CHARLESTON, S.C. – College of Charleston volleyball coach Jason Kepner has announced the signing of two outstanding players for the 2013 season, setter Lexi Rhein (Wrightsville, Pa.) and middle blocker Maddie Hills (Toronto, Canada).
“I am thrilled to add Lexi and Maddie to our team next season,” Kepner said. “They both bring a high level of playing experience, speed, and a very competitive edge with them to Charleston. The two of them have a team-first mentality and individually are both great people that I know will represent CofC very well.”
Rhein comes to the College of Charleston as a highly decorated setter out of Eastern York High School. She has been named first team All-County and first team All-District every year since her sophomore season and has been named to her school’s Superior Honor Role every semester since freshman year.
Playing for Synergy Volleyball Club, Rhein has helped lead her club team to the Pennsylvania Regional Championship every year since 2009. The team took third place the USA Junior Nationall Volleyball Championships in 2010 and first place in nationals in 2012 in Columbus, Ohio. Rhein was named an All-American in both trips to the national championships.
She was named to Prep Volleyball’s Senior Aces for the class of 2013 and is an Under Armour High School All-American nominee.
Rhein comes to the Cougars from an athletic pedigree. Her parents played Division I athletics at Bucknell University, while her older sisters, Kelly and Courtney, played volleyball at Appalachian State. Her younger brother, Conrad, is a high school lacrosse player.
“Lexi is one of the quickest and most athletic setters that I have seen in a long time,” Kepner said. “She is a natural leader on the court and delivers a very nice ball to her teammates. She keeps all of her hitters involved in the offense and is always looking for additional ways to help her team be successful.”
Hills will be the first international player during Kepner’s tenure as a native of Canada. She was captain of her high school team, Martingrove Collegiate Institute, and helped lead the Bears to the Toronto City Volleyball Championship in 2011.
She has been a three-year starter for her club team, Defensa Volleyball, which won the Canadian U16 National Championship in 2011 and placed second in the Canadian U18 National Championship in 2012. She has also played sand volleyball the past four summers and medaled each year in different age groups.
A member of the school’s honor every year since ninth grade, Hills is vice president of the Martingrove Bears Athletic Council.
“Maddie is an extremely hard working middle that is always up fast in serve receive and transition,” Kepner said. “She does a great job of providing a consistent option for the setters and forces her opponent to worry about her at all times. She has good instincts and hands as a blocker which will really help her see playing time next fall.”
Both players will come to a veteran program in 2013 with nine players in the junior and senior classes, after the graduation of current seniors Kelly Kolich and Emily Shelton.