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A libero and outside hitter have signed NCAA national letters of intent to play for the Montana State Billings volleyball program this fall.

Joining the Yellowjackets are libero Kimberly Kirk of Colorado Springs, Colo., and outside hitter Ashlynn Ward of Rexburg, Idaho.

The 5-5 Kirk had 198 digs and 210 assists for Rampart High School this past season. She played in all 82 sets for the Rams. Kirk also played nine years of club volleyball, winning three regional titles and four years of Junior Olympic competition.

"Kimmy competed for one of the top club programs in Colorado,'' said MSUB head coach Lisa Axel. "She has experience playing at the highest level which will make for a smooth transition to the collegiate game. She is a great defender who can cover a lot of the floor and makes the incredibly hard plays look easy. She will have a chance to make an immediate impact on our program."

The 6-foot Ward was the High Country Conference player of the year last fall and led her team to a district title and runner-up finish at the Class 5A state tournament. She had 339 kills and 80.5 blocks, helping her team to a 38-9 record.

"Ashlynn is a very versatile athlete who can play multiple positions,'' said Axel. "She has a strong arm and can put the ball away at either pin."

Axel enters her second season as head coach this fall.

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