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Smith's stellar season leads to All-CIF first-team honor

Volleyball: Flintridge Prep senior middle blocker finished with a team-leading 198 kills and 73 blocks to earn recognition.

June 20, 2011|By Charles Rich, charles.rich@latimes.com

GLENDALE — Kenyatta Smith had a most memorable winter season, culminating with him leading the Flintridge Prep boys' basketball team to a CIF Southern Section Division 5-AA title.

Since the championship run spilled over into the beginning of the volleyball season, it took a bit of time for Smith to make the transition over to volleyball. Once he made it, he showed he could stand out at middle blocker for the school's boys' volleyball program.

The Harvard University-bound Smith was a dominating force for the Rebels, and he was recognized for his work by being named to the All-CIF Division V first team Monday.

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Smith, a middle blocker, who couldn't be reached for comment, led the team in kills with 198 and collected 73 blocks.

"It's no surprise that he was one of the top players in our division," said Flintridge Prep senior opposite hitter Jared Norsworthy, who also helped the basketball team win the title. "I think for him, it was an easier transition to make [from basketball to volleyball] than for some others who might have had to make it.

"His hard work paid off. It's great to see it be noticed."

Flintridge Prep finished third in the Prep League that included eventual league and CIF champion Chadwick before advancing to the quarterfinals of the playoffs. Smith missed the quarterfinal match against top-seeded Vistamar after suffering an off-the-court injury.

Smith was one of five Prep League players to secure All-CIF honors. Pasadena Poly's Mike Saeta was named the division's most valuable player. Those named to the first team from the league were James Lanihan, Hank Trumbull and Ryan Hood of Chadwick.

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