The Minnesota volleyball team had its 2005 recruiting class named the fourth-best in the nation according to prepvolleyball.com. It marks the second time in the last three seasons, that the Golden Gopher program has had a top-five recruiting class in the nation.
Minnesota also had the fourth-best recruiting class in the nation in 2003. That class consisted of current sophomores Meredith Nelson (St. Croix Falls, Wis.), 2004 First-Team All-American Kelly Bowman (Maple Grove, Minn.) and Marci Peniata (Plymouth, Minn.).
This year’s class is made up of Rachel Hartmann, Kyla Roehrig, Kelly Schmidt and Katie Vatterrodt. Three of the four recruits were ranked in the prepvolleyball.com top 20 seniors, and all four of them are among the top 35 graduating high school seniors in the nation.
Hartmann is a 5-11 setter out of St. Charles, Ill. who attends Rosary High School. She is the 11th-ranked high school senior in the nation according to prepvolleyball.com. Hartmann was named Chicago Sun Times First-Team All-Area in 2004 and to the Daily Herald All-Area team in 2003. She also broke the school record for assists. In her senior season, Hartmann led Rosary High School to its first ever conference championship. Rosary was also ranked No. 42 in the nation according to prepvolleyball.com. She also helped her basketball team to its first ever conference championship in her sophomore season.
In the summer of 2004, Hartmann played for the U.S. A-2 National Team. She also played club volleyball for Club Fusion Volleyball the last three seasons. Her team finished ninth in the Junior National Championships in 2004.
Roehrig is a 6-4 outside hitter out of Papillion, Neb. who attends Papillion LaVista High School. She is the 20th-ranked high school senior in the nation according to prepvolleyball.com. Roehrig was named All-State, All-City and All-Conference in her sophomore and junior seasons. She was also named Super State in 2002 and 2003, and was a 2003 prepvolleyball.com All-American. Roehrig was also a 2003 Finalist for “National Class Player of the Year”.
She helped lead her team to runner-up in the State Championship in 2003, and to state titles in 2001 and 2002. Roehrig also broke the state’s single-season kill record with 812 in her junior season. She was named to the All-Metro team in basketball as well in 2004. Roehrig also played club volleyball for the Nebraska Juniors Volleyball Club. Her team finished fifth at the Junior National Championships in 2004.
Schmidt is a 6-3 middle blocker/right side from Champaign Ill. who attends Centennial High School. She is the 31st-ranked high school senior in the nation according to prepvolleyball.com. Schmidt was named Second-Team All-State in 2003 and Honorable Mention All-State in 2002.
She was also named First-Team All-Conference and All-Area in 2003 and 2004. Schmidt was named the conference’s Blocker of the Year in 2002, 2003 and 2004, and the Offensive Player of the Year in 2003 and 2004. She set her high school’s record in blocks and kills. Schmidt also played five years for the Illini Elite Volleyball Club.
Vatterrodt is a 6-2 outside hitter from Bloomington, Ill. who attends Normal County West High School. She is the 18th-ranked high school senior in the nation according to prepvolleyball.com. Vatterrodt was named All-Area and All-City in 2003 and 2004 and All- Conference in 2002, 2003 and 2004. She set the single- season school record for kills. Vatterrodt was also the team MVP in 2003 and 2004 and was named a Big 12 Scholar Athlete.
She also played on the U.S. A-2 National team in the summer of the 2004. Vatterrodt has played for the Illini Elite club team for the last six years.
With four players in the class ranking among the top 100 seniors on prepvolleyball.com and transfer Megan Cumpston, Minnesota has now had eight players who have ranked in the top 35 or better and six who have been in the top 20 on the prepvolleyball.com top seniors list the past three years.
“This should be the best recruiting class to ever be assembled at Minnesota,” said Hebert. "They will bring a blend of talent, experience, and size that will impress everyone. We have met all of our recruiting needs and then some.”
Top 10 National Recruiting Classes according to prepvolleyball.com 1. Stanford
2. Penn State
8. Georgia Tech
9. Long Beach State
Minnesota Recruiting Class According to prepvolleyball.com:
“Financial pressures forced JC superstar Madelaynne Montano to turn pro early and forego two years with the Golden Gophers, but the remaining class should still help Minnesota keep its spot among the collegiate elite, especially with the transfer of OH Meghan Cumpston from Arizona. Cumpston is expected to start immediately, as is Vatterrodt, an explosive attacker, or Roehrig, a powerful net presence, as the Gophers will need to replace graduated outside hitters Erin Martin and Trisha Bratford. Hartmann was considered the second best setter in the class and she could set a 6:2 with Kelly Bowman her first year or watch and gain seasoning. Schmidt is an athletic middle who may not see the court right away with three strong returnees standing in her way. Fallon, a fiery leader, will get to learn from Paula Gentil and Marci Peniata, two of the best defenders in the game.”