing. We were trying to see if Coach's head would pop off."
The Hawks face another tough test Friday night at HCC at 6pm against Polk State.
"Back to back rivalry matches against quality programs and coaches is a tough challenge," added Larkin. "If we are advance in the post-season, we will have to handle moments like these. It's great for our development."
The Lady Hawks move to 2-0 in conference and 15-4 overall.
September 29, 2015
The Lady Hawks split two matches at the Polk Premier Tourney. HCC faced two tough opponents back to back in MDC and Daytona. MDC was last year's national runner-up and perennial power. HCC was able to close the match in 4 after dropping one set. "It is always emotional to play Miami regardless of their record," said Larkin. We expended some mental energy and then had 30 minutes to turn around and prepare for an eager Daytona team."
The Hawks were led by Erika Zembyla's 19 kills, 1.5 blocks and 3 aces. "Erika was stout for us today," commented Larkin. "She hit for a high percentage and contributed all over the court."
In the follow-up, the Lady Hawks were not as fortunate losing in 3. "We started in a funk and stayed there," said Larkin. "We were unable to maintain focus, but tri-matches down the road and post-season player will require that skill."
Daytona held the Lady Hawks to their lowest hitting percentage on the year and controlled tempo throughout. HCC resumes conference play this Thursday night at HCC at 6pm versus SCF and then plays Polk State on Friday at HCC at 6pm.
"These conference matches are critical, but we intend to dance with the date we brought," said Larkin. "Our sophomores understand the importance and are excited to do battle with our rivals."
#6 HCC is 14-4, 1-0.
September 23, 2015
The Lady Hawks whooped up on their friends from SGA in an Oreo stacking contest , winning a team pizza party! Way to go, girls! Good times! Thanks, Metz!
September 22, 2105
A big thank you to Mr. and Mrs. Bingham for stopping by the SPC away match tonight. They are always so kind and generous to our program. They are the parents of alumnus Emily (2010) who went on to play at USC Upstate (2012) before settling in North Carolina. See you all around the gym soon!
September 22, 2015
The Lady Hawks go on the road and win a tough 5-setter against SPC to start the conference season 1-0.
After dropping the first set, HCC rallied back to win sets 2 and 3. Seemingly in control in set 4, the Hawks let a lead slip away to force set 5. Again, HCC had a commanding lead before the Titans made a push. At 14-13, Larkin called his final timeout. "I looked at Abbie [O'Ferrell], and I told her that I trusted her. I said pick your set and your swing choice," said Larkin.
After the whistle, Abbie moved inside to hit a 2-ball and finished the set confidently. "I was really proud of the way she stepped up in the big moment," continued Larkin. "She earned the swing, and I had no doubt."
Abbie led the attack with 16 kills and held strong in serve receive. The Lady Hawks' block was also strong, blocking the Titans for 14 points. Dominique Mason and Sharonda Pickering posted 5 blocks and 4 blocks respectively.
The Suncoast Conference is powerful this year with three of the five teams in the national poll, four in the state poll, and decorated players on all rosters.
"This was an important road win in a conference that has no easy nights," said Larkin. "We got tougher tonight."
When asked how it feels to leave the gym with a road win, Rachell Vargas Comme replied, "One part rainbows, two parts unicorns, and 1/8 fresh-baked cookies."
13-3 HCC next travels to Polk State to play two matches on Friday against Miami Dade and Daytona. Conference play resumes next week.
September 17, 2015
Congrats to Alumnus Erin Wibert who posted a 16-Kill night helping University of the Cumberlands Patriots extend their win streak to 6 in a row. Way to go, Erin!
September 16, 2015
The Lady Hawks find a way to win at PHSC and improve to 12-3. The Lady Hawks jumped out to a 2-0 lead, but the Quistas fought back to level the match. In the 5th set, HCC took a commanding lead and never looked back, winning 15-10.
"Pasco is a difficult place to play. They have a lot of pride and play well at home," said Larkin. "We had hoped to close it out earlier, but I was extremely happy with our rhythm, decisions, and execution in set 5."
The Lady Hawks were led by Erika Zembyla's 21 kills and team total 15 blocks. Sharonda Pickering in limited action posted 4 blocks, and setter Briana Stowell chipped in 2.5 more.
"We learned a lot about ourselves tonight," continued Larkin. "It was a little like Clint Eastwood's movie The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly. Not to go too crazy with the movie metaphors, but 18-year old players can be a little like a box of chocolates... you never know what you'll get. I was just happy we found some caramels in set 5."
When asked how it felt to play in a hostile environment, freshman OH Arielle Allen said, "Hostile." The Lady Hawks have a break until next Tuesday when conference play begins at 6pm at SPC.
September 15, 2015
The HCC Volleyball Lady Hawks jump to first in this week's state volleyball poll. Currently HCC is 11th in the national poll with the next poll coming out on Wednesday. Go Hawks!September 15, 2015 The FCSAA Volleyball Coaches’ Poll, with number of first-place votes in parentheses, 2015 record, previous ranking and total points in voting by FCSAA volleyball coaches, the FCSAA Volleyball Chair and the FCSAA Scoreboard Coordinator. Rank Team
1. Hillsborough (8) 2. Palm Beach State (4) 3. Santa Fe (3) 4. State College of Florida (1) 5. Central Florida (2)
6. Polk State 7t. Indian River State 7t. Daytona State 9. Miami Dade 10. St. Petersburg
September 12, 2015
Day 2 of the Blinn Premier Tournament was not as kind to the Lady Hawks. HCC came out flat versus #6 IWCC and subsequently lost 3-0. "We struggled at the pins and just couldn't get anything going," said Larkin. "I felt like it was a good matchup for us, but we weren't ready to battle."
In the second match versus #1 Tyler, the Lady Hawks showed some grit. In set 1, the Hawks came from behind to win the first set 27-25, stunning Tyler. "I understood 4-0 was a possibility as was defeating the #1 team in the nation," said Larkin. "The challenge was making our players believe it and then leave it all out on the floor to achieve the goal."
HCC faltered in sets 3 and 4, but stormed back to win set 4, 25-18. Larkin continued, "I was extremely proud of the team's resilience and their ability to focus on the present during set 4." Set 5 proved to be a battle. HCC controlled the tempo and took a 13-11 lead before coming up just short, 13-15. "It was right in front of us. We simply didn't make the plays at the end," said Larkin. "We will grow from it. That type of moment cannot be simulated in practice. All of us will be better next time we're in that position."
HCC blocked well in both matches earning 11 points in each match. Unfortunately, the Lady Hawks committed 13 service errors in the first match and 15 service errors in the second. "I have some magic serving dust, which we will sprinkle on the ball before the whistle," joked Larkin. "We got this little problem covered."
5'4" Libero Cherlie Adorno commented, "It was a tough loss. At first, I didn't want to talk to anyone. I was ready to throw a roundhouse kick or a hammer fist or a barrage of uppercuts... then I realized we are so close! This day will only make us better."
HCC finished the event 2-2 with a win over #8 and losses to #6 and #1. #11 HCC is currently 11-3.
The Lady Hawks face Pasco Tuesday night at 7pm in Newport Richey.
September 11, 2015
HCC Volleyball started off strong at the Blinn Premier Tournament in Brenham, Texas, going 2-0 including a defeat over #8.
The Lady Hawks first defeated Pratt (KS) in straight sets. Erika Zembyla led all scorers with 10 kills, 3 aces, and a block. When asked about the victory, setter Briana Stowell said, "It was waffle power. We made some killer waffles at the hotel before our match."
Well, a trip to Nathan's BBQ for lunch seemed to have a little magic of its own too as the Lady Hawks returned to defeat host and #8 ranked Blinn in the afternoon. "We lost the first set 30-32, so I was worried about the team's mental state," said Larkin. "It can be tough to rally back with the hometown fans, the dance team, and the cheerleading squad motivating the home team. I thought I saw a band of clowns at one point."
HCC put the past behind them and won set 2 convincingly 25-12. "I was proud of our mental fortitude today," said Larkin. "We are starting to understand what it takes to win. I am proud of the team and excited for their future development." HCC went on to win sets 3 and 4 to earn the victory. Abbie O'Ferrell led all scorers with 13 kills, 5 aces, 1 block, and 20 digs.
The Lady Hawks next test is #6 IWCC and #1 Tyler back to back first thing in the morning. Captain Dominique Mason commented, "We're up for the challenge. I can see it in their eyes."
September 10, 2015
HCC Volleyball hits the national rankings coming in at #11. Usually a fixture in the national poll, HCC fell out of the polls early in 2014 and had trouble returning. "It's nice to be recognized," said Coach Larkin. "It's a challenge to get there and stay there. It's a testament to the hard work the girls are putting in." When asked how hard it is to break into the national poll, Larkin explained, "The state of Florida is one of the best regions for junior college volleyball now. Sometimes our beating each other up can make it harder to maintain a national ranking." Five of the 20 ranked teams earned spots in this week's poll.
September 9, 2015
A big thank you goes out to SGA for planning a great night and to the FEF faculty and students for supporting our team. The Lady Hawks defeated Webber International JV 3-0. HCC was led by Erika Zembyla's 10 kills and Abbie O'Ferrell's 8 kills. All players factored in the victory. "We had a total team effort tonight," commented Larkin. "It was our final preparation for our trip to Texas this weekend." The Hawks will be tested in Texas, playing 3 teams in the national top 10. "I feel comfortable with what we have accomplished in our first 10 matches, but we have to continue to improve," said Larkin. "It's a long race."When asked how she felt about the team's victory tonight, MB Iris Sietsma said, "I really like cats." HCC (9-1) is currently the #3 team in Florida and poised to enter the NJCAA national poll.
September 8, 2015
Congratulations to libero Cherlie Adorno who was named Region 8 Defensive Player of the Week.
NJCAA Region 8/FCSAA Volleyball Defensive Player of the Week Cherlie Adorno DeJesus, Hillsborough
Sophomore – Libero
Toa Boja, Puerto Rico
Averaged 7.1 digs over a total of 15 sets played
Recorded season-high 36 digs in five-set win at previously-undefeated Pensacola State (September 3) and finished the week with 30 in a four-set triumph over Florida State College
Leads Region 8 in total digs (196), is second in digs/set (5.8) and is inside the top 15 nationally in both categories
Last week, recorded two entries into the 25-Dig Club (28 vs. Daytona State, 28 vs. St. Petersburg)
September 7, 2015
Alumnus Setter Carmen Fernandez posted 33 assists 13 digs and 5 aces in Morgan State's first win of the season. The Bears defeated Chicago State at the UIC Invitational in Chicago. Way to go and keep it up!
Alumnus OH Shelby Walker helped Ohio University upset #10 Kentucky in Lexington. Ohio followed it up with wins over LSU and and a come from behind victory versus Xavier. In the comeback, senior middle blocker Shelby totaled a season high 15 kills along with 8 digs and 3 total blocks.
September 6, 2015
Alumnus Antia Rodriguez helps Valdosta St to a 3-0 start to the season. The Blazers defeated Barton and Barry before facing the host Lynn. In a tough 5-setter Antia led all attackers with 16 kills. Keep it up, Antia, and have a great season!
September 5, 2015
Congrats to HCC Alumnus Andrea Tauai for leading New Mexico State with 12 kills, 16 digs, and 3 aces against Abilene Christian!
September 5, 2015
The Lady Hawks completed a perfect performance at the Pensacola State Invitational, going 4-0. In the 4th match, HCC faced FSCJ who flashed some serious defense at times. Both teams battled back and forth, did for dig. The Hawks prevailed in 4 sets, closing out the 4th 25-17. "Cherlie and her 30 digs and consistent serving was a difference maker for us," said Coach Larkin. "She has also become a vocal leader on the floor." Dom chipped in 14 kills and Erika posted another double double. "The match was certainly competitive," continued Larkin, "but you should have seen the frosh versus the sophs charades game at the break. There was blood shed."
The 8-1 Lady Hawks next play Webber JV on Tuesday night at HCC at 7pm for SGA Appreciation Night. Come join us for popcorn, giveaways, and lots of shenanigans!
September 5, 2015
HCC Volleyball defeated Odessa (TX) in straight sets Saturday morning. Having started the season in the NJCAA top 20 poll, Odessa would be a good test for the Hawks. "Odessa played really well yesterday, so we were looking forward to the match-up," explained Larkin. "Our setter Briana had a great match. She kept the defense off balance and put our hitters in some great positions." Briana Stowell contributed 4 kills, 3 aces, 1 block, and 27 assists. MB Iris Sietsma also hit .670 with 9 kills for the Lady Hawks. "I wasn't sure how the weekend would go when Bri boarded the bus with a giant bag of potato chips," quipped Larkin, "but she's dialed in now." HCC faces FSCJ at 2pm to conclude the tournament.
September 4, 2015
HCC Volleyball survives a scare at Pensacola State, winning in 5 sets. "PSC fought hard, and we feel fortunate to leave with a victory," said Larkin. "Dom (20 kills) was a superhero tonight. We would have set her in the bathroom if she needed to go."
Abigail O'Ferrell contributed a double double (10 kills and 12 digs) and a couple of aces in the effort. The Lady Hawks face Odessa (TX) and FSCJ on Saturday.
September 4, 2015
HCC Volleyball gets off on the right foot, sweeping Gulf Coast State at the PSC Invitational. "We showed some defense early and then found some rhythm on offense. It wasn't rhythm you could dance to," said Larkin, "but it was rhythm." The Lady Hawks were led by Dominique Mason's 14 points, Erika Zembyla's 11 points, and Abbie O'Ferrell's 10 points. Libero Cherlie Adorno posted 20 digs and passed a 2.7 in serve receive. "We have a little work to do at the service line," continued Larkin. "We left that part of the game on the bus. I hope our freshmen remember to offload it before the next match."
HCC next plays Pensacola State at 6pm.
September 2, 2015
Congrats to senior and HCC alumnus Shelby Walker for helping Ohio University defeat #10 Kentucky in Lexington in four sets. Shelby started and played OH and had a couple of key blocks late in set 4 to set up match points. We're so proud of you Shelby. Keep it up!
August 29, 2015
HCC Kickoff Classic Day 2
HCC Volleyball battled two tough opponents Saturday, losing to Indian River State 1-3 and defeating Daytona State 3-1.
"Against River, we just couldn't get anything going," explained Larkin. "You have to give them credit; they took it to us this morning." Luckily, after a homemade lunch of Filippelli Italian style meatballs, the Lady Hawks bounced back and brought some full belly intensity to the Daytona match.
"Honestly... I'm superstitious, so after the morning loss, I went home and changed my clothes, my shoes, and my socks," quipped Larkin. "I obviously wore the wrong clothes to the gym. That's on me. I take full responsibility."
Well, something worked because the Lady Hawks looked inspired as they battled the Falcons, ultimately prevailing in 4 sets.
HCC was led by floor generals Briana Stowell and Shayna Filippelli who posted 4 aces and 3 aces respectively. Abbie O'Ferrell added 13 kills, Erika Zembyla added 11 kills, and Dominique Mason added 10 kills. MB Rachell Vargas also posted 7 kills and 2 blocks. Cherlie Adorno tallied 25 kills to lead the defense.
"I saw some real smiles after the game," said Larkin. "It doesn't get any better than that."
The Lady Hawks will travel to Pensacola State College on Thursday for a weekend Invitational.
August 28, 2015
HCC Volleyball finished the day 2-0 after defeating #16 Central Florida. Cherlie Adorno led the defense with 26 digs, and HCC had four players in double digit kills: Dominique Mason 12, Erika Zembyla 13, Iris Sietsma 11, and Abbie O'Ferrell 10. Tied at one set apiece, the Lady Hawks battled back in a set 3, down 12-18, to win the set 25-22. "A few freshmen came off the bench and gave us a tremendous lift, " said Larkin. "I was really proud of the poise that Larra, Sharonda, and Arielle showed." Tied at 11-11 in set 5, the Hawks pulled away with timely kills by Shayna Filippelli and Larra Bickelhaupt, winning 15-13. "We blocked really well in spurts [14 total blocks]," continued Larkin. "We made it an uphill climb with our performance at the service line, but our team learned a lot from fighting through that adversity." HCC plays IRSC Saturday morning at 9:30 and Daytona State later in the day.
HCC Volleyball started the season strong, defeating Lake Sumter State College in straight sets.The Lady Hawks were led by Dominique Mason's 9 kills and 2 aces, Erika Zembyla's 9 kills and 2 aces, and Iris Sietsma's 8 kills and a block. Libero Cherlie Adorno posted a 2.5 receive percentage and also recorded 2 aces. Coach Larkin noted, "I liked our style of play. Every match is a chance for me to get to know this group better and for them to improve. I saw some good things out there." HCC next faces CF at 4pm at the Dale Mabry Gymnasium.
August 24, 2015
Congrats to Coach Monica and Luke on their engagement! What a beautiful couple. We are so happy for you!
April 30, 2015
Congratulations to Joahnnie Astacio and Erin Wibert who have accepted scholarships to play for the University of the Cumberlands. They are very excited to move to Kentucky and plan to work hard to help maintain the program's excellence. Good luck, ladies. We are proud of you! Go Patriots!
April 23, 2015
The Lady Hawks are pleased to announce the commitment of 6' MB Iris Sietsma from the Netherlands. "The first time I spoke with Iris I could tell she had confidence," explained Larkin. "She has good blocking instincts, and she works hard in transition. Her all around skill set will fit nicely with our program." The Lady Hawks look to field a very diverse roster again in 2015. "Cultural exchanges make the world a much smaller place," said Larkin. "I like the learning opportunities that this environment has on our student athletes." Welcome to the Hawks family, Iris!
April 21, 2015
The Lady Hawks are pleased to announce the commitment of Larra Bickelhaupt from Oasis HS and USA South Volleyball Club. Larra is a 5'10" OH who has great determination. "Larra has big volleyball dreams, and we like that around here," explained Coach Larkin. "She is a naturally strong, well-rounded player who will take it to the next level once her confidence grows." Welcome to the Lady Hawks family!
April 14, 2015
The Lady Hawks had a great night at the athletic banquet. Great food and a beautiful view of Tampa Bay.... A good time was had by all!Congrats to Dom (Most Improved),Cherlie (Defensive Player of the Year), Jo (Outstanding Teammate), Erin (Coaches' Choice), and Antia (Lady Hawk Volleyball Award). The past was legendary, and the future is bright!
April 6, 2015
HCC volunteering again at Roland Park before their first big game! Go Dragons!!
March 23, 2015
The Lady Hawks volunteer their time to help the Roland Park Dragons middle school team prepare for their season. Thanks to Coach Eric for the invite. It was great fun!!
February 17, 2015
The Lady Hawks are pleased to welcome Briana Stowell, setter from Top Select Volleyball club. Briana is a 5'9" left handed setter who has played on one of the strongest club teams in her age group for a number of years. "Bri has a 'been there, done that' mentality," said Larkin. "She brings a ton of experience to the position for us." The team and Bri got along very well on her visit, and she is very excited to start getting to work. Welcome to the family, Bri!
February 12, 2015
The Lady Hawks Volleyball team welcomes Sharonda Pickering, middle blocker, from the British Virgin Islands. Sharonda has often represented BVI in international play. “Sharonda is an outstanding athlete and a wonderful person,” explained Coach Larkin. “We are excited to work with her and watch her grow into an imposing force. In time, she will pose match-up problems offensively and defensively.” Sharonda is the 3rd commitment to the Lady Hawks family. Welcome, Sharonda!
February 10 , 2015
The Lady Hawks are pleased to announce the signing of Torrey Smith (Lib/S). Torrey follows in the footsteps of sister Shelby Smith, currently a captain at UWF. "We are a family at HCC, so I love when the sisters of our alumni write us," remarked Larkin. "Torrey is an intense and extremely fast athlete. She brings versatility as she has played multiple positions over her career." Torrey currently plays for Top Select Volleyball Club. Welcome, Torrey!
February 4, 2015
HCC is pleased to welcome new Lady Hawk, 5'10" OH Arielle Allen. Arielle is a Tampa girl who comes to us from Tampa Bay Raptors and King High School. "It's always great to hear 'Yes,sir' when you are talking with a recruit," explained Coach Larkin. "Arielle is a great person, and her versatility and athleticism will fit in nicely with our team. We are very excited to start working with her."
January 20, 2015
The Lady Hawks would like to congratulate Antia Rodriguez who has committed to play for Valdosta State next season. In 2014, Valdosta State earned a bid to the NCAA Tournament and won its first round match versus St. Leo. Antia, a native of Spain, was a 2-yr starter, Captain, and an All-conference selection during her time at HCC. We are all so proud of her and will follow her career from afar. Congratulations, Tia!
November 9, 2015
October 31, 2014
Sophomores Antia, Jo, and Erin led out the Lady Hawks versus Pasco Thursday night in the season finale. In front of a rowdy and costumed crowd, the Hawks swept one of the strongest teams in the state this year. Erin contributed key kills; Jo contributed key blocks, and Antia contributed key assists throughout the match. The key to the victory was HCC's dominant net play. The Lady Hawks posted a gaudy 15 blocks in only 3 sets.
"We were awesome tonight," said Larkin. "We showed a fight and a passion we haven't seen yet this year. It was amazing to see many of the things we teach finally executed. We waited patiently (wink) for a night like this. I am so proud of our team."
In set 2, the Lady Hawks found themselves down by 10 points. Despite two Pasco time outs, HCC stormed all the way back to win the set and carry momentum into set 3. Volleyball may not be a game of perfection, but the Lady Hawks were nearly perfect in that comeback stretch of set 2.
"Wow... Set 2... After my staff and I chugged some Pepto Bismol, we called a time out," joked Larkin. "We were simply trying to regain our confidence and our composure to prepare for set 3," explained Larkin. "It turned out that once the players handled their individual responsibilities, we couldn't be stopped. A comeback like that takes character."
The Hawks hit .270 on the night and did well to manage the unforced errors that plagued the young team this season. The final match began with a dig by Erin and a block by Jo, and it ended with a block by Antia. It was a fitting end to the HCC careers of three extraordinary student athletes.
When asked what Larkin would do with his free time in November, Larkin replied, "I'd like to say I'll be fishing, but in truth I'll be preparing for our run in 2015. That work starts now."
October 30, 2014
The Lady Hawks are pleased to announce that Dominique Mason and Cherlie Adorno was named to the 1st Team All-Conference team. Antia Rodriguez and Erika Zembyla were named to the 2nd Team. Congratulations to these four student athletes! All but Antia will return to help lead HCC in the 2015 season.
October 28, 2014
Congratulations to Cherlie Adorno Dejesus for winning the FCSAA Volleyball Defensive Player of the Week. Cherlie averaged 7.9 digs per set this week and posted her 14th and 15th entries in the 25 Dig Club. This week she posted 40 vs Florida College and 32 vs FSCJ. We're proud of you!
October 25, 2014
The Lady Hawks sweep Pensacola State College in first round of the Halloween Invitational. HCC was led by Erika's 10 kills, Aira's 8 kills and 2 blocks, and Antia's 33 assists.
"The girls enjoyed themselves today," remarked Larkin. "Many have family in town, so it's natural to get a little tight, but they did a nice job staying loose."
HCC faces Florida College at 10am and FSCJ at 12:30pm on Saturday.
Don't be a Halloweenie; come out and enjoy some volleyball.
October 24, 2014
Congratulations to former Lady Hawk Jenna Kirkwood! She and her teammate were named Gulf South Conference Offensive and Defensive player of the week.
October 24, 2014
Lady Hawks drop a match to conference for Polk State. The Lady Hawks were led by 5.5 blocks by Jo and 3 blocks by Aira. The team had 13 total blocks. Cherlie, ranked 3rd in the nation in digs/set, passed a 2.5 and posted 20 digs. Erika led the attackers with 12 kills.
"When we block, we're good. Polk looked baffled when we showed discipline at the net," said Larkin. "At the end of the day, 14 hitting errors and 5 service errors are just too many mistakes to overcome against a good team like Polk."
HCC hosts Pensacola, Florida College, and FSCJ this weekend.
"I believe our frosh came to understand our defensive vision for the first time tonight," continued Larkin. "That leaves me hopeful for the future."
HCC squares off against Pensacola at 4pm on Friday at the Dale Mabry Gym.
October 20, 2014
So close yet so far... The Lady Hawks fought admirably at the Tournament of Champions in Jacksonville. After dropping their first match to #12 Monroe, the Lady Hawks won the next match and then dropped two 5-setters by only a couple of points.
"Although we weren't ready to compete in the first match, we played tough this weekend," said Larkin. "We moved Antia into the setting position for the final 3 matches, and she made a very positive impact. It's tough to move one of your leading point scorers to setter, but it was time to give her a chance to lead."
With Antia at the helm, the Hawks defeated Northeastern and fell to Johnson County and New Mexico Military 13-15 and 15-17 respectively.
"[Antia] was very impressive for having set only 3 or 4 matches in her life," laughed Larkin. "She has had a handful of hours of training. Not bad for setting on the fly."
HCC concludes conference play on Thursday at home versus Polk State at 7pm. It is HCC's dig pink match to bring awareness to breast cancer and inspire continued research. Come out decked in pink!
October 15, 2014
The Lady Hawks drop a 4-set match to tough-minded SFSC. "We were holding on to a chance to play for a state berth on our home floor," said Larkin. "Up 24-20 in set 4 and finding a way to lose kind of sums up our season.
"After making multiple changes throughout the match including a setter change, SFSC used grit and determination in the improbable comeback of set 4. It was the first time SFSC was victorious against the Hawks in the last 8 years.
"We have had trouble finding a lineup that displays consistent effort and performance as well as the needed amount of passion," continued Larkin. "It was a teachable moment on the way home. I explained that you only get 4 college seasons; the last thing you want to have is regret."
The Lady Hawks look to rebound against conference leader SCF Wednesday night at home at 7pm.
October 10, 2014
Sisters Sydney and Regan brought the Lady Hawks luck against SPC Thursday night!
October 10, 2014
HCC bounces back at home with a 4-set win against conference rival SPC.
"We could see the future at times tonight," said Larkin. "The players had fun and handled adversity pretty well tonight. Closing out the match the way we did showed growth."
HCC had three players post double digit kills: Dom 19, Antia 14, and Sophia 10.
"Dominique and Antia have posted double doubles in nearly every match," explained Larkin. "Their consistency and contribution may be overlooked a bit this season. I was also pleased with Sophia tonight. Her transition from Germany has been challenging at times, but she looked comfortable out there."
Cherlie led the defense with 28 digs, and Rachell led the team in blocks with 4.
"Clearly the highlight tonight was Shayna's in-game interview," remarked Larkin. "You can't teach that."
The Hawks and their fans raised money for the Sydney Has A Sister foundation tonight. "It's important to pay it forward. Our student athletes are learning to be good citizens; that's as important as anything else they are learning in our program."
HCC improved to 3-2 in conference. The Lady Hawks face SFSC in Avon Park on Tuesday at 7pm.
October 8, 2014
Come out and watch the Lady Hawks battle SPC at 7pm Thursday night! The event will raise money for SYDNEY HAS A SISTER, which provides $1000.00 scholarships to college bound students who have supported their family and sibling(s) impacted by autism. Great volleyball and a great cause! http://www.sydneyhasasister.com/
October 8, 2014
The Lady Hawks would like to thank two generous sponsors. We are sincerely grateful for the donations from Jason Wilson and Mr. and Mrs. Bingham (daughter Emily 2010). Your generosity and thinking of us is so special! Thanks from all the girls! -- Coach Gary and the Lady Hawks
October 8, 2014
The Lady Hawks dropped a critical match vs conference foe Polk State 1-3. "We passed a 2.4 but still displayed a chaotic offense," said Larkin. "We need to find answers."
HCC had only 7 blocks, served a -4, and hit .190.
"We'll learn a lot about these girls in the next couple of weeks. Sports is merely a test of character. What a great opportunity to grow as individuals," said Larkin. "I can't wait for Thursday."
The Lady Hawks were led by Dom's 17 kills and Antia's 13 kills.
"If you can win your home matches, you always have a chance to get through conference play."
HCC plays SPC at home at 7pm. The match will also raise money for autism research.
October 4, 2014
HCC splits a pair against top 10 teams on Saturday at the Polk Invitational.
After feeding the team at midnight the Lady Hawks had to turn around and face national power Miami Dade first thing in the morning. The Hawks went -6 from the service line and tallied only 4 blocks.
"We had opportunities in set 3 to make it interesting, but we couldn't make them uncomfortable," explained Larkin. "Our team has seen the best the nation has to offer and knows we are close. We just have to learn sustain a competitive effort."
The Lady Hawks bounced back against Daytona State who looked to be cruising after taking the first 2 sets before HCC controlled tempo and won the next 3 to win the match in 5 sets.
"I was extremely pleased with our turn around," said Larkin. "We looked like a team. We needed that."
HCC recorded 15 total blocks, and Dominique posted 20 kills and two blocks, and Antia posted 16 kills, 2 aces, and 2 blocks. Cherlie stood on her head recording a 2.6 serve receive percentage and 36 digs. Cherlie is currently ranked in the top 5 of nation for digs per set.
HCC plays a critical conference match at Polk State Tuesday night at 7pm.
October 4, 2014
The Lady Hawks split two matches on Day 1 of the Polk Invitational.
Dominique Mason led all scorers with 15 points in the first match, a 3-1 win over Indian River State. She repeated the 15 point output in a tough 5-set loss to Palm Beach State in match 2. Erika added 17.5 points to lead all scorers vs. PBS, and Aira added 13.5 points.
"We did some good things," said Larkin. "At times we dominated today. We just need to play all points the same way."
Antia handled most of the setting duties on day one after only a day of preparation at that position.
"Antia handled herself admirably, and we had strong libero play from Cherlie as usual," remarked Larkin.
HCC plays Miami Dade and Daytona State on day 2.
October 1, 2014
Lady Hawks drop a conference match at SCF in straight sets. HCC made a brief run in set 3, controlling the set up to point 23, but in the end they faltered. "Our preparation was good this week, but we didn't pose too much of a challenge tonight," said Larkin. "Too many girls had off nights at the same time."
Sophia Baehr got hot late posting 10 kills as a substitute after various lineup changes were tried by the coaching staff.
"Our girls are young. They don't realize how fast it goes," observed Larkin. "We have completed nearly half of our season and half of our conference schedule, but we haven't seen a sense of urgency yet. That's a danger."
HCC travels to Polk State on Friday to play a few national powers such as Daytona and MDC. The Lady Hawks better be ready for some tough competition.
"Our focus is on the weekend now. It's always about being better tomorrow than we were today. We'll get there," concluded Larkin.
HCC is 5-9, 2-1 in conference play.
September 26, 2014
The Lady Hawks move to 2-0 in conference play with a 4-set victory on their Wounded Warrior Match. The team warmed up in camouflage T-shirts in honor of our wounded heroes returning from the battlefield.
"It was a great honor to use this match to bring awareness to such a worthy cause. We are lucky to have our service men and women protecting our freedoms," said Larkin.
The Lady Hawks took the first two sets before surrendering the 3rd set 27-29. "We lost focus a little and SFSC was making plays. There was a lot of great defense on both sides of the net," remarked Larkin.
HCC was led by Dominique's 24 points, Erika's 20 points, and Antia's 18 points. Cherlie passed 2.5 in serve receive and posted 30 digs, and Natalie tallied 50 assists.
"Cherlie made all the plays she was supposed to make and stole a few points with splash plays," said Larkin. "She was an eraser tonight."
In front of a large home crowd and with Hawk TV doing the play by play, HCC closed out the final set 25-16. When asked how it felt to start 2-0 in conference play, sophomore MB Joahnnie said, "It feels good, soooo good!"
"After set three, I told the team that my children's futures were at stake. If they didn't close out the match soon, my kids would fail all their tests tomorrow and not make it to college," quipped Larkin. "I said 'please don't take away my children's dreams.'"
HCC resumes conference play next Tuesday at SCF at 7pm.
September 24, 2014
The Lady Hawks start conference play by winning at SPC 3-1. The home of the Titans has often troubled the Hawks, and tonight was no different. HCC dropped the first set "a lot to a little." Coach Larkin explained, "Coach White had his troops ready to battle. Before the game, our team talked about playing the 1st point the same way as the 25th point. Well, we did that in set 1; we got our butts kicked on all of the them. I almost subbed our bus driver into the match."
The Lady Hawks bounced back, however, and controlled the next two sets. "I saw some instinctive plays tonight," continued Larkin. "That means our players are growing into their skins. We said a few 'wow's' on the bench after HCC points. That's a good sign."
Set 4 was a classic. After the teams tied it at 25-25, each team had multiple turns at match point. It was a gritty finish to a hard fought match. Larkin even became animated on the sideline. "I'll be honest," began Assistant Coach Danielle, "I was just glad they had a Defibulator station. And at one point, I thought Larkin pulled a hammy." HCC finally prevailed 35-33 to take the set and the match.
"Conference wins are extremely important," said Larkin. "I'm proud of our players' ability to see the match to the end. Wins won't come easy in the Suncoast Conference, so every one is cause for celebration."
Dominique led all hitters with 18 kills. Erika chipped in 12 kills, 3.5 blocks, and 2 aces. Antia had a double double of 15 kills and 15 digs. Cherlie had 41 digs, and Natalie had 41 assists.
Join us Thursday night for our Wounded Warrior home match versus SFSC at 7pm at the Dale Mabry gym.
September 15, 2014
Congratulations to Dominique Mason who was named to the Blinn Invitational All-tourney team. Way to go, Dom!
September 14, 2014
The Lady Hawks return from Blinn College battle tested. "In my opinion, we're all chasing Blinn and Tyler," said Larkin. "Our results versus Tyler and Blinn were on par with Salt Lake and Hill. I felt like we missed an opportunity versus Hill and could have competed more fiercely against Salt Lake," continued Larkin. The Lady Hawks took a tough 5-set loss to Hill after rallying back from 2 sets down. HCC jumped out on Salt Lake taking set 1 easily but gave away momentum and ultimately the match.
"Dominique was our most consistent performer and grew in leaps and bounds. Antia and Cherlie were steady and certainly have more to give, and I felt Erika showed some swagger coming out aggressively versus Blinn." The setting load fell to Natalie with Shayna out with injury.
"Natalie was an OH her whole life. Her progress will take a little time, but soon, she will be an unbelievable talent at the setting position," commented Larkin. "We are a work in progress, but this event was the best possible preparation for the conference season."
HCC is 4-8 right now, but results in conference are the key to reaching the post season. The Lady Hawks have one full week of practice before facing conference foes.
"Our team became closer in Texas and is beginning to understand our expectations. I enjoy watching us grow from week to week," concluded Larkin.
September 6, 2014
HCC goes 1-1 at the Daytona State Tri-match. The Lady hawks swept Webber JV in the first match. HCC then faced the formidable host whom the Hawks beat in 3 at home last weekend. This time the Falcons won in 4. The highlight for the Hawks was a 10-point comeback on the heels of 4 blocks to rally back and take set 2. "We battled today. At times the moment is still too big for my freshmen, but we showed glimpses of excellence," said Coach Larkin. "Daytona is experienced and balanced. This type of match accelerates our growth." The Lady Hawks dropped to 3-4 overall. "We will train hard this week. Perhaps we can afford to taper our training later in the year, but for now it is all about getting after it in the practice gym," added Larkin. Standout performances included Dominique Mason's 16 kills and Antia Rodriguez's 15 kills vs Daytona State.
HCC travels to Blinn in Texas on Thursday evening.
September 3, 2014
The Lady Hawks suffered its most lopsided defeat at Pasco State College in 5 years, getting swept in straight sets even though HCC had the lead late in the first two sets. "It was humbling," said Coach Larkin. "Losses seem to be taken in stride. We're teaching work ethic, passion, and commitment right now. Technique and tactics will have to wait." HCC next plays a tri-match at Daytona on Friday. Clearly my staff and I need to do better. It all starts with us, and we have to find solutions.
August 30, 2014
#9 Lady Hawks go 2-2 on their opening weekend. "We ended the weekend starting 6 freshmen. Their ceiling is high, but we lack toughness, discipline, and the fundamental skills required for each position. It'll take time, but we'll get there. I've been spoiled with a few returning starters each year. I haven't had to work like this in a while, so I told my family I'd see them at Thanksgiving," joked Larkin.
HCC started strong beating SPC and regional power Daytona on day 1, but showed their lack of experience by dropping a match to PBSC and a 5-set match to CF.
"As soon as we put our teammates and the program ahead of ourselves, we'll start to become the team I know we can be," said Larkin. "It will be a ton of work but with a great reward at the end."
HCC plays at PHSC Wednesday night at 7pm.
July 31, 2014
Thank you to our participants at the 2014 HCC Team Camp. We really enjoyed working with you all. Have terrific seasons!
And congratulations to Manatee HS who won the mini/tournament on Day 4!
July 9, 2014
"Thanks to al who participated in summer league and congratulations to Bloomingdale High School for winning 1st place! Also congrats to 2nd place Durant High School and 3rd place King High School. Great job everybody!"
July 8, 2014
HCC All-American Rachel Powell gets hitched! Congratulations Rachel!!
July 2, 2014
Camper's at Larkin's Setting School display their leadership!
June 27, 2014
HCC Campers enjoy SR and Dirty Defense Camp. The staff was VERY impressed!
June 12, 2014
HCC camps started with a bang! All had fun at the All Skills Boot Camp. The girls worked hard, and we are very proud of them. We even made time for a Frozen singing contest :)
June 7, 2014
HCC Volleyball volunteers at MacDill AIr Force Base.
Players and coaches enjoyed giving their time to the children of our military personnel. It was fitting as it was June 6th, the anniversary of D-Day and our landing in Normandy. There were some future stars out there for sure!
May 9, 2014
HCC is pleased to announce the signing of Shayna Filipelli setter from Mitchell High School. "We know Shayna well from the club circuit. She was coached hard by her club coach Doug Chinchar, so her toughness will fit in with our program nicely," said Larkin. Shayna provides competition and depth at a position of need after the graduation of Mariam Maldonado and Carmen Fernandez who moved on to NCAA institutions. Welcome to the Hawks family!
April 30, 2014
Eight Lady Hawk volleyball players will leave HCC and compete for 4-year colleges and universities. "Our job is to academically and athletically prepare our student athletes for the next challenge," said Larkin. "This is how we measure ourselves as a program. It's a happy day, and we are so proud of these girls." The whole HCC community would like to congratulate these talented student athletes and wish them the best in the future.
April 28, 2014
Congratulations to Becca Conrad who has committed to play for the Grand Canyon University Sand Team. "Becca is an avid beach player; it runs in her family. This is an excellent opportunity," explained Larkin, "because there aren't many sand scholarships out there yet. We are extremely proud of her." Congratulations Becca! Go Lopes!
April 25, 2014
The Lady Hawks are pleased to announce the commitment of Britney Powell from George Jenkins High School. Britney is a former softball player whose love for volleyball brought her back to the sport. "Britney is a hard worker who is excited for the opportunity," said Larkin. "Her athleticism and determination drew us to her. My staff loved her right away." Britney is the 12th player to sign on to the 2014 roster. Welcome.
April 24, 2014
HCC is pleased to announce the commitment of Dominique Mason from Chicago, IL. Dominique is an 5'10" OH. "When we met Dominique, we knew she should be a Lady Hawk," explained Larkin. "She has a wonderful way about her that will mesh terrifically with our team. On the court, she lights up, exerts herself, and gets after it!"
Welcome to the family, Dominique!
April 14, 2014
The Lady Hawks lend a hand! HCC volleyball players visited the Roland Park Dragons to help them prepare for their next match. Coach Eric has done a great job with the Dragons, and the HCC players had so much fun working with the girls. They can't wait to go back!
April 14, 2014
The Lady Hawks competed at the Fiesta on Siesta college Beach volleyball tournament. The Lady Hawks posted a stellar 16-4 team record. All teams went 3-1 except the trio of Carmen, Kim, and Jo who were undefeated. It was an impressive end to a spring beach season that included an undefeated dual match record. We're all very proud of the players and enjoyed seeing them enjoy the beach season. On Tuesday night, the entire athletic department will attend the annual sports banquet. The year went by too quickly!
April 11, 2014
The Lady Hawks receive a commitment from 6'2" MB Aira Hanson from Rockford, IL. "We are very pleased to pick up Aira," explained Coach Larkin. "Aira has tremendous upside. She understands and applies coaching easily. If she works hard like we expect her to, she will take a giant leap in development during her time here." Aira is the 11th commitment for the 2014 Hawks, who anticipate a couple more signings before the recruiting season is over.
April 4, 2014
The Lady Hawks are pleased to announce the commitment of Sophia Baehr 6-foot RS/MB from Germany. Sophia is versatile player that can play multiple positions. "Sophia is a great addition to our roster," said Larkin. "She is an excellent net presence with good blocking instincts. She hits a heavy ball and has the ability to ball handle and play 6-rotations as needed. We loved her commitment to the sport and maturity. She will fit in nicely with our volleyball family." The entire HCC community would like to welcome Sophia. Congratulations!
March 29, 2014
The Lady Hawks are pleased to announce the addition of Assistant Coach Danielle Priest. Danielle is an HCC alumna who graduated in 2010 and played on two of HCC's top performing teams. She was part of two Conference Championships, 2 Gulf District Championships, and 2 NJCAA national championships appearances (2008 and 2009).
After HCC, Danielle played a season at FAU and also spent time on the Florida Wave professional indoor team. Danielle graduated form USF with a BA in Business Management.
"Danielle understands our culture at HCC; that is most important," said Larkin. "Being a middle blocker, she will attend to that position in our training gym, and her varied playing experiences and life experiences will be useful as she mentors our student athletes," continued Larkin. "She is an outstanding addition."
From the whole HCC community, Welcome home!
March 26, 2014
Congratulations to Abbie O'Ferrell who signed with the Lady Hawks. Abbie is a 5'11" OH from southwest Florida. "Abbie is a coach's daughter; we love that at HCC," said Larkin. "Abbie has excellent hand contact, an array of shots, and a high vball IQ. She'll fit in nicely with our philosophy." Welcome to the HCC family, Abbie!
March 26, 2014
Congratulations to Mariam Maldonado who has committed to play for Flagler College. Mariam was the 2013 MVP of the FCSAA State Championship. "Mariam really connected with the assistant coaches, the college, and St. Augustine," explained Larkin. "Upon meeting the head coach, it didn't take long for her to decide." We're very proud of you, Mariam. Good luck!
March 21, 2014
HCC finishes the beach regular season undefeated for the first time! Mariam and Shelby as well as Antia and Fasa won all matches and Andy and Becca only lost two in the #1 spot. All pairs were amazing and it was a lot of fun! Go Hawks!
March 17, 2014
Congratulations to Andrea Tauai who has committed to New Mexico State in the WAC Conference. "Andy brings so many things to the table; she's going to be a tremendous asset for the Aggies," commented Larkin. "When she returned from her visit, she lit up, so we weren't surprised." We're proud of you, Andy! Good Luck!
March 4, 2014
The Lady Hawks are please to announce the signing of libero Cherlie Adorno. Cherlie comes to HCC by way of Puerto Rico. "Cherlie meshed with our team immediately," explained Larkin. "She has solid fundamentals and confident leadership qualities, which will bolster our back court defense."
Welcome to the Hawks family, Cherlie!
February 17, 2014
HCC Volleyball is pleased to announce that MB Shelby Walker has committed to play at Ohio University. "Ohio is a top 25 team and has recently controlled the MAC Conference, earning bids to the NCAA national Championships," commented Larkin. "Shelby is excited for the challenge and the opportunity." Way to go, Shelby! We're proud of you.
The Lady Hawks wish to announce libero Nicole Gonzalez's commitment to current NAIA National Champion University of Texas at Brownsville. "UT-Brownsville is a top program in the country," said Larkin. "They don't plan to win; they expect to win. Fasa and her intensity will fit in perfectly." Way to go, Nicole! We're proud of you.
February 13, 2014
The Lady Hawks are proud to announce that sophomore libero Kim Valverde has accepted a roster spot at University of Tampa. It was Kim's desire to stay in Tampa for her bachelor's degree. We are very proud of her for this achievement. We will be cheering you on in 2015 as UT makes a run at a national championship.
Congratulations! HCC Volleyball is also pleased to announce that freshman MB Katora Roberts has accepted a scholarship to play for Albany State University in Georgia. We are sad to see her leave, but Katora will be close to family and on her way to her 4-yr degree. Way to go, Katora!
February 3, 2014
Congratulations to Rachell Vargas-Comme from Southwest Senior HS in Miami, FL who has committed to play for the Lady Hawks. "Rachell is a very instinctive blocker and a great athlete," explained Larkin. "We really enjoyed getting to know her. Her competitive spirit will fit nicely with our team." Welcome to the Hawks family!
January 21, 2014
HCC Lady Hawks Volleyball is pleased to announce the signing of Erika Zembyla. Welcome to HCC Erika!
January 9, 2014
Congratulations to Nicole Higgins who has accepted a scholarship to East Carolina University, beginning this January! Nicole is excited to become a pirate and has been busy preparing for the move. "Nicole was an amazing Captain and leader in our program," said Larkin. "We're so proud of her and excited to see her compete at the next level."
December 29, 2013
HCC is excited announce the commitment of OH/MB Erika Zembyla from Cyprus. Erika has competed on the Cyprus women's national and junior national teams and competed as her country's #1 beach team. "As we got to know Erika better, we understood that she is driven and goal-oriented," said Larkin. "We believe her competitive spirit and poised on-court demeanor are a natural fit for HCC." Welcome to the Lady Hawk family!
December 24, 2013
HCC signed S/OH Natalie Colon. Natalie comes to us from Puerto Rico by way of Blinn College where she redshirted. "Natalie will begin training as a setter immediately," explained Larkin. "She has the maturity, intangibles, and athleticism to play the position. We are excited to start her journey as a setter."
HCC also added redshirt freshman Heather Getman to the roster. She comes to HCC from CSI and St. James, FL. "Heather is tenacious in her pursuit of her goals," remarked Larkin. "I believe she will be 'all in' when it comes to training and development."
The Lady Hawks welcome the two newest members to the HCC Volleyball family.
"These are two wonderful Christmas presents."
December 5, 2013
Congratulations to Andrea Tauai who was named 1st Team All-American. She is HCC Volleyball's 6th All-American since 2006. "She is a credit to Junior College Volleyball," said Larkin. "Players like her make coaches look smart."
November 26, 2013
CONGRATULATIONS COACH LARKIN!!
AVCA Two-Year College Northeast-Southeast Region Coach of the Year - NJCAA Division I
In his 11th year as the head coach of Hillsborough Community College, Larkin has continued to run one of the top programs in NJCAA’s Division I. In 2013, the No. 5 seed Lady Hawks finished third in the National Championships after defeating Salt Lake in five sets. Outside hitter Andrea Tauai garnered All-Tournament honors after smashing 23 kills on .400 hitting with 11 digs in the third place match. The 41 victories recorded at the helm of the Lady Hawks is the highest win total since 2006 when his squad notched 39 victories, and is 12 more than a year ago that saw them finish with a 29-14 record. This is the third AVCA Northeast/Southeast Region Coach of the Year honor for Larkin after winning it in 2008 and 2012.
November 24, 2013
Final Report from the 2013 NJCAA D-I National Championships in Casper, WY
It's 4am, and the 2013 Lady Hawks are currently sleeping on a bus from Casper, WY to the Denver airport in order fly back to the Florida sunshine. The team will return not only with their gear, but also with a piece of history.
HCC came back from an 0-2 deficit to defeat Salt Lake Community College 15-3 in the decisive 5th set to win the 3rd place match. "Finishing 3rd in the nation is so good!" exclaimed MB Joahnnie Astacio-Rivera.
"When we walked by the trophy table during warm-ups, our team noticed their was no trophy for 4th place," explained Larkin. "After that they were like a pitbull on a ham sandwich."
The Lady Hawks defeated perennial national powers Missouri State-West Plains, Iowa Western Community College, and Salt Lake Community College on route to 3rd place. Their sole defeat was to eventual champion Blinn College.
"Coming back from 0-2 to dominate the way we did shows tremendous character," said Larkin. "I was so happy to see them play their best volleyball at the time it was needed most. You could see the respect in the eyes of their peers and the other coaches."
"It is a special accomplishment for these student athletes. They train relentlessly; they juggle school work in hotel lobbies; they monitor their diets; they play through aches and pains, and they make personal sacrifices," continued Larkin. "There is no special treatment or allowances made by the college or by my staff. They earn everything they get. And that's why they will be successful later in life."
Andrea Tauai was named to the All-Tournament Team for the second year in a row. "She does it all for us," explained Associate Head Coach Monica Medvid. "She terminates, blocks, passes, digs, leads... she fills up the stat sheet every night."
When asked about winning the prestigious honor for the 2nd year in a row, Andrea commented, "It's a team sport. I can't win this without all of my amazing teammates. The 3rd place finish is what's important to us-- that and sharing it with our families, friends, and fans who stayed up to midnight to watch us play."
The volleyball memories weren't the only memories made. The Lady Hawks were treated to some Wyoming hospitality, a trip up Casper Mountain, and some snowmobiling and sledding. Sophomore Becca Conrad (Ohio native and one of the few players used to the snow) said, "They were so great to invite us to their home and treat us so nicely. We made memories that will last a lifetime." When libero Fasa Gonzalez from Puerto Rico was asked about the snow, she said, "It's so cold. It's a lot like ice only softer and a lot like water only harder... I don't know... I guess some like to live in it, but I WON'T. I think I'll just visit it."
Assistant Coach Breviario like Medvid played for the Lady Hawks. Neither played in the national championships, but now they regularly help lead HCC teams to the tournament. Assistant Coach, Alyssa Breviario, commented. "I missed making it to nationals by one year as a player. It is so rewarding to be a part of HCC history now as a coach."
The Lady Hawks finish 41-5 and with a conference championship, district championship, state championship, and a 3rd place finish in the nation. Not too shabby, ladies...
What's next for the Lady Hawks? Turkey and a lot of school work probably.
"The 2014 campaign starts tomorrow," said Larkin. "Tonight I'll celebrate with my family and a couple of donuts."
November 10, 2013
HCC finishes as THE BEST TEAM in the state! The day started with a 4-set win over a gritty FSCJ team coached by the magician Jose Rivera. "Jose pulled out all the stops. We had chess pieces all over the board, but our girls adapted and survived," said Larkin. The Hawks were led by Andy Tauai's 18 kills and .550 hitting %. Antia Rodriguez chipped in with 11, hitting .450, and Shelby Walker added 11 hitting .430. The team totaled 14 blocks, and Kim Valverde led with 16 digs. With the win, HCC punched their ticket to Casper and the NJCAA National Championships, and gave Larkin win number 300.
"So many of our ex-players made the drive up to share in the moment. It was so special," said Larkin. Associate head coach Monica Medvid said, "It's an HCC thing. We're a family... forever."
After CFC got past a tough SCF team from the Suncoast Conference, HCC faced off with them for the FSCAA state championship. "Lonnie and his terrific team from SCF chopped some wood for us," explained Larkin. "They gave CFC all they could handle."
HCC was to meet CFC for the 4th time. HCC won two and lost one. "I'm a horrible coach in the state final," said Larkin. "My goal to to put the girls on the big stage at nationals, we accomplished that by beating FSCJ. The state final is icing on the cake and is all about their will and drive."
Captain Andy Tauai said, "Our team motto was enterprise because 'we'll pick you up.' We knew coach trusted us and that we had it in us. I'm so proud of my teammates."
Well, HCC had the drive and determination. They grinded out tough sets, mounted comebacks, and played aggressively when it mattered most. Tournament MVP Mariam Maldonado led the Hawks with 53 assists, 8 kills, 1.5 blocks, and an ace. Andy Tauai tallied 19 kills, hitting .370, and Shelby Walker posted 13 kills and 6 blocks.
All tied up at two sets apiece, the Lady Hawks jumped out to a 4-1 lead in set 5 and never looked back. HCC prevailed 15-12 to win their second state championship and 6th trip to the national championships.
Nicole Higgins, Antia Rodriguez, and Andy Tauai were named to the All-state Tournament Team. Setter Mariam Maldonado was named Tournament MVP. Coach Larkin was named FCSAA State Coach of the Year.
"The girls developed character today that will stay with them forever," reflected Larkin. "I'm so impressed by these 13 young women. They epitomize what it is to be a student athlete. Pride isn't a strong enough word for what I feel."
When asked how she feels about the trip to Casper, Freshman lieutenant Erin Wibert said, "Giddyup!"
When asked if HCC has what it takes to make a run at a national championship, Carmen Fernandez said, "If we can survive Becca's dancing and Mari and Fasa's singing on the bus, we can do anything."
HCC will travel Tuesday the 19th. All matches be will online. Girls, get your earmuffs and mittens!
November 9 , 2013
Step 2. Check. The Lady Hawks swept SCF in a tough 2nd round match. "The Suncoast Conference is ridiculous. I respect those teams and coaches, but seriously, it's OK if we don't see each other for a while," joked Larkin. "Now we have to turn our attention to Jax or Indian River."
HCC was led by Nicole Higgins's 10.5 points and Andy Tauai's 12 points. In set 1, Tessa Moeller came off the bench and took some big swings for the Hawks to aid in a pivotal comeback. "In our first timeout of set 2, our girls contemplated the strategy of totally freaking out," said Larkin. "I told them it was an interesting plan, but that chaos and insanity wasn't the best course of action at this time."
In set 3, the Lady Hawks controlled tempo on the heels of 5 total blocks in the set. When asked about the blocking in set 3, Shelby Walker said, "Our blocking is sick."
HCC plays for a bid to the national championships Sunday at 9:30.
November 9, 2013
HCC takes down Polk for the 4th straight time to advance to round 2. The Lady Hawks were led by Mariam Maldonado who posted 11 kills and a block and Nicole Higgins who posted 9 kills and 2 blocks in the sweep. HCC will face SCF at 10am.
In other news Andy Tauai and Shelby Walker were named to the All-state team. "The individual awards are wonderful and deserved, but we are here for a bigger prize," explained Larkin. "Our players understand that."
All state matches may be viewed at psblive.com.
October 29, 2013
Congrats to Andy Tauai for being named Suncoast Conference Player of the Year. Joining her on 1st Team All-Conference are Shelby Walker, Mariam Maldonado, and Nicole Higgins. Players named to 2nd Team All-Conference include Carmen Fernandez and Antia Rodriguez.
Way to go, ladies!
Coach Larkin was named Conference Coach of the Year despite protests by HCC equipment manager Kiki Keller and HCC trainer Ernie Black...
"Individual rewards reflect team play," explained Larkin. "Our players understand that."
It is the third straight year (Rachel Powell '11, Jenna Kirkwood '12) that an HCC player was named conference player of the year.
"Coach awards, on the other hand, are a reflection of unique and dynamic leadership by extraordinary individuals," joked Larkin. "Seriously, this team has made me look smart all year. When they start steering the ship, then I know I have something special."
October 25, 2013
With the home schedule nearly complete, the Lady Hawk Volleyball Team would like to sincerely thank SGA for their wonderful game day promotions and kind gestures toward our players. In addition, we wish to thank all the wonderful fans that provided a true home court advantage including Henry the Hawk, the SGA fan mob, all the HCC sports teams, and of course family and friends. We will continue to do our best to make you all proud!
October 25, 2013
Lady Hawks prevail on sophomore night 3-0 vs PHCC. HCC saw contributions from all 8 sophomores. "It was nice to see them out there competing and winning together," said Larkin. "There were a lot of families in stands beaming with pride." The Hawks were led by Andy Tauai's 16 points and Shelby Walker's 13 points.
#4 HCC hosts #6 IWCC Friday at 1:30pm at HCC.
October 23, 2013
Congratulations Andy!! Selected as FCSAA Offensive Player of the Week AND NJCAA Player of the Week!!
Andrea Tauai (So, Tauranga, New Zealand) a 5’9” outside hitter from (#4) Hillsborough Community College, is the FCSAA Player of the Week for the third time. Tauai had 54 kills (4.15/set) while hitting 0.465 as the Lady Hawks went 5-0. She added 45 digs (3.46/set), 9 blocks and 2 aces. She is currently ranked 10th in the nation (njcaa.org) for kills with 402, 14th for kills per set with 3.83 and 10th for points with 478.5.
October 19, 2013
The #4 Lady Hawks win 4 more at Lake Sumter State College. The 2013 Hawks achieved another first: 30 wins in the regular season.
HCC opened against NJCAA DIII power Ridgewater from Minnesota. The Hawks prevailed in straight sets, recording 20 total blocks. Shelby Walker had 4.5, Andy Tauai had 4, Nicole Higgins had 4, and Mariam Maldonado had 3.
The Hawks then defeated Pensacola State 3-0, hitting .490 as a team. Andy hit .770 and Shelby hit .640.
On Saturday, HCC posted a 3-1 win against St. John's River State College. The Lady Hawks saw contributions from all players. Carmen Fernandez posted 27 of a team total 104 digs.
Finally, to earn their 30th win, HCC held off a feisty Eastern Florida State College, sweeping them in 3. The team tallied 8 aces, including 2 each from Andy, Madi, and Shelby.
"We had some fun together as a team this weekend. The Suncoast Conference Season is pretty stressful, so it was nice to just play for the love of the game again. Now we're all excited to continue training for our final push to states," said Larkin.
HCC is 30-2, 8-0.
Come and celebrate sophomore night with the Lady Hawks Thursday night at 7pm vs PHCC.
October 17, 2013
In the their first match of the week, the Lady Hawks defeated #17 SCF-Manatee in straight sets in the conference finale. HCC went undefeated in conference play on the way to a second straight conference title. The first two sets were tight, but the Lady Hawks played with poise and confidence winning 25-21 and 25-23 before closing out the Manatees 25-9. "The gym was electric tonight," said Larkin. "SGA, Henry the Hawk, and the baseball team really energized our team."
Andrea Tauai had 14 kills and middle blockers Shelby Walker and Nicole Higgins combined for 13 kills and 3.5 blocks. Reigning state player of the week Mariam Maldonado dished out 29 assists and posted 8 kills and 3 blocks including an emphatic solo block at match point. HCC travels to Lake Sumter State College for an Invitational Tournament Friday morning.
October 16, 2013
Congratulations to Mariam Maldonado who was selected as FCSAA Player of the Week!!
Mariam Maldonado (So, Arecibo, Puerto Rico) a 5’9” setter from (#2) Hillsborough Community College, is the FCSAA Player of the Week. She is the first setter to be chosen as the player of the week. Maldonado was the center of a Lady Hawk attack that went 4-1 this week. The sophomore totaled 232 assists during that five-match stretch, averaging 11.05 per set. She had 25 kills with a .362 hitting percentage and 6 aces. On defense, she had 54 digs (2.57/set) with a total of 19 blocks. She is currently ranked 12th in the nation (njcaa.org) for total sets with 875 and 17th in assists per set with 9.62.
October 15, 2013
Congratulations to Shelby Walker and Andy Tauai for being selected to theTournament of Champions All Tournament Team!
October 13, 2013
The Lady Hawks went 3-1 at the Jacksonville Tournament of Champions to go to 25-2. "It's been a busy week, but the added stress on the team is building character," explained Larkin. "I like where we are right now. Some players are poised to turn a corner."
Nicole Gonzalez served tough against Pensacola tallying 4 aces on way to a 3-0 sweep of the Pirates. Against Palm Beach, Mariam Maldonado kept the Panthers off balance by spreading the ball around to multiple attackers and securing a second sweep. The team posted 11 total blocks.
On Saturday, after going up 2-1 against CFC, the Lady Hawks gave up sets 4 and 5 to suffer their second defeat of the season. It was the 3rd meeting between HCC and CFC in 2013; HCC leads the series 2-1. "CFC wanted it more than us today," said Larkin. "I'm not sure our team liked how that loss felt. I suspect it was a powerful lesson." Shelby Walker had 18.5 points and Andrea Tauai had 22.5 points to lead the Hawks.
In the final match, HCC faced Polk State for the 3rd time. The Lady Hawks swept the Eagles for the 2nd time in 48 hours. Andrea Tauai hit .520 in the match to lead HCC.
When asked what the team needs to do in training next week, freshman OH Antia Rodriguez noted, "We must train like it could be taken away from us. Without volleyball, there would be no joy."
On Thursday, HCC hosts SCF with the conference championship on the line. HCC will "white out the gym," so wear your white! Play begins at 7pm.
October 11, 2013
Lady Hawk Volleyball would like to thank the college for a great pep rally at Hawks Landing and the great turnout for the Polk State rivalry match. Even the Hawk took time out of his busy schedule to pump up the fans. HCC won in straight sets. The Hawks were led by setter Mariam Maldonado and libero Carmen Fernandez. Top point scorers include Shelby Walker who hit .422 and Andy Tauai who posted 13 kills. The team posted 12 blocks. HCC travels to Jacksonville in the morning for the Tournament of Champions. First match is 3pm.
"We will be tested this weekend. I'm looking forward to building character and dealing with adversity," explained Larkin. "It's all about getting better.
"Frosh MB Joahnnie Astacio added, "If you can't run with the big dogs, they you need to stay on the porch. We like running with the big dogs."
The Hawks are 22-1, 7-0.
October 9 , 2013
HCC moves up to 2nd in the nation! In the latest poll, HCC moved up one spot to 2nd. "We have a challenging week ahead of us. We're excited to battle. Our players learn and grow from every opportunity," explained Larkin. "It's a lot of fun." Last night in Avon Park, HCC defeated SFSC in 4 sets to go 6-0 in conference. The Lady Hawks saw strong contributions from Katora Roberts, Antia Rodriguez, and Joahnnie Astacio. On Thursday night, HCC plays Polk State at home at 7pm. Wear your pink to support breast cancer awareness.
October 8, 2013
Congratulations to Andy Tauai!!
Andrea Tauai (So, Tauranga, New Zealand) a 5’9” outside hitter from (#3) Hillsborough Community College, is the FCSAA Player of the Week. The sophomore was a contributor on both sides of the ball with 60 kills (3.75/set), .328 hitting percentage and 4 aces. On defense, Tauai had 52 digs (3.25/set) with a total of 10 blocks. The Lady Hawks had a perfect 4-0 record. She is currently ranked 14th in the nation (njcaa.org) for kills per set with 3.86 and 12th for points per set with 4.7. This is her second time being chosen as the player of the week for the state of Florida. During week 5, she was also chosen as the NJCAA Division I volleyball Player of the Week.
October 4, 2013
The Lady Hawks win two more to go to 20-1 on the season.
HCC defeated Eastern Florida State in straight sets. The Hawks were led by Shelby Walker's 15.5 points and by Andy Tauai's 12 points. In the second match, the Hawks took down Webber International JV in straight sets as well. HCC was led by Tessa Moeller's 10 points and Becca Conrad's 8.5 points. Carmen Fernandez averaged 15 digs per match, and Mariam Maldonado averaged 11 assists per set throughout the day. "Mariam and Carmen got after it today," said Larkin. Sophomore libero Fasa Gonzalez added, "Whoop, Whoop!"
HCC travels to South Florida State on Tuesday for a 7pm conference match.
October 4, 2013
The Lady Hawks defeated SPC for the second time in conference play in a 5-set thriller. After going up 2-0, SPC rallied back to even the match at 2-2. HCC then settled down and pulled away with the score 10-10 to win 15-10. Andy Tauai posted 18 kills, 2.5 blocks, and an ace. Nicole Higgins posted 7 kills and 5.5 blocks, and setter Mariam Maldonado posted 9 kills, 1 block, an ace, and 13 digs. "It was another nail biter," said Larkin. "Our home crowd really energized us tonight. Mariam made some big plays at the end to seal the win." It is HCC's 11th straight win. The Hawks are 18-1 and 5-0 in conference play. HCC travels to Eastern Florida State for a tri-match on Friday.
October 2, 2013
The #3 Lady Hawks went on the road and defeated the #19 Manatees in a tough 5-setter. "Andy put us on her back tonight," explained Larkin. "I'm thrilled we came away with a win. SCF was great tonight." Andy Tauai had 25 kills, 3 aces, and 2.5 blocks. Nicole Higgins added 10 kills. "We're getting every opponent's best shot right now," continued Larkin. "We have to measure up to the challenge." The Lady Hawks play SPC at home on Thursday night at 7pm. HCC moved to 17-1, 4-0 in conference play.
September 28, 2013
HCC returned from PHCC with another win Thursday night. The team was led by Andy Tauai who had 10 kills and 5 blocks and Shelby Walker who had 9 kills and 4 blocks. Setter Mariam Maldonado led the team in defense with 16 digs. (Who says setters don't play defense?!) "Some of Andy's solo blocks were reminiscent of the national championships last year," said Larkin. "It was impressive."
On Friday, the Hawks traveled to Daytona and faced Palm Beach in their first match. Nicole Higgins posted 6 kills on 9 attempts and added a block. In the next match against host Daytona State, the Lady Hawks got 10 kills from outside hitter Antia Rodriguez and 4 aces from Carmen Fernandez. "Nicole, Antia, and Carmen are hard workers. I was happy to see them all contribute. They are important pieces of our puzzle," explained Larkin.
When asked if there was any added pressure with the ranking of 3rd in the nation, Sophomore Shelby Walker said, "We usually have a bullseye anyway. Maybe it's bigger this year. We just focus on the match we're playing and supporting each other."
HCC plays conference rival SCF in Bradenton Tuesday night at 7pm.
September 27, 2013
The Lady Hawks would like to thank Kelly Ring and Fox 13 for coming out and visiting the team. Check out the great story if you haven't seen it. It was part of "What's Right in Tampa Bay." The student athletes had a blast sharing their story!
September 26, 2013
After being named FCSAA Player of the Week, Andy Tauai was named NJCAA National Player of the Week. Congratulations!!
September 25, 2013
On the heels of a 4-set win against #16 Polk State, the Lady Hawks move up to 3rd place in the NJCAA National Poll. Way to go, ladies!
September 24, 2013
Since the last news post, the Hawks have been up to some winning. Last Thursday night, HCC defeated SPC 3-1 at SPC. The following morning the Hawks played host to IRSC and SJRSC. HCC defeated both teams in straight sets to go to 12-1, 2-0 in conference.
On Tuesday night, HCC faced conference rival Polk State at Polk State. "Polk is an excellent program with an excellent staff and players," said Larkin. "It's always fun and challenging to play them." HCC came out strong in set 1 winning 25-20. Polk battled back to even in 1 set apiece. In set 3, HCC battled to a 25-21 win. In set 4, The Lady Hawks took control and closed out the match 25-12.
"We learned a ton tonight," added Larkin. "We'll grow from this battle."
Reigning player of the week, Andy Tauai had 24 points, and Shelby Walker added 20.5 points.
Thanks to our local Lakeland fans for coming out and supporting the Hawks!
September 24, 2013
Congrats to Andy Tauai who was named the FCSAA state player of the week!
September 21, 2013
Thank you to all the high school teams who participated in the Lady Hawk Invitational. Congratulations to Champion Durant High School coached by Brittany Wilson. Tournament MVPs are Durant's Lexi Thompson and Kelsey Morton. All tournament members include:
All tournament team: Lakeland-Lexi Hicks, George Jenkins-Kaitlin Boyd, Durant-Annie Quinn, Steinbrenner-Lauren Heldt, Plant city-Noelle Dietrich, East Bay-Lauren Howell, Sickles-Lauryn Nelson, Manatee-Shannon Winder, and Bloomingdales-Karissa Rhoades
See you next year!
September 20, 2013
The Lady Hawks played its first match in front of the home crowd last night. HCC prevailed in straight sets over South Florida State College. It was great to see members of SGA in the crowd. All-American alumnus, Madi Gonzalez was also in the crowd cheering on her sister Nicole. “Our team came out ready to play in front of the home fans,” said Larkin. “I think our students and fans were impressed by our team’s tenacity.” Hawk Radio and TV webcast the match, so that families could enjoy the match from their living rooms. The Lady Hawks were led by Andrea Tauai’s 4.5 blocks and 11 kills and Nicole Higgins 3.5 blocks and 9 kills. The team collected 12 total blocks and 56 digs. “When we are dialed in on defense, we can be frustrating to play against,” added Larkin. “Tonight we were tough defensively.” The Hawks are 10-1, 2-0 in conference, and 4th in the NJCAA National Poll. HCC hosts IRSC and SJRSC on Friday at 10 and 2.
September 18 , 2013
HCC moves up to 4th in the nation!
The Lady Hawks began conference play at SPC on Tuesday night. The Hawks prevailed 3-1. “We’ve laid some eggs in this gym in the past; SPC plays very well with the home court advantage,” remarked Larkin. “We’re excited to start conference play 1-0.” HCC was led by Andrea Tauai’s 20 kills. Erin Wibert came off the bench to add 4 kills and a .570 hitting %. Shelby Walker and Nicole Higgins added 8 and 7 kills respectively, and Joahnnie Astacio posted a perfect line killing all 4 sets she was given. Tonight HCC scrimmages University of Tampa at Tampa at 7pm and then resumes conference play Thursday night at the home opener versus South Florida State College at 7pm.
It was nice to see alumni families, the Binghams (Emily 2010) and the Kirkwoods (Jenna 2012) at SPC cheering on the Hawks.
September 13, 2013
The #6 Lady Hawks go into hostile territory and defeat #9 CFC in Ocala 25-19, 25-15, 21-25, 25-14. "It's an emotional environment," said Coach Larkin. "The Patriot staff coaches with emotion; the Patriot players play with emotion; even the concession stand attendant sells hot dogs with emotion. Our players showed poise when it counted."
Andy Tauai led all scorers with 17 kills, and the team attacked .270 collectively. The team blocking, however, may have been the biggest advantage. "19 blocks in 4 sets is solid production," explained Larkin. Joahnnie Astacio tallied 5 blocks, and Antia Rodriguez and Shelby Walker added 4 each to pace the Hawks.
The offense was skillfully led by setters Mariam Maldonado and Carmen Fernandez, and libero Kim Valverde passed 2.4 and added 17 digs.
"Tomorrow morning we go back to work. That's what we do here," remarked RS hitter Nicole Higgins.
September 11, 2013
The Lady Hawks achieved their highest ranking in the NJCAA National Poll this week earning the 6th spot. "It's all about the hard work the players have put in," remarked Larkin. "HCC is known for peaking late, so this early success is merely icing on cake. We aren't close to the team we are going to be." The Lady Hawks travel to CFC on Thursday and begin conference play at SPC Tuesday night at 7pm.
The first home match is Thursday night at 7pm vs. South Florida State College.
September 8, 2013
The Lady Hawks look to move up in the polls this week after a 7-1 start. Currently #14, HCC traveled to Houston and took 2nd in the San Jacinto Invitational. The Hawks took on probable national championships participant Hill College defeating them 3-1. "Hill made very few mistakes. It was a great match," remarked Larkin. The team posted a .270 hitting %, 15.5 blocks, and 2.3 SR. Andy Tauai contributed 19.5 pts and Shelby Walker added 17 pts. In the second match, HCC swept non-member school Victoria college. The team was led by Mariam Maldonado's 33 assists and 5 kills on 6 attempts.
The following day HCC faced two teams who earned bids to last year's national championships. The Lady Hawks convincingly beat Western Texas 3-0 and was led by 15 kills by Andy Tauai and 7 kills each from Nicole Higgins, Shelby Walker, and Antia Rodriguez. With a 3-0 record, HCC faced #4 San Jac for the tourney championship. After letting set 1 slip by 24-26 and then giving up set 2, Larkin switched up the personnel. Carmen Fernandez came on to set the freshman who battled back to take sets 3 and 4. The match went to the wire, and HCC narrowly lost 13-15 in the 5th set. "I was proud of our young players, and our team is still a work in progress. We learned a lot from the moment," explained Larkin. The Lady Hawks were led by Antia Rodriguez's 11.5 pts and the team's 17.5 blocks including 6 from birthday girl Joahnnie Astacio.
Andrea Tauai was named to the All-Tournament Team.
HCC will travel to Ocala for a rematch against Central Florida College on Thursday night.
September 3, 2013
Shelby Walker (So, Bradenton, FL) a 6’1” middle blocker from Hillsborough Community College, is the FCSAA Player of the Week. Walker had 34 kills (2.43/set) with 9 digs.
She is ranked 11th (njcaa.org) in the nation with a .422 hitting percentage. Walker had a big performance at the net on defense with 23 blocks (1.64/set). She was the team points leader (5 aces, 15 kills and 7 blocks), which contributed to a win against #5 Central Florida.
September 2, 2013
HCC opened the 2013 volleyball season by going 4-0 in its home invitational. Wearing the new Navy and Gold colors, the Lady Hawks started the tournament by sweeping St. John's River State College and Palm Beach State College. Against SJRS, middle blocker Shelby Walker led the team with 13.5 points. Against PBSC, outside hitter Andy Tauai hit .450 posting 10 kills, an ace, and 2.5 blocks. Walker added 8 aces, 5 kills, and 1.5 blocks. On Saturday, HCC faced an imposing Daytona State College team. Right side hitter Nicole Higgins led all attackers with 11 kills as HCC again won in 3 straight sets.
The results set up a match-up between two teams with 3-0 records and who are ranked in the national top 20. The #14 Lady Hawks faced #5 Central Florida College. HCC jumped out to a commanding two set lead, winning 25-9, 25-21, before finally closing out the match 15-9 in the fifth set. The team was led by Shelby Walker who posted 5 aces, 7 blocks, and 15 kills. Andy Tauai added 17 kills. "I was proud our players' poise tonight," commented Head Coach, Gary Larkin, "and our setter Mariam Maldonado played courageously. CFC is talented and well-coached, so it is always entertaining." HCC improved to 4-0 and will travel to Houston next weekend to play in San Jacinto's invitational.
At times, the home floor seemed like an away match, so be sure to come out and support your nationally ranked Lady Hawks Volleyball Program! HCC Students, Faculty, and Staff are always free, and it's wicked cool.
August 15, 2013
The Lady Hawks challenged themselves and conquered fears at the ropes course today. They especially enjoyed the mud plunge at the end!
August 4, 2013
Thank you to all alumni, families, and friends who participated in our alumni match! I'm always amazed how players who play but a couple times a year could play at such a high level. I guess you can take the player out of HCC volleyball, but you can't take the HCC volleyball out of the player... See you on the first Saturday of August next year. And don't be strangers this fall. Come see the 2013 team fight for another title!
July 18, 2012
A BIG thank you to Jason Wilson for his donation of $150.00 to the HCC Foundation in support of the 2013 volleyball team. Sponsors like Jason help make the magic happen.
July 7, 2013
Max Attack Volleyball Participants
June 28, 2013
Setting School Members
Defense Camp Members
June 20, 2013
Check out the All Skills Volleyball Camp team members!
April 24, 2013
Jenna Kirkwood was named Co-Female Athlete of the Year at this year's athletic banquet. Congrats, Jenna!
April 24, 2013
HCC Volleyball welcomes Erin Wibert 5'11" OPP/MB from George Jenkins HS and Tampa United. "Erin is a feisty winner," says Larkin. "She can play multiple positions and is ready to take the next step. Her work ethic will serve her well at HCC." Welcome, Erin!
April 17, 2013
The Lady Hawks wrapped up the 2012 season with a wonderful athletic banquet at the DoubleTree Westshore. Our players enjoyed the chance to interact with fellow student athletes and celebrate everyone’s successes this year. The volleyball awards went to the following players.
Twin Towers Award: Zoe Sostre and Francesca Indoni
Versatility Award: Shelby Smith
Defensive Player of the Year: Yaidimar Santiago
Most Outstanding Player: Andy Tauai
Lady Hawk Volleyball Award: Jenna Kirkwood
Congratulations, Ladies. It was a terrific end to a terrific year!
March 31, 2013
HCC is pleased to announce the signing of Antia Rodriguez Sanchez OH of Spain. "Antia brings a vast amount of experience, a high volleyball IQ, and a drive for excellence. She's another excellent piece of our team's puzzle," explained Coach Larkin. "I am very excited by this recruiting class. We're going to have a lot of fun."
March 25, 2013
The Hawks wrapped up the beach tri-match season at St. Pete Beach with a sweep over SFSC and a close loss to SPC. HCC and SPC had two wins apiece when Nicole Higgins and Carmen Fernandez pushed the match to the 3rd game before narrowly losing. "For our first year competing regularly on the beach, I am very pleased with the results and the effort," explained Larkin. "We will improve on this experience in years to come." The duos of Sostre and Indoni and Valverde and Conrad took two wins each on the day. The players greatly enjoyed the beach and will end the beach season by participating in the college beach event, the Fiesta on Siesta April 13th.
March 14, 2013
The Lady Hawks welcome Katora Roberts!!
March 10, 2013
The Lady Hawks played their second beach event, hosting a tri-match vs SCF and Polk State. SCF got revenge against the Hawks reversing the result from last week and winning 4-1. SCF then defeated Polk State in match two. The Lady Hawks rebounded in their last match, sweeping Polk State 5-0. HCC was led by the two Nicoles (Higgins and Gonzalez) who won both their matches on the day. HCC plays its last beach event in two weeks on St. Pete Beach.
March 6, 2013
Congratulations Shelby & Francesca!!
Congratulations to Shelby Smith who committed to UWF. Shelby will be the 4th Lady Hawk to play for Coach Wolters. Congrats, Shelby! We'll be watching.
MB Francesca Indoni committed to Queens College in NY this week. Francesca will play for ex-Plant HS coach Leanna Taylor. As a graphic design major, Francesca is excited about being in the metropolitan area. Good luck Franny and stay warm up there!
March 1, 2013
The Lady Hawks had a great day at Siesta Key Beach as they defeated SCF 4-1 in their first dual beach match. All but the number 1 seeds prevailed with seeds 3,4,5 going to the 3rd and deciding set. "It was awesome to see the girls competing again," said Coach Larkin. "SCF was well prepared for beach play, so I was impressed by our team's ability to control the match. It was high level play all around." Shelby Smith and Andy Tauai played especially strong, anchoring their respective pairs.
HCC will play a beach tri-match next Friday at Causeway Beach, adjacent to Hogan's Restaurant. Play starts at 10am.
February 11, 2013
The Lady Hawks would like to welcome their 3rd signing of the 2013 recruiting class. Katora Roberts, a 5'11" MB from Winter Haven HS, verbally committed this week. "Katora has not only strength and athleticism, but also great enthusiasm for the game. It will be fun to watch her develop over her time here," explained Coach Larkin. Welcome to HCC, Katora!
January 30, 2013
Congratulations to Jenna Kirkwood who has recently committed to play for Valdosta St. in Georgia. Jenna was a 2nd Team All-American at HCC and looks forward to the next challenge. The Lady Hawk family will be rooting for you!
January 25, 2013
The Lady Hawks signed their second recruit for the 2013 campaign. HCC is pleased to welcome Joahnnie Astacio-Rivera, a 6'1" MB from Bayamon Military Academy in Puerto Rico. "We have had a number of impact players from Joahnnie's high school, and we know she will continue that tradition," explained Coach Larkin. "She moves fluidly and has a desire to grow as a player. She'll be a great fit."
January 14, 2013
The Lady Hawks received its first verbal commitment this weekend. HCC is very pleased to welcome Tessa Moeller, a 5'11" OH. Tessa is 6-rotation OH from Germany who possesses typical European fundamentals. "Certainly Tessa's skills will help our team continue to compete at the highest level, but in addition, her personality is a great fit and will undoubtedly mesh well with our returning players," commented Larkin. "We have targeted some terrific players this winter and look forward to a few more signings early this spring. Stay tuned."
January 6, 2013
Congratulations to sophomore Jedi (Yaidimar Santiago) who has signed with St. Leo University! Jedi is the third Lady Hawk to sign with St. Leo, following Emily Calderon in 2008 and 2011 setter Rachel Powell who transferred from McNeese State University. We can't wait to watch you excel.
December 3, 2012
Check out this video:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9JMnJ6MWQ4Y
November 30, 2012
Congratulations to Jenna Kirkwood who was named 2nd Team All-American. It is HCC's 5th All-American. Way to go Jenna! Your coaches, team, friends, and family are all so proud of you!
November 26, 2012
Congratulations Coach Larkin!!
Gary Larkin was named AVCA Northeast/Southeast Region Coach of the Year. It is the second time Larkin has won this award, the last time being in 2008. "Personal awards are a reflection of team," explained Larkin. "My staff and players made it all possible."
Coaches of the Year will be recognized at the Jostens Coach of the Year luncheon at AVCA Convention in conjunction with the NCAA Final Four in Louisville, Kentucky.
November 18, 2012
Lady Hawks 7th in Nation!!
The Lady Hawks continued their stellar play by defeating North Idaho in straight sets. With the win, HCC finishes 7th in the nation. It is the second time HCC finished 7th, the last being 2009. "We were tough today. Last night we finally realized how good we are, and today we played with tremendous poise and confidence," explained Larkin.
The Hawks got 9 kills each from Jenna Kirkwood and Andy Tauai, 8 kills and 3.5 blocks from Zoe Sostre, and 5 kills each from Francesca Indoni and Shelby Smith. "Our sophomores led us out in our last match, and all five played out of their tree," said Larkin. The HCC defense was anchored by Yaidimar Santiago's 29 digs.
OH Andrea Tauai was named to the NJCAA National Championships All-tournament Team.
"It was a dream ending to a terrific season. Our staff of Monica, Alyssa, and Jordan was top notch all year. The character of our players is off the charts, and the love they have for each other is pretty special," noted Larkin.
November 17, 2012
Holy Smokes! Did you see it?! The #8 Lady Hawks narrowly lost to #5 Tyler in 5 sets, 13-15. "It was tremendous volleyball. Coach Shirley has been leading teams to nationals a while now; they were very prepared," explained Larkin. It could have gone either way at the end. I'm extremely proud of the product we put on the floor tonight."
Zoe Sostre had 9 kills and 4.5 blocks out of the middle. Jenna Kirkwood and Andy Tauai chipped in 11 kills and 2 blocks each. Carmen Fernandez provided the setting spark off the bench leading the charge with 3 kills 2 blocks and 44 assists.
"We have an opportunity to play for 7th today. North Idaho is tough, but we will scratch and claw today," said Larkin. "Our players have a certain look in their eyes; it's actually a little scary."
HCC plays North Idaho at noon CST.
November 16, 2012
In round 2 of the NJCAA Championships, #1 College of Southern Idaho proved to be too much to handle for the Lady Hawks, winning in 3 sets. "We never seemed ready for the fight. They are talented to be sure, but perhaps we left our A game on the bus," surmised Larkin. The Lady Hawks tried multiple line-ups and offensive schemes, but none turned the tide. "Our energy in set 3 was much improved, and libero Kim Valverde provided a little spark off the bench for us," explained Larkin. However, it was too little and too late as the Eagles closed out the 3rd set 25-20. "Mature teams turn their attention to the next opponent. That's what we'll do," added Larkin. "Every day is a new opportunity for excellence." The Lady Hawks face #5 Tyler College Friday at 2:30 CST. The winner will play for 5th place, and the loser will play for 7th on Saturday.
November 15, 2012
The Lady Hawks take down the Grizzlies, prevailing in 5. The battle between #8 HCC and #9 Missouri State West Plains lived up to the billing. It was a hotly contested match.
After splitting the two first sets, the home crowd lifted the Grizzlies as they fended of multiple match points eventually winning 31-29. "I told the team they needed to stay in the present. There was nothing we could do to change the past," explained Larkin. "After close losses like that, a team either folds or gets angry. We got angry."
Shelby Walker leapt off the bench and hit .640 contributing 10 kills and 4.5 blocks. "She was like King Kong swatting airplanes out there. Walker was a blocking force," said Larkin. The team posted 22 total blocks led my Maldonado's 5.5 and Sostre's 5.5.
Jenna Kirkwood led all attackers with 18 kills, and Andrea Tauai added 16. Yaidimar Santiago chipped in with 32 digs, and Shelby Smith posted 25. Mariam Maldonado dished out 54 assists.
The good news is the Lady Hawks have reached the Elite 8; the bad news is they face #1 seed College of Southern Idaho. "We're playing with house money," explained Larkin. "We have nothing to lose and everything to gain. We going to play loose and aggressive and see what shakes down."
The scheduled match time vs. CSI is 7:30 pm cst.
November 7, 2012
MB Zoe Sostre commits to Tennessee State University. Congrats Zoe! We're all proud of you.
November 4, 2012
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE LADY HAWKS - HEADING TO NATIONALS!!
The Lady Hawks took the court against MDC with a bid to the NJCAA National Championships on the line. Having suffered one loss, MDC would go home with another loss. Tied at 2 sets apiece, the Lady Hawks took the court for one 15-pt set standing in the way of that bid. Zoe Sostre got hot blocking and attacking and Jenna Kirkwood woke up in set 5, earning 3 tools for points. Andy Tauai continued her stellar play anchoring the charge. HCC switched sides up 8-7 and never looked back, prevailing 15-9. It is the first time since 1988 that MDC will not attend the championships. It is the 5th time for HCC and first since 2009 at which HCC finished 7th in the nation.
"It was such a gritty effort," explained Larkin. "Over the course of the weekend, we were a little off, but we grinded out points when we needed to. I kept expecting our A game to show up, but it was like Where's Waldo and we never found it," laughed Larkin. "Seriously, I couldn't be prouder. Character built this Gulf District Championship. Every team member contributed something along the way. It was a team thing."
When asked how she felt after the Miami match, setter and Lieutenant Mariam Maldonado said... "Good."
HCC faced CFC in the State Championship match, which is essentially for bragging rights, but never mounted a real charge. Associate Head Coach Monica said, "It was anybody's tournament this year. We tried to light a fire under them for the state game but winning the nationals bid took the fight out of the crazed dogs.
The Lady Hawks leave in 10 days for Missouri. "We plan to train hard and then win matches," stated Larkin. "We're going out there and attacking like a pack of Spider Monkeys."
Congratulations to the 2012 Lady Hawks for adding to the legacy of excellence that is HCC volleyball.
Jenna Kirkwood and Andrea Tauai were named to the prestigious All-state Team at the state banquet. Both are eligible for All-American honors.
Carmen Fernandez, Yaidimar Santiago, Jenna Kirkwood, and Andrea Tauai earned All-state tournament team. Congrats, guys!
November 3, 2012
Step 2... Check! The Lady Hawks are one win away from a trip to the NJCAA national Championships. HCC went down 0-2 to SCF and looked like a dead man walking, but miraculously the team centered itself and mounted an improbable and impressive comeback against the talented Manatees.
Andrea Tauai led the Hawks with 19 kills and played strong down the stretch. When asked what she was thinking in set 5, Andrea replied, "Oh, I don't know. I kept telling myself to keep my shoulder closed. I just wanted to stay aggressive."
Setter Mariam Maldonado led the offense and was helped by Carmen Fernandez during a couple rolled ankle incidents. "Mariam may have weak ankles, but she had a strong heart today," joked Larkin. "I've been at this for a decade. What our girls did in such a big match was very rare and special." HCC found contributions from role players DS Nicole Gonzalez and DS Kim Valverde. "To succeed here, you need to play for a greater good, something bigger than yourself. We did that just in time today," concluded Larkin.
HCC will face MDC on Sunday at 9:30am with a trip to nationals on the line.
November 2, 2012
The Lady Hawks passed the first test at the State Tournament in Jacksonville. HCC defeated Polk State 3 sets to 0. Polk had been red hot, defeating MDC last weekend in Tampa, but the Hawks sustained a winning effort. "It's a double elimination tournament, so we might see them again. We have great respect for their program," said Larkin. "For now, it's all about Manatee. They are the next hurdle." Jenna Kirkwood stood out, hitting over .470 with 17 kills, and Shelby Smith and Andrea Tauai contributed 10pts each. Yaidimar Santiago tallied 18 digs and serve received a 2.9.
Saturday's match begins at 10am and may be watched live at http://www.psblive.com/. "We don't need to do big things; we need to do the small things with a full heart."
November 1, 2012
Sophomore night was a huge success! Thank you to all who helped celebrate our sophomores, especially Alumnus Gabi Berrios's mother, Lourdes, who cooked up a delicious pre-game meal! Special thanks also go to coaches Monica, Alyssa, and Jordan who helped make the night special. The Lady Hawks prevailed in a tough 5-setter against the Webber beach team but on this night, it was all about honoring the contributions of 5 special student athletes. Jenna, Jedi, Shelby, Franny, and Zoe-- thanks for the terrific year.But we're not done yet!
October 30, 2012
HCC swept Pensacola State and then was swept by MDC to finish 3-1 at the Halloween Invitational. It was a great weekend as the team attended Howl-O-Scream on Thursday night and the team welcomed many guests including the Valverde's, Maldonado's, Fernandez's, Walker's, Conrad's, and Franny's friend from Italy among others. "The weekend had a family feel to it," said Larkin. "It was great to share our HCC family with the players' families." The Lady Hawks honor the sophomores Tuesday night at 7pm at a scrimmage versus the Webber Beach squad.
October 27, 2012
#11 Lady Hawks start strong at the Halloween Invitational. HCC jumped out beating FSCJacksonville in 4 sets. Andrea Tauai hit .350 on the outside with 15 kills and contributed 19 total points and 22 digs. The Lady Hawks had 18 total blocks. In the next match, HCC dropped the first set but one the next 3 straight sets versus NAIA power Florida College. "Our blocking was solid," explained Larkin. "Shelby Walker was menacing at the net, and Mariam Maldonado was creative running our offense." HCC plays #10 MDC and state participant Pensacola State on Saturday. "When our team plays 'all in' and with a singular goal, this team is as good as any team HCC has put on the floor," stated Larkin.
October 24, 2012
Congratulations to the Lady Hawks Ranked #11
HCC moves up to #11 in the final poll of 2012.
October 24, 2012The results are in! Seven Lady Hawks earn conference awards.
Jenna Kirkwood was named Suncoast Conference Player of the Year, and Gary Larkin was named Suncoast Conference Coach of the Year. "Jenna took a lot of big swings for us during the conference season, and she was a warrior in our final match versus SCF when we needed her," said Larkin. "I'm proud of her." Other players named 1st Team All-conference are Andrea Tauai, Carmen Fernandez, Zoe Sostre, and Francesca Indoni. Yaidimar Santiago was named 2nd Team All-conference. "Individual awards are nice-- you can tell your kids about it one day-- but team awards are how we measure ourselves," explained Larkin. "We still have more work to do."
October 22, 2012
Alumni Emily Bingham helped USC Upstate turn the momentum against ETSU with a timely kill and finished with 14 kills, 4 digs, and 4 assisted blocks out of the middle. The Spartans defeated their conference rivals in 5 sets.
October 20, 2012
The Lady Hawks finished strong at the LSCC tournament sweeping both Polk State and PHCC. "We played well. Everyone contributed. I think the team understands how important on-court chemistry is now," explained Larkin. "And we were fueled by some serious Lake County BBQ cooked up by the Smith Family." HCC started a tradition of tailgating between matches, enjoying some cornhole, can jam, and redneck horseshoes. Good times were had by all. HCC was led by Andy's and Shelby's double double against Polk and Andy's and Madi's double double against Pasco.
Get on the road with the Lady Hawks and travel to PHCC on Tuesday night for the 7pm match. Remember if you're not in, you're out.
October 19, 2012
On Thursday night, HCC falls short at CFC losing in 4. "We blocked and dug well, but we can't sustain our effort and focus. In the set we won, we were disciplined, and we won big and easily," explained Larkin. "One set, however, is not a match."
On the first day of the Lake Sumter Tournament, Larkin had to go to a heavy freshmen line-up down 0-2 to Clearwater Christian. "It's pretty late in the year to still be waiting for leadership and intensity from our sophomore class and Captains. It was fun seeing some frosh who haven't played as much celebrating and enjoying themselves out there. It was contagious," said Larkin. The frosh comeback against CCC fell just short as the Lady Hawks lost in 5, but the same group easily dispatched St. John's River State in straight sets.
Tomorrow HCC faces Polk State and PHCC. "Tomorrow we'll continue to play the girls who are playing for the name on the front of the jersey and not the back," stated Larkin. "Championships are won by special teams not individuals... and I've watched enough individual volleyball this year."
October 18, 2012
Congratulations to Andrea Tauai for being named Player of the Week (Games through October 13th)
Andrea Tauai (Fr, Tauranga, New Zealand) a 5’8” outside hitter from Hillsborough Community College, is the FCSAA Player of the Week. Tauai had 71 kills (3.6/set) and a .290 hitting percentage. On defense, she tallied 59 digs (3/set) and 10.5 total blocks. The Lady Hawks have finished first in the Suncoast Conference and swept Player of the Week selections as we approach the State Tournament.
Congratulations to Yaidimir Santiago for being named Defensive Player of the Week (Games through October 13th)
Yaidimir Santiago (So, Toa Baja, Puerto Rico) a 5’7” libero from Hillsborough Community College, is the FCSAA Defensive Player of the Week. In 15 sets, the sophomore racked up 94 digs (6.3/set), including a 25 dig performance against Illinois Central College. This earned Santiago a spot in the 25 Dig Club.
Congratulations go out again to Andrea Tauai for being named to the All-Tournament Team. Way to go Andrea!!
October 17, 2012
Be sure to read this article on former Lady Hawk Lindsey Rees:
October 14, 2012
As suspected the Lady Hawks were a little emotionally spent getting off the bus in Jacksonville on Friday losing to #4 IWCC in 3 and #11 MDC in 4. "Thursday night was an emotional night for us, and like everyone this time of year, we are nursing some injuries. We had some highlights, though, like Jedi's (Yaidimar Santiago) ridiculous defense," stated Larkin. On Saturday, HCC bounced back, sweeping #19 Pensacola and #19 DII Illinois Central. "With Kirkwood and Sostre on the bench icing, Andy went off," explained Larkin. Andy Tauai averaged over 4 kills a set and Shelby Smith hit .300 and .360 respectfully on the outside. Next up for the Hawks is #8 CFC in Ocala on Thursday night.
October 12, 2012
The Lady Hawks are Conference Champions! HCC swept SCF in 3 sets closing the last set out 25-13. The hawks got strong performances from MB Francesca Indoni and OHs Jenna Kirkwood and Andy Tauai. "We played to win tonight instead of not to lose," explained Larkin. "Our blocking and defense was sound, and Franny was a beast." Setter Mariam Maldonado served up the assists for the Hawks who kept #10 SCF off balance all night. "The black out the gym crowd was awesome. Thanks to all in attendance for their support," added Larkin. Alumni Crissi Dejiulio, Danielle Priest, and Claudia Cabrera came home to support the 2012 team. The Lady Hawks travel to Jacksonville Friday to play a tournament boating 8 nationally ranked teams.
October 10, 2012
HCC survives at SPC. HCC won in 4 utilizing its entire bench. Andrea Tauai led all attackers with 12 kills and a block and Zoe Sostre added 10 kills and 3 blocks. Mariam Maldonado set the final 3 games posting 33 assists and 5 kills. "Good teams grind out wins when they don't have their A game," explained Larkin. "If this team will believe in themselves like we believe in them, they can be special." The Lady Hawks face SCF on Thursday night at 7pm at home with the conference championship on the line. "We need a raucous crowd Thursday night!"
October 5, 2012
HCC improves to 13-6 after two Friday afternoon sweeps at Lake Sumter. In the first match versus LSCC, the Lady Hawks were led by Francesca Indoni's 10 points and Shelby Smith's 9 points. Against Palm Beach State, Kim Valverde posted 25 digs, and Andrea Tauai tallied 11 points and Jenna Kirkwood added 9. The Lady Hawks resume conference play Tuesday night at SPC.
October 5, 2012
The Lady Hawks bumped up to #16 in the nation after defeating South Florida State last Thursday night. On Monday, the team gave back to the community by training the St. Lawrence Middle School volleyball team. All the girls, young and old, had a blast! The STL Celtics are undefeated and on track to win their league championship next week. Tonight HCC faced a red hot Polk State team in Winter Park. It was a match-up with the conference lead on the line. The Lady Hawks grinded out a close first set to lead the match. The Eagles responded by taking set 2 comfortably. In pivotal set 3, Shelby Smith was inserted and was a spark plug. She brought the players to their happy place, and the performance picked up. "We needed to focus on stopping them and team chemistry tonight. Offensively we were OK from the beginning, but we couldn't slow the middle attack. We found a group that worked well together and began to implement the game plan in set 3," explained Larkin. The team travels to Lake Sumter for a tri-match on Friday. Don't forget that Thursday Oct. 11th is "Black Out the Gym" night. The first 100 fans will get a black rally hawk T-shirt featuring the new HCC Hawk Logo. #16 HCC faces #10 SCF at 7pm at the Dale Mabry Gym.
September 26, 2012
HCC breaks into the top 20 at #18. There was no rest for the Lady Hawks, however, as they traveled to #10 SCF on Tuesday night losing 1-3. "It's a tough place to play, and we needed to be more detail oriented and stronger on offense," explained Larkin. "When we earned an advantage during a rally, we had trouble capitalizing." The Hawks battled through a low team hitting percentage to keep it close, but it wasn't enough in the end. Andrea Tauai led the team with 13 kills, 2 aces, and 2 blocks. HCC plays SFSC Thursday night at home at 7pm.
September 21, 2012
The Lady Hawks completed a 6 game win streak with a straight set win versus St. Pete College. "There were some fantastic rallies with amazing defense," noted Larkin. Jenna Kirkwood led the way with 18 kills and a .600 hitting percentage, and Yaidimar Santiago collected 18 digs. HCC plays at SCF on Tuesday at 7pm.
Faces in the Crowd:
Sara Prose, 2004
The Plant City High School Volleyball Team The Attars
Former Lady Hawk Cabrera helps USF on its current 6-game win streak. "Wyle Devlin recorded her fifth double-double with 27 assists and 10 digs. Libero Claudia Cabrera (HCC 2010) continued to be a force in the middle with 18 digs."
September 20, 2012
HCC goes 2-0 in conference play with a strong win over Polk State. The Lady Hawks were led by libero Yaidimar Santiago's 25 digs and outside hitter Andrea Tauai's 12 kills. "Our team had tremendous balance," said Larkin. "Our middles and right had hitting percentages, and Jedi stole a lot of kills tonight on defense."
HCC faces SPC Thursday night at home at 7pm.
September 17, 2012
Georgian Court, which improved to 4-6 despite hitting only .070, received 12 kills and 14 digs from sophomore Villariny-Rodriguez. Jhoan Agosto provided 10 kills. Gabriela Barrios-Hernandez (HCC Alumnus), who earned selection to the All-Tournament Team, topped the team with 16 digs.
September 15, 2012
The Lady Hawks completed a 4-0 week by defeating St. Johns River State College and Indian River State in Palatka. The team improved to 7-5. "We were pretty good today. Some girls stepped up and played big roles when asked," explained Larkin. Against SJRSC, Mariam Maldonado came off the bench to set the team to the win, and MB Shelby Walker provided a big blocking presence in sets 2,3,4. Nicole Gonzalez also contributed as libero. In the second match, MB Franny Indoni leapt off the bench and provided a sustained spark. Standouts on the day include OPP Shelby Smith who posted 20 kills and a .559 hitting percentage, OH Jenna Kirkwood who posted 8 aces and 26 kills, and OH Andrea Tauai who added 3 aces and 22 kills. "Both setters maintained balance in our offense. That was the key to our success today."
HCC plays another conference match at home at 7pm vs. Polk State. Come check us out. It's electric!
Faces In the Crowd This Week:
Alum Hailey Plunkett!
Ex-manager extraordinaire Kristin Fancher!
(and of course our families)
September 14, 2012
The Lady Hawks started and finished strong defeating PHCC in straight sets. "We had great balance, and all the girls understood and played their roles. It was a positive step for us," explained Larkin. #1 attacker in the nation Jenna Kirkwood paced the Hawks with 13 kills. Shelby Smith also added two solo blocks and numerous tags on the right side. Setter Carmen Fernandez led the offense with 35 assists. HCC travels to St. John's River on Saturday for a tri-match.
September 12, 2012
HCC played its first conference match Tuesday night defeating South Florida State in 4. "Everybody contributed in tonight's win. Our conference is strong, so every win counts," said Larkin. The Lady Hawks were led by Jenna Kirkwood's 19 kills, Yaidimar Santiago's 25 digs, Zoe's 10 kills, and Carmen Fernandez's 44 assists.
The Lady Hawks play PHCC at home Thursday night at 7pm.
The Lady Hawks returned from Texas, having played #4, #8, #15. "It was bittersweet," explained Larkin, "to be so close to knocking off nationally ranked teams but coming up a little short. It was a lot like our CFC match. We definitely know we can hang now, so it's time to learn how to close the deal."
The Hawks were paced by Jenna's 72 kills. "Jenna Kirkwood was a monster. She played fearlessly." Other standout performances include Zoe's 10 kills against Blinn, Shelby Walker's 11 kills against Hill, and Nicole Gonzalez's 25 digs against Salt Lake.
September 4, 2012
Alumnus Emily Bingham of USC-Upstate was named to All-tournament team at The Willie Jewell's Invitational at Charleston Southern. Way to go, Em!
The Lady Hawks began their 2012 campaign by going 2-2. The Hawks started quickly by sweeping Palm Beach State and then had multiple match points against an experienced and talented CFC team currently ranked #3 in the nation. Perhaps the close loss carried over to the following morning when HCC lost to SCF. The team concluded with another 3-set sweep versus Brevard. "The match against CFC had a post-season feel to it. Pushing such a talented team without two starters due to injury says a lot about where we could be in November," said Larkin. The players are working very hard, and hard work pays off." MBs Zoe Sostre and freshman Shelby Walker combined to hit over .400, and OH Jenna Kirkwood was consistently asked to take the critical swings and delivered. The Lady Hawks travel to Houston on Thursday to take on the best of Texas.
August 27, 2012
HCC alum Claudia Cabrera leads USF with 28 digs in a 5-set win vs. UCF!
August 24, 2012
Gabi Berrios commits to D2 Georgian Court University in New Jersey. Way to go, Gabi!
August 23, 2012
2012 HCC Volleyball announces its leadership council. The council is made up of 3 Captains (sophomores) and 1 Lieutenant (freshman). Nicole Higgins was named Captain last spring and she is joined by Captains Yaidimar Santiago and Jenna Kirkwood. They are joined by Lieutenant Mariam Maldonado. We know they are all up to the task. Congratulations!
July 27, 2012
HCC Volleyball would like to welcome new Assistant Coach Jordan Gibson. Jordan comes to us with college coaching and playing experience and continues to compete as an accomplished Beach player in the Open Division. We are excited to add his experience and enthusiasm to our staff.
July 14, 2012
Thank you to all the high school teams who competed at HCC this summer. We know you all had a lot of fun and started your preparation for the high school season. Good luck in the fall! See you next year - Coach Larkin.
Results of the HCC Summer Competition Camp: 1. Steinbrenner 2. Durant 3. King 4. Plant 5. East Bay 6. Sickles 7. Middleton
*Bloomingdale and Planty City absent from playoffs.
July 2, 2012
HCC Volleyball is pleased to welcome back volleyball alumnus Alyssa Breviario. Alyssa joins the 2012 staff after graduating in 2005 and subsequently from Northwood University. She has also coached at numerous HCC camps and for Tampa United Volleyball. "Alyssa was a compassionate teammate and has a big heart," said Coach Larkin. "She has traveled and experienced a lot since graduation; that will serve her well as she works with the setters and handles various administrative and team building activities." Alyssa is excited and up for the challenge!
June 11, 2012
HCC Volleyball hosted a rough and tumble crew from St. Lawrence School for a volley totz clinic. Fun was had by all. There were lots of future stars out there!
May 25, 2012
Congratulations to Manager Kristin Fancher who was recently accepted into the HCC nursing program. We're so proud of you!
May 24, 2012
Congratulations to Coach Tony who not only graduated from the USF School of Education but also accepted the Palmetto HS Head Coaching position. We will be cheering Tony on from afar, and he will be missed! Tony was an integral part of HCC Volleyball's run of excellence from 2006 through the 2011 season.
May 14, 2012
The Lady Hawks finished the semester with a team GPA of 3.0, and 6 of 7 sophomores graduated in spring. The 7th will graduate after one summer course. Great job, ladies! Your statistics are WAY above the college averages. Keep it up!
April 9, 2012
HCC is pleased to announce the signing of Kim Valverde of Costa Rica by way of East Hampton, NY. Kim is a jump-serving libero who is anxious to join the competitive atmosphere at HCC. "Kim is a high energy defender who plays with the poise of someone who has been a starter for a number of years. She will help improve our ball control," explained Coach Larkin.
March 23, 2012
HCC is pleased to announce the signing of Carmen Fernandez Nevarez. Carmen has just finished a championship season setting for Bayamon Military Academy. "Carmen's addition solidifies the setting position. It will be fun to watch the intense competition; both setters will develop quickly and push each other to great heights," remarked Larkin. Welcome to the HCC family!
February 1, 2012
HCC is pleased to announce that All-state outside hitter Rebecca Schnabel has signed to play with St. Edward's University in Austin, Texas. After visiting, Becca felt like it was the perfect fit. Go get 'em, Becca!
February 1, 2012
HCC is pleased to announce the commitment of Andrea Tauai. Andrea is a native of New Zealand and a graduate of Tauranga Girls' College HS. She is an OH with extensive junior national and beach experience. "We spent some time getting to know Andrea to see if HCC was the right fit. I have no doubt it is," explained Larkin. "Andrea is a dynamic OH who will do anything in her pursuit of excellence in volleyball. She'll fit it nicely with all of our other gym rats."
January 25, 2012
All-American setter Rachel Powell verbally commits to McNeese State University in Louisiana and Head Coach Terry Gamble. Rachel is excited about the challenge of playing D-I volleyball. Congrats, Rachel. We are proud of you!
January 20, 2012
The HCC Volleyball Team mentored students from Academy Prep Center of Tampa Bay in Ybor City. All had a great time learning some skills and sharing some laughs.
Amani West from Tampa Bay Tech commits to the Lady Hawks. Amani played for Coach Colley at Tech and plays for the Tampa Bay Raptors. "Amani brings athleticism to our outside hitter core. She impressed us with her determination and spirit throughout this process," explained Larkin.
December 21, 2011
HCC is pleased to announce the signing of Becca Conrad. Becca is a versatile outside hitter who comes to us from Ohio. Volleyball is a family tradition for the Conrads, so HCC is pleased to get a player of such experience. "Becca will have the ability to play many roles throughout the season. We like versatility," explained Larkin.
HCC signed Nicole Gonzalez, a dynamic and spirited OH from Toa Baja, Puerto Rico. Nicole is the second Gonzalez to play for the Hawks as older sister Madi played in 2006. "Nicole has a fearless attitude, which will serve her well at HCC," remarked Larkin. "She will fit in nicely with our program's culture."
The Lady Hawks landed middle blocker Shelby Walker from Lakewood Ranch HS where she played for Perry Hankins. She is currently playing at MAV for Nancy Cothron. "Shelby is a physical middle who continues to grow every day," said Larkin. "It will be exciting to watch her develop at HCC; she has a high ceiling."
December 16, 2011
Congratulations to the Lady Hawks Volleyball team for posting a team GPA over 3.0! The team was led by the following student athletes: Becca, Hillary, Kristin, Shelby, Jenna, and Dani. Way to go, guys!
December 1, 2011
Rachel Powell is named 2nd Team All-American and upholds HCC's tradition of fielding excellent setters. The whole college is very proud of her. "She was a pleasure to work with," explained Larkin. "She worked her butt off and earned this honor." Rachel and her sophomore teammates are currently busy communicating with 4-yr colleges and universities concerning their future plans.
November 6, 2011
HCC's season comes to an end in the semi-finals at the State Tournament. "No one outside of our locker room expected us to play at this level up here," stated Larkin. "I couldn't be prouder of our whole group. We put ourselves in a position to win and just missed shocking the state." Shelby Smith (with the help of a palm frond necktie, walking sticking, and a baby pine cone) continued to play loose and confident. Rachel Powell and Rebecca Schnabel were named to the All-State Tournament Team. "Our players played to the final whistle. That says all you need to know about them," continued Larkin.
The Lady Hawks volleyball family wants to thank all of our family support, our traveling fans, our fans back home, Coach Tony, Coach Monica, and our school's administrative support. We couldn't do it without you all!
November 5, 2011
Shhhh... HCC has been playing possum in its way into the state tournament, but there's no surprising anyone anymore. HCC defeated the conference champion Polk Eagles in a 5-set war to cross into the semi-finals. The Lady Hawks jumped out to a 2-set lead, but the tough and talented Polk squad fought its way back into the match pushing it to set 5. "They have a great defensive team and an OH from the Dominican Republic who plays at a different level. Our team held to the game plan, got each others' backs, and focused on the present. That's how we won game 5," explained Larkin. HCC faces the 7pm winner on Sunday at 10am. If they defeat one more opponent, the Lady Hawks will be boarding a plane for Missouri and the NJCAA National Championships. HCC was led by Rachel Powell's 53 assists, Rebecca Schnabel's 19 kills, and Shelby Smith's 12 kills and strong defensive play. "Any one of the teams at this state tournament would win matches at the national tournament. We took two tough steps toward our goal, and we have one more challenge to face," said Larkin.
November 4, 2011
Rachel Powell was named Suncoast Conference Player of the Year! Rachel Powell and Rebecca Schnabel were also named All-State! Other award winners include 1st Team All-Conference-- Rachel and Rebecca and 2nd Team All-conference-- Zoe Sostre, Nicole Higgins, Gabi Berrios, and Francesca Indoni. Congrats Lady Hawks. It takes a team to earn individual awards. Now let's keep winning!
November 4, 2011
The Lady Hawks win the all important first match at the FCCAA Tournament. It was a battle between two similar teams and offenses. In the end, HCC was able to defeat Pensacola State in 4 sets. HCC was led by Rachel Powell's 44 assists, Becca Schnabel's 19 kills, 2.5 blocks, and 3 aces, and Francesca Indoni's 7 kills and 4 blocks. "With the improved level of play in the state, every match is a battle this year. We are happy to win and advance past an excellent team. Our sights are set on Polk now. We know each other well, and our players are excited to face the challenge," explained Larkin.
HCC plays Polk State at noon Saturday. Follow along at www.psblive.com.
October 28, 2011
The Lady Hawks held strong to honor the sophomores. The team was also very happy to welcome back Captain Hillary Byrd, who is recovering from surgery. HCC faced a tough and relaxed opponent in LSCC on Thursday night but prevailed in set 5 15-9. HCC was led by Becca Schnabel's 22 kills, Nicole Higgins 13 kills, and Shelby Smith's 10 kills. Dani Weishaar chipped in 31 digs and Rachel Powell added 6 kills and 59 assists.
Becca kicked off the evening with a wonderful rendition of the National Anthem. Henry the Hawk showed up; the sophomores were allowed to "decorate" Coach Larkin's dress shirt for the match, and the freshmen decorated the gymnasium. It was a wonderful celebration for a memorable class. "It's always tough to coach on sophomore night because of the emotion in the building. The sophomores took care of business when they needed to tonight," remarked Larkin.
The Lady Hawks next play Friday at home at 2pm.
October 27, 2011
The Lady Hawks split matches in a tri-match at Indian River State College on Oct. 21st. In the first match HCC swept IRSC 3-0. "Both teams we faced will be at states, so today was a good test for us," explained Larkin. Rachel Powell led a balanced attack distributing the ball to all positions leading to 15 kills from the MBs and Opp. "I'm happy with the way Rachel has worked to involve all players in the offense," continued Larkin. In the second match, HCC played FSCJax close losing in 4 sets. "The first time we saw Jacksonville, we kind of folded," said Larkin. "We took a step in the right direction today." HCC is currently 17-13.
Join us for SOPHOMORE NIGHT Thursday, Oct. 27th at 7pm. HCC hosts LSCC. On Friday, The Lady Hawks welcome multiple teams to Tampa for the HCC Halloween Invitational. Matches begin at 11am on Friday and at 10am on Saturday.
October 20, 2011
The Lady Hawks stun PHCC in New Port Richey after dropping the first two sets. Associate Head Coach Monica Medvid and Assistant Coach Tony Cothron continued their winning streak as once a year they lead the Hawks into battle and leave the gray-haired one home. HCC's comeback was led by Zoe's 16 kills and Becca's 25 kills. "We are all super proud of the girls. Last year we had success versus Pasco, and they won the D2 championship. This year they are just as tough, so this win should give our team the confidence it needs," explained Larkin. Rachel Powell also played well near her home town as usual, posting over 50 assists.
HCC travels to Indian River State on Saturday to play two teams who earned trips to the FCCAA tournament. Match times are 11 and 1pm.
October 17, 2011
HCC wins its final conference match 3-0 at SCF Manatee to finish 5-3. The Lady Hawks have earned a 6th straight trip to the FCCAA State Tournament. MBs Hillary Byrd, Zoe Sostre, Crissi Dejiulio, and Francesca Indoni all hit over .300. "We played really well tonight. It was their sophomore night, and it is always a challenge to win on an opponent's sophomore night," explained Coach Larkin.
The Lady Hawks then traveled to Jacksonville to play in the FSCJ Tournament of Champions. HCC started by sweeping Palm Beach but fell flat thereafter losing to FSCJ and MDC. "We found a way to blow a huge lead in set 1 versus Jacksonville. After that it got a little ugly. Volleyball is as much about momentum and self-esteem. We were playing our opponent and ourselves. We'll grow from it," said Larkin. HCC finished the tournament by playing a tough 5-setter against PJC, our 1st round opponent at the state tournament.
Congratulations to Rebecca Schnabel for being named to the All-tournament team.
HCC next plays at PHCC Thursday night at 7pm.
October 12, 2011
The Lady Hawks hosted a large crowd for the SPC conference match Tuesday night. Although HCC lost, we all won as our fundraiser to support breast cancer research and awareness was a huge success. The crowd as well as players and staff were decked out in pink. The team raised over $350 on the night, and we would like to sincerely thank each and every donor who supported our efforts. The Lady Hawks travel to SCF Manatee on Thursday night.
October 11, 2011
The Lady Hawks took care of SFCC last Thursday in 3 sets to go to 4-2 in conference play. HCC is inching closer to earning its 7th consecutive trip to the State Tournament.
Over the weekend, HCC joined many of the state powers in a tournament at Manatee. HCC finished 2-2 to go to 13-8, 4-2. Setter Rachel Powell was named to the All-tournament team. Rachel posted 193 assists on the weekend. Other standouts include Becca Schnabel who posted 73 kills and Nicole Higgins and Jenna Kirkwood who both had over 20 kills. The middle blockers also combined for 50 kills and continue to become a bigger factor in matches. "Gabi took one on the chin this weekend-- literally," said Coach Larkin. "We had to send her to urgent care, but she was back for the next match. That's the kind of toughness we are striving for."
HCC hosts SPC Tuesday night in an important conference match. Come out and support our "Dig for the Cure Match" in support of breast cancer awareness and research.
October 5, 2011
HCC beats conference leader Polk State in 4 sets to improve to 10-6. After dropping the first set, the Lady Hawks rallied to win the next 3. Set 2 was especially exciting with the Hawks prevailing 34-32. "It was a high level match. Polk State is an excellent team, and tonight we rose to the occasion. Becca (22 kills) and Nicole (18 kills) were tough to stop," explained Larkin. "We're starting to look like HCC. I am proud of the girls tonight." The giant blue HCC mascot made a showing. Harry(?) the Hawk rallied the boisterous crowd who was decked out in white as part of the "white out the gym" event.
Faces in the Crowd: Tampa Tech's Head Coach Liz Colley and her volleyball players who are having an excellent high school season.
HCC plays at SFCC at 7pm on Thursday night.
On Tuesday night October 11th, HCC Volleyball will be collecting donations for Florida Suncoast of Susan G, Komen for the Cure. All spectators are encouraged to wear pink to support the fight against breast cancer. Students, faculty, and staff may also look for a volleyball player during the day in order to purchase a pink bracelet. Join us in this noble cause. See you Tuesday!
September 28, 2011
HCC move to 2-2 in conference play (9-6 overall) with 4-set win over SCF Tuesday night. "Becca got hot in set 4, hitting .700, which helped us close them out," commented Larkin. The Lady Hawks return to conference play next Tuesday at 7pm at home against conference leader Polk. Fans are encouraged to wear white shirts and help us "White out the Gym."
September 27, 2011
The Lady Hawks lend a hand. The HCC Volleyball team donated their time to help the St. Lawrence Celtics prepare for their upcoming matches. "It was so much fun working with the middle schoolers! It reminded me of when I was just starting out," remarked Captain Rachel Powell. All girls enjoyed the interaction and put in a good day's work. Good luck, Celtics! Thanks for hosting us.
September 24, 2011
HCC takes 2 matches at Lake Sumter. The Lady Hawks started the tri-match with a three game sweep of Indian River State College. Rachel Powell posted 36 assists and 7pts. In the second match, HCC beat host LSCC in 4. MB Francesca Indoni hit .410 and posted 8.5 pts. OH Becca Schnabel hit .340 on her way to 25 pts. "A number of players looked good today. It was nice to see them perform the way we know they can," commented Larkin. "Food tastes a little better after a couple of wins." HCC is 8-6.
September 24, 2011
The Lady Hawks drop a close one at SPC. After being down 0-2, HCC rallied back to tie it at 2 sets each. The Lady Hawks came up just short losing 13-15 in set 5. Dani Weishaar came off the bench to chip in 20 digs. HCC travel to LSCC for a tri-match on Saturday and resumes conference play on Tuesday at home at 7pm.
Faces in the crowd...
Thank you to the Binghams for cheering us on. It was their second visit!
September 21, 2011
HCC bounces back and sweeps SFCC. The Lady Hawks used a balanced attack and some timely blocking to secure the victory. "Rachel was pretty good tonight, and we showed a little more passion on defense," explained Larkin. "Every conference match is a challenge and we must be up for it." HCC faces SPC away on Thursday night.
Faces in the crowd...
Myeasha Williams ('09) stopped by practice Monday night...smiling as usual!
Hailey Plunkett ('05) attended tonight's match and enjoyed seeing the new Lady Hawks locker room.
Claudia Cabrera ('10) brought Tony Mountain Dew for his birthday. Happy 30th! jk
Hey!! Have you heard yet ?!! Home volleyball matches may be heard on Hawk Radio. Never miss a point again!
September 16, 2011
The Lady Hawks lose on the road to Polk State in 4. At 23-23 in game 4, HCC had a chance to make it interesting, but it was not meant to be. All players participated in various roles. The Lady Hawks continue conference play next Tuesday. "It's time to get back to work because we all need to be better from coaches down to players," commented Larkin. "We will work hard and be ready to fight next Tuesday. Our fans deserve our very best." HCC hosts SFCC next Tuesday at 7pm.
Guess who checked in...
Leah Buchanan is in town with UWF competing against St. Leo. Good luck!
Kimmy Clark from the 2006 Championship team texted this week and said she looks forward to seeing the new Hawks.
September 14, 2011
HCC misses an opportunity for momentum by losing in 5 to Pasco on their home court. "PHCC wanted it more than us. I'm not sure why, but you have to give credit where credit is due," admitted Larkin.
A huge thank you to Hawk Radio for doing its first ever volleyball broadcast!
Last night's crowd was also the biggest volleyball crowd in history. Thanks to our great fans!
September 9, 2011
HCC moves up to 15 in the NJCCA after winning its home invitational. "Starting the year at 22nd was largely due to the program's history and reputation. Our moving up this week is a reflection of the team's hard work," said Coach Larkin. HCC also has a number of players ranked in national statistical categories. Setter Rachel Powell ranks in the top 5 in assists/set and OH Becca Schnabel ranks in the top 5 in kills/set. OH Jenna Kirkwood ranks in the top 25 in kills/set and Libero Gabi Berrios ranks in the top 25 in digs/set. "We get better every day; that's all I can ask."
September 4, 2011
The Lady Hawks take the home HCC Invitational trophy after sweeping SPC.
The day started with a 4-set win over Webber's JV squad. HCC was led by Becca Schnabel's 18 kills and 13 digs and Jenna Kirkwood's 12 kills. HCC had 11 blocks in the match.
The win set up a meeting with SPC with the championship on the line. HCC came out strong winning the first two sets 25-15, 25-15. The team then rallied and came from behind, sealing the victory with a timely swing by Kirkwood to win set 3 26-24. The Hawks got 11 kills by Kirkwood and Schnabel and another 9.5 pts from Hillary Byrd. The team posted 13 total blocks.
HCC next faces PHCC 9/13 at home at 7pm.
Faces in the crowd: 2009 alumni Erica Medvid and Katlyn Flick
Did you know: 2004 Alumnus Alina Paulsen (Pasciuta) and her husband are moving to Mississippi to open their Chick-fil-A, and they will also welcome a new baby!
2005 alumnus Brittany Hipps will get married next week!
Good luck to all!
September 3, 2011
HCC opened the weekend with a straight set victory over a spirited SFCC squad. "Early in the year, we all ride a roller coaster. Today was no different; we saw flashes of brilliance and flashes of confusion," explained Larkin. The Lady Hawks were led by Becca Schnabel's 15.5 pts and Captain Hillary Byrd's 9 pts. The team had a .440 hitting percentage.
In the second match, HCC faced #25 SCF. In a back and forth affair, the Lady Hawks prevailed in 4 sets. Rachel Powell dished out 48 assists and Becca posted 24 kills. HCC had two others with double digit kills, Jenna Kirkwood with 13 and Nicole Higgins with 10.
HCC improves to 3-3.
August 31, 2011
The Lady Hawks finished its scrimmage season with a home match vs. St. Leo. "It was an excellent test against a well-coached team," explained Larkin. "We played with passion and determination. I was very pleased with the product last night." OH Becca Schnabel Had 19 kills and Libero Gabi Berrios had 38 digs. HCC hosts an invitational starting this Friday at 11:30am.
August 28, 2011
The Lady Hawks return from Iowa Western with a great deal of experience. HCC started the tournament playing #1 WNCC tough but falling in 4 close sets. HCC was the only team to take a set off the Cougars. The Lady Hawks followed it up with an impressive sweep of power Missouri St. West Plains. "WNCC was very polished for this stage in the season and Missouri St. was very athletic, so I was very pleased with our first day," explained Coach Larkin. On day 1, HCC was led by setter Rachel Powell and OH Becca Schnabel. On day 2, HCC faced #15 Jefferson and #4 IWCC but came out flat losing both. "We return only one impact player from 2010, so it will take a little time for players to grow into their roles," remarked Larkin. "This weekend was both humbling and inspiring." OH Shelby Smith stood out on Day 2 for her high energy and intensity. HCC is currently ranked 22nd and is 1-3.
August 24, 2011
HCC scrimmaged UT last night as its last preparation for the IWCC Invitational. "We are grateful that UT invited us. The scrimmages we have played were extremely challenging and should prepare us for anything we might see in Iowa," remarked Larkin. The Lady Hawks played some good games taking one and staying close in a couple of others. "It's for real now. We just have to step off that plane confident in the work we have done and confident of the players and team that we have become."
August 22, 2011
HCC was grateful to host Florida Southern last night. "Southern is poised to have a great year. With so many returning seniors, Coach Jill will have them at the top of the DII poll," said Larkin. HCC played a little bit of a roller coaster match, but the Lady Hawks played courageous defense on their way to winning a couple of games. "It was another great learning experience for our new starters and our incoming freshmen."
August 19, 2011
The Lady Hawks scrimmaged CCC last night. Coach Larkin remarked, "We're very thankful to have hosted CCC as they are always disciplined and determined." Under casual conditions, HCC found some rhythm on offense and played very scrappy defense, winning the first four games. "I was very happy with our communication and the way Rachel [Powell] spread the ball around," said Larkin. The Lady Hawks also posted 10 blocks and 16 aces. "We all just want to play someone other than ourselves at this point in the season. We learned a lot."