Nov. 14, 2002
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Florida State head coach Todd Kress, in the process of developing his own volleyball program, announced Thursday the signing of four of the nation's top volleyball players. Nikki Anthony, a 6'2" outside attacker from Pickens, S.C. (Pickens), Sarah Griffin, a 5'10" middle blocker from Hereford, Texas (Hereford), Cassie McLaughlin, a 6'1" middle blocker from Cary, Ill. (Cary Grove) and Jessica Skower, a 6'1" setter from Naples, Fla. (Naples) signed National Letters of Intent and will play for the Seminoles in 2003.
"We are thrilled to have these four student-athletes join the Florida State volleyball program," said Kress. "They are a group that will bring heart, passion and the competitive spirit to this team and their competitiveness will be a welcomed element."
Anthony, a two-sport athlete, will play volleyball and basketball for the Seminoles. A four-year starter for Pickens High School, Anthony has helped lead her team to three state championships. Named to Student Sports Magazine's Top 100 List this season, Anthony has competed in two National Junior Olympic tournaments and a USA Development Camp. Three times in her career at Pickens, Anthony earned South Carolina Coaches Association of Women's Sports (SCCAWS) All-State honors and Region I AAA Player of the Year honors. She has twice been named a member of the SCCAWS All-State team, the SCCAWS AAA Player of the Year, the South Carolina Gatorade Player of the Year and High School Sports Report Ms. Volleyball in South Carolina. Anthony chose Florida State over Clemson and South Carolina.
Griffin is a four-year starter at Hereford High School. As a member of the 2001 state-championship team, Griffin was named MVP of the state tournament, Amarillo Globe-News Super Team (first team), TGCA Class 4A All-State First Team, 3A-4A All District First Team and Player of the Year. Griffin earned Amarillo Globe-News Super Team and District 3A-4A First Team honors following the 2000 season, in which she helped lead her team to the 4A regional semifinals. In 1999, Griffin was named Newcomer of the Year, a member of the All-Tournament team and Globe News Honorable Mention after helping her team to the 4A state championship.
McLaughlin, a powerful middle blocker from Cary, Ill., comes to Florida State from Cary Grove High School. McLaughlin received numerous honors in 2001, after leading her team to a Super Sectional appearance in the Illinois State Tournament. She was named All Conference, Daily Herald All-Area, Northwest Herald All-Area and Sun Times All-Area. McLaughlin also earned Tribune and News-Gazette all state honors.
A setter from Naples High School, Skower has competed on the varsity volleyball team for four years. Skower competed for Team Florida in 2001 and 2002, prior to her junior and senior seasons. She has been named to the All-County team three times during her career at Naples High School, in 1999, 2000 and 2001. In 2001, she was named to the 5A All-State Fourth Team. She received Naples High School Most Valuable Player honors and the Naples High School Student-Athlete Award in 2000. She was also named the "Best Setter" award at the Winter Haven Tournament during the 2000 season.