June 6, 2014
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - The Tennessee volleyball team has added two impact players to its 2014 roster as announced Friday by Head Coach Rob Patrick. Incoming freshmen Sabrina Tavakoli and Kendra Turner will join the Vols for the upcoming fall season.
Tavakoli, a Corona, Calif. native, was a four-year letterwinner and two-time captain at Centennial High School. The setter spent the high-school offseason training with the Mizuno Long Beach Volleyball Club.
"Sabrina is a very athletic, quick and strong volleyball player who will come in with a lot of experience. She plays for one of the top club teams in the country at Long Beach Mizuno and has been trained by two All-American setters in Joy McKienzie-Fuerbringer and Sabrina Hernandez," said Patrick. "She already sets a high level of offense and we expect her to compete for playing time when she sets foot on campus."
Tavakoli was named All-League during each of her high school seasons, earning second team honors her freshman and sophomore seasons and first team her junior and senior years.
She was named the Big VIII Most Hustling Player for her final three seasons at Centennial and earned league Player of the Year honors in her senior year.
During the week of Nov. 4, 2013 she was named the IESportsNet.com Player of the Week, is a three-time scholar-athlete and a three-time team MVP.
Turner comes to Tennessee from Riverside Academy in Reserve, La. where she spent her final two high school seasons under the direction of cousin, and high school coach, Chelsey Nicholas.
"Kendra is going to bring a tremendous amount of athletic ability to our volleyball team," said Patrick. "She is a strong, powerful, six-rotation outside hitter, one of those rare volleyball athletes that can control the ball in the back row as well as terminate in the front row."
"We are very excited about the potential that Kendra brings to our program," continued Patrick, "and she will be able to provide firepower on the right and outside hitting positions on our team."
Turner earned New Orleans Area All-District Volleyball Team and NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune All-New Orleans Area Volleyball Team honors after her senior season at Riverside Academy.
She was also awarded District 4-IV MVP honors after averaging 19 kills per match in her senior year. She tallied a seven-game stretch of 104 total kills including a 19-kill performance in a three-set win over St. Martin's.
Turner entered her senior season as the 2013 NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune Small School Preseason Player of the Year after helping to carry Riverside to the state semifinals for the first time in program history during her junior season.