Volleyball Announces New Recruits

Submitted by: Ron Smith - June 9th, 2006


Head coach Jim Smoot has announced the signing of six new players to the Westmont volleyball squad. Sophomore Laura Trudelle of Portola Valley will join freshmen Jenise DeBie of Paramount, Beth Widicus of Coto de Caza, Katelyn Lowry of Menifee, Tara Trimble of Greenwood Village, Colorado and Stephanie Dunn of Makawao, Hawaii for the 2006 campaign.

“It’s a pretty good recruiting class,” said Smoot. “Obviously we have increased our height and everybody has the ability to come in and start right away. It’s going to make for a very competitive situation in practice.”

Trudelle, who stands at 6′ 0″, played her freshman year at Notre Dame de Namur where she played middle blocker while leading the Argonauts with 318 kills (3.24 per game) and was second in blocking with .41 per game. Prior to college, Trudelle attended at Woodside Priory School in Portola Valley where she was selected as most valuable player in volleyball, basketball and swimming in both her junior and senior years. She was recognized three times as the school’s female athlete of the year.

“Laura gained a lot of experienced last year at Notre Dame,” said Smoot. “She is a good all-around player. Her skills are developed and most likely will concentrate on middle blocking. She is a very good attacker especially off of one foot.”

In high school, Trudelle, was league MVP in her junior season and was a first team all-county selection in her senior season. During her freshman year, Woodside won the CIF Central Coast Section Division V Championships and advanced to win the Northern California Championships before losing to Immanuel in the state championship match.

Graduating from Valley Christian High School in Cerritos, DeBie (6′ 1″) played at middle blocker and led the team in kills (2.86 per game) and blocks (0.76 per game). A first team all-league selection in both her junior and senior seasons, DeBie led the league in blocks in her final year. She was also selected to the 2004 dream team by the Long Beach Press-Telegram.

“Jenise can play either middle or right side and we will be looking at her for both positions,” said Smoot. “She’s another good attacker off of one foot and she has quick movements which helps her blocking.”

As a member of the Southern California Volleyball Association High Performance team, DeBie competed at the Global Challenge in Salt Lake City in 2005 and will compete in Italy this summer in the same event.

“Janise will be playing all summer and the experience of playing in Italy will definitely help prepare her for Westmont,” added Smoot.

Widicus (5′ 11″) moved to the middle blocker position in her senior season at Tesoro High School. She played four years on the varsity squad which advanced to the CIF playoffs each year.

“Beth is an excellent jumper and will probably play outside,” said Smoot. “She is someone we can run a lot of different options with and get creative offensively. Beth is the only outside hitter we are bringing in.”

A two year team MVP, Lowry holds the Paloma Valley High School record for kills, blocks and digs. The 6′ 1″ middle blocker was selected to the first team All-Sunbelt League and the All-Valley team. She also was named to the Marlborough All-Tournament team in both her junior and senior seasons.

“Katelyn is very mobile,” said Smoot. “She is a good blocker and attacker and will be competing for one of the middle blocker spots.”

Trimble, who also stands at 6′ 1″, attended Cherry Creek High School where she played varsity volleyball in her junior and senior years and won the coaches award during her final year. During her junior season, the team advanced to the state tournament. She also competed on the Rocky Mountain Region All-Star team and a Junior Olympics Club team.

“I’ve been really impressed with the improvement I have seen in Tara during club season,” said Smoot. “She has been playing right side in club and she will be concentrating on right side for us. Tara is a strong blocker who can get over (the net) and help us with the block.”

Captain of the Maui Interscholastic League (MIL) Division II Champions, the 5′ 11″ Dunn was honored as the Seabury Hall Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Dunn was named to the All-MIL Division II first team.

“Stephanie has played both middle and right side,” reported Smoot. “She is a quick, explosive player, a good blocker and good at hitting second options.”

In addition to volleyball, Dunn was also captain of the Seabury Hall tennis team and named to the All-MIL team. Her older sister, Jennie, plays tennis for Westmont.