Hidalgo named Southland Freshman of the Year

Published 10:26 am Thursday, November 18, 2021

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Cicily Hidalgo, an outside hitter on the Southeastern Louisiana University volleyball team, was named the Southland Conference Freshman of the Year, joining teammate Karlee Wilkerson on the All-Conference teams released Wednesday by the league office.

A freshman from Opelousas, Louisiana, Hidalgo was a first-team selection after leading the Southland in numerous offensive categories, including points per set (4.16), total points (432.5), kills per set (3.82), total kills (397), attacks per set (11.30) and total attacks (1,175).

The only freshman to win a weekly award from the conference this season, she was the Southland’s offensive player in back-to-back weeks during late September. During that stretch, Hidalgo became to first Southland student-athlete to record at least 30 kills in a match since the 2016 season. She was also the only Southland freshman to play every point of every set her team played during the 2021 season.

“We couldn’t be prouder of Cicily for willingly taking on such a big role this year,” head coach Jeremy White said. “She has been both spectacular and steady, as well as a phenomenal teammate all while leading us and the conference in scoring. The sky is the limit for her.”

Hidalgo currently ranks 19th nationally in total attacks, 37th in total kills, 43rd in attacks per set and 54th in total points.

Her contributions were not limited to offense, ranking second on the team in total digs. Hidalgo recorded 14 double-doubles during the regular season, including six consecutive in mid-October.

A third-team selection, Wilkerson ranks second on the team in kills per set (2.33), attack percentage (.212) and total blocks (64). Her kills per set average ranks 12th in the Southland. The preseason All-Conference selection also contributed 12 digs and a pair of assists.

“Karlee’s development over the last three years has been unbelievable,” White said. “She was my first recruit here at SLU, and to see her succeed on this level is proof of everything we are trying to do with this program. She’s so deserving of this honor.”

The native of Springfield, Louisiana was also a preseason All-Southland selection.

Houston Baptist and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi produced five selections apiece to lead all eight schools represented on the all-conference rosters. McNeese earned a trio of selections, followed by New Orleans, Northwestern State and Southeastern, with two honorees apiece. UIW and Nicholls round out the teams with one selection each.

Each individual Southland Conference superlative award winner and all-conference honoree will be recognized prior to their first match at the 2021 Southland Conference Tournament, which begins Thursday, Nov. 18, inside Sharp Gym on the HBU campus.


SLU is the No. 4 seed in the 2021 Southland Conference Volleyball Tournament, earning a first-round bye. All eight Southland teams will participate in the single-elimination event, televised in its entirety on ESPN+.

Thursday at 2:30 p.m., the Lady Lions match up with the winner of Wednesday’s first-round contest between No. 5-seeded UIW and No. 8-seeded New Orleans.

Fans interested in becoming active supporters of the Southeastern volleyball program are encouraged to join the Diggin’ It Club. Lion volleyball alums are encouraged to join the exclusive S Club, which is restricted to Southeastern athletic letter winners.

All membership fees and donations to both the Diggin’ It Club and S Club (volleyball) are available for the exclusive use of the Southeastern volleyball program. Membership information is available by contacting the Lion Athletics Association at laa@southeastern.edu or (985) 549-5091 or visiting www.LionUp.com.

For more information on Lady Lions Volleyball, follow @LionUpVB or @JWhiteSLU on Twitter, @LionUpVB on Instagram, like /SLUathletics on Facebook and subscribe to the SLUathletics YouTube channel.


Player of the Year: Faith Panhans, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Freshman of the Year: Cicily Hidalgo, Southeastern

Newcomer of the Year: Symone Wesley, Northwestern State

Libero of the Year: Carissa Barnes, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Setter of the Year: Faith Panhans, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Coach of the Year: Trent Herman, HBU

First Team                                        

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Ebonie Ballesteros2 Sr. MB HBU El Paso, Texas
Anna Gadway Jr. RS/S HBU Needville, Texas
Ellie Wipf2 Jr. S HBU New Braunfels, Texas
Cicily Hidalgo Fr. OH Southeastern Opelousas, La.
Carissa Barnes3 Jr. L A&M-Corpus Christi Weatherford, Texas
Faith Panhans2 Jr. S A&M-Corpus Christi Plano, Texas
Rachel Young3 Sr. MB A&M-Corpus Christi Frisco, Texas

Second Team                                    

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Bethany Clapp2 Sr. OH UIW Corpus Christi, Texas
Aryn Johnson Fr. OH McNeese Rosharon, Texas
Sh’diamond Holly So. MB New Orleans Morgan City, La.
Sheilah Purcell R-So. L/DS New Orleans Centerville, Ohio
Emily Gauthreaux Sr. OH Nicholls Houma, La.
Kyndal Payne Fr. OH A&M-Corpus Christi Haslet, Texas
Montez Uigaese Gr. MB/OPP A&M-Corpus Christi Long Beach, Calif.


Third Team                                      

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Kaley Feris So. DS/L HBU North Richland Hills, Texas
Audrey Pearce Fr. MB HBU Aledo, Texas
Kendall Glueck Jr. OPP McNeese Tomball, Texas
Macee Krpec So. OPP McNeese Nada, Texas
Breanna Burrell So. OH Northwestern State Kingwood, Texas
Symone Wesley Jr. OH Northwestern State Grapevine, Texas
Karlee Wilkerson Sr. MB/OPP Southeastern Springfield, La.

– Two-Time Selection
– Three-Time Selection