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Trabuco Hills' Allison Kantor had 32 kills in her school's CIF-SS Division 1A championship victory over Valencia.

Girls volleyball player of the year: Allison Kantor, Trabuco Hills

STAFF WRITER

Allison Kantor easily could have chosen a different path to college.

The last four years of her life have been consumed with volleyball, but there was another sport that grabbed her attention as a little kid.

“I played soccer, my whole family played soccer,” Kantor said. “I always thought I was going to play soccer in college.”

In her freshman year at Trabuco Hills, Kantor and her friend, Carly McKinney, decided to try out for the volleyball team.

“I was like, ‘I’m tall, might as well try out,’” Kantor remembered. “I was surprised I even made the team. I knew going into high school, I wanted to be involved in a lot of things so why not try out for volleyball. Different season than soccer, so I figured I could do it.”

Kantor played both sports in club and for the Mustangs during her first two years of high school. During her sophomore year, she decided it was time to focus on one sport.

She settled on volleyball.

“It was really hard,” she said of the decision. “It got to the point where it was too much doing all of it, keeping up grades, and then my parents said I needed to pick one. I ended up picking volleyball.

“It was kind of natural for me to play soccer, but I kind of did my own thing and went into volleyball. At first, it was difficult, especially learning rotations and where to stand (on the court), but I had really good coaches and that’s helped me a lot.”

Kantor, who has signed with Santa Clara, helped lead the transformation of the Trabuco Hills program, which culminated with winning the CIF-SS Division 1A title this season.

For her performance this season and for leading the Mustangs to new heights, Kantor is the Register’s girls volleyball player of the year.

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2015 All-County girls volleyball:

Girls volleyball coach of the year: Craig Moothart, Trabuco Hills

All-County girls volleyball: First team

All-Country girls volleyball: Second, third, fourth teams

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“When we saw her four years ago as a freshman, she wa

s very athletic,” Coach Craig Moothart said. “Having fun, working hard, finding success and progressively getting better. This has been a match made in heaven.”

The success enjoyed by Kantor and the Mustangs team didn’t come overnight.

In fact, the team used the summer to start preparing for the fall season.

“During this summer, a lot of us got together and did private training, lifting and running,” Kantor said. “Most of that was because we’re such a close group of friends and we wanted to do it together.”

With Kantor leading the charge, the Mustangs took aim in the CIF-SS Division 1A bracket. They lost just two sets as they advanced to the final, where Kantor connected on 32 kills to lead the Mustangs to a sweep of Valencia of Valencia.

Kantor and the Mustangs defeated Cathedral Catholic and Mater Dei in the first two rounds of the CIF Southern California Regional before losing to Redondo Union in the regional final.

The victory over Mater Dei, in Kantor’s words “was icing on the cake.”

“She put the team on her back when she had to,” Moothart said of Kantor. “I think the best is still to come for her as she heads to Santa Clara.”

Contact the writer: dcalhoun@ocregister.com


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