Kearney, Neb. – Nebraska-Kearney head volleyball coach Rick Squiers today announced the names of three high school seniors who’ll suit up for the Lopers in the fall of 2020. They are outside hitter Ibinye “Ibi” Green (Elkhorn South H.S.), outside hitter Lauren Taubenheim (Lincoln Pius X H.S.) and defensive specialist/libero Adison “Adi” Wood (Kearney H.S.). UNK has four seniors on this year’s team in outside hitters Emma Benton and Julianne Jackson and middle blockers Josie Cox and Mackenzie Puckett. “We couldn’t be more excited about the 2020 Loper Volleyball recruiting class. They are outstanding people from great families and highly successful programs. Our new Lopers possess the talent and intangibles to excel both on and off the court,” Squiers said.
Wood (5-7) is a basketball, volleyball and track letterwinner for the Bearcats. On the volleyball court she is a three-time all-league pick who set several KHS records including service aces in a season (55) and career (176). She also set an NSAA state record for digs in a season with 790 (2018) and finished her career with 2,208 digs. Wood’s efforts helped the ‘Cats win a school-record 23 matches in 2017. “Adi’s rock solid back row skill set should translate well to the college level. She is a steady serve receiver, fearless defender, and a strong server,” Squiers said. The 2019 Kearney Hub Female Prep Athlete of the Year, Wood averaged a team-best 10.9 points per game last year in basketball while being a Class A state placer in the triple jump each of the past three springs. The three-time academic all-league pick helped KHS track place second as a team in 2017 and third the past two years. “She also has some setting ability and a strong competitive spirit. Adi’s a perfect fit for Loper volleyball,” Squiers said.
Green (5-11) amassed a Class A-best 429 kills and hit .329 this fall for a Storm team that went 29-8 and was the second seed in the state tournament. She also added 72 digs and 63 digs in playing all 110 sets. In a career with nearly 900 kills and over a .300 hitting efficiency, she was named all-state and all-metro as a junior. The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) tabbed her all-region this year while she was a 2017 honorable mention Prep Dig Outstanding Sophomore. Her play helped the Storm win two district titles and reach state three times, reaching the 2017 Class B semifinals. “Ibi is a dynamic attacker who can score points from either pin. In addition to being an outstanding athlete, she’s an elite student with an energetic and competitive personality who plays with joy. She’s a fantastic addition to our program,” Squiers said.
Taubenheim (6-2) has unique connection to Squiers as her mother, Nancy (Farmer), played one season for him at Hastings College and is a member of the Broncos Hall of Fame. She also has Loper connections as her older sister, Regan, is currently a redshirt sophomore on the cross country and track teams. “Lauren’s college volleyball potential is off the charts. It’s easy to notice her abilities in the front row but she also is a very accomplished back row passer and defender. She can do big things at the next level as a six-rotation player,” Squiers said. A volleyball, basketball and track letterwinner for the Thunderbolts, Taubenheim tallied 393 digs, 326 kills and 27 blocks this past season while hitting a solid .357. Her play helped Pius go 32-7 and reach the Class A state semifinals. A year earlier the team finished runners up. Taubenheim was a 2018 Class A first-team all-state pick while also being named to the SuperState third-team. Finally she made the AAU National All-Tourney team and is an all-state basketball player as well. UNK (28-0, 18-0) hosts Missouri Southern State tonight and Pittsburg State on Saturday to close out the 2019 regular season.