Summer Hinton is one of the reasons why.
Hinton finished as the Class 1A Elite Eight State Tournament MVP, leading the Bulldogs to a perfect run through Birmingham, beating two-time defending state champion Donoho in the process.
Hinton was too much for the competition at state.
In the championship match — a straight-set sweep of Donoho — Hinton registered a team-high 12 kills along with six digs, five aces and a block.
In three state tournament matches — all sweeps — Hinton finished with 36 kills, 14 digs, 10 aces and three blocks.
That was nothing new for the junior outside hitter, who was also the co-MVP of the Winston County Volleyball Tournament this season.
Hinton is the Daily Mountain Eagle’s 2013 Volleyball Player of the Year.
She finished the season with 467 kills, 296 digs, 106 aces and 67 blocks.
Hinton was one of four Addison players to finish with more than 400 kills on the season.
“She’s one of those athletes that is very coachable,” Addison coach Pam Wilkins said of Hinton.
“When you are through telling her what you want from her, she thanks you, and then tries to do what you told her to do. She’s a dynamic athlete. She jumps well and she's quick.”
Addison finished the season with a 55-6 mark, capturing its sixth state championship, and first since 2010.
All of the Bulldogs’ losses this season came to teams in larger classifications, including four teams that advanced to the state tournament.
Hinton, who wrapped up her third season on the varsity squad this year, played on Addison's state runner up teams each of the last two seasons.
This season, Wilkins said she took her game to the next level.
“Summer was nervous and timid as a 10th grader. This year, she was really aggressive,” said Wilkins, adding that Hinton is already drawing the attention of college coaches.
“Next year, she should be even more comfortable. She’s going to play club ball starting in January. I expect her to step into the role as a leader next year. I think she will come in with a lot of confidence.”
Hinton leads this year's Eagle Elite Volleyball Team.
Eagle Elite Volleyball Team
Addison: Summer Hinton (Player of the Year), Holly Posey, Jessy Taylor and Kayla Robinson
Walker: Sidney Cooper, JoLee Dobbs and Miranda Bruce
Winston County: Savanna Tidwell
Meek: Ragen Yarbrough
Cordova: Faith Sims, Emily Wilson
Carbon Hill: Jessica Hurst
Curry: Josie Walker, Hannah Simmons
Dora: Alexia Smith
Lynn: Emma Easley, Brooklyn Beck
Meek: Morgan Hudson
Walker: Madisyn Hood and Anna Claire Harris
Winston County: Brook Garrison
Carbon Hill: Savanna Lawson and Molli Clark; Cordova: Kaitlyn Barnes and Emily Colburn; Curry: Gabby Englebert; Lynn: Tiffany Self; Meek: Loren Abercrombie and Jordan Waldrep; Walker: Annie Jane Crump and Carleigh Taylor