One of the finest volleyball players to ever don a Lady Longhorn uniform will take her playing act to the next level.
Senior Desi Burris has signed a letter of intent to play next year at South Florida Community College in Avon Park.
PHS coach Arnold Stonebrink expects Burris to play setter for the Panthers.
Burris graduates from PHS next week with the Class of 2010 and then reports to the college.
But before she begins preparations for South Florida, she will participate in the Arizona Volleyball Coaches Association North vs. South All-Star game when it is played June 19 at Eastern Arizona College.
Burris and her former PHS teammate Michelle Daniels will be members of the South celestial squad.
The two were chosen for the prestigious game in a voting of AVCA members held at the conclusion of the 2009 season.
At PHS Burris was a three-year varsity letter winner and one of the most well-rounded players in the history of the program.
Playing multiple positions, but most often opposite hitter, she finished first or second on the team in serving each year of her varsity career.
As a senior, she led the team in aces with 83 and was second in assists with 298.
Stonebrink lauds her as an athlete who “can do just about anything — hit, set, block, pass and serve.”
In addition to being chosen an AVCA all-star, Burris was named last fall an All-East Region First Team selection and later All-State honorable mention.
Stonebrink often tells the story of Burris’ finest moment as a Lady Horn which occurred in the Flagstaff Coconino Invitational vs. Winslow.
Burris served the entire victory prompting the coach to deadpan, “The score was Desi Burris, 15, Winslow 0.”
Although Payson was eliminated from the state tournament last fall by an opening round loss to Sedona, Burris was at the top of her game.
“She hit .429, had four kills, and led the team in serve-receiving efficiency, serving efficiency and aces,” Stonebrink said.
At South Florida, she will play for coach Kim Crawford, a former three-time collegiate All-American and an ex-pro of the Bud Light Beach Tour.