MSU Volleyball Adds Kelly Costeira, Emily Howard To Roster

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STARKVILLE, Miss. – Kelly Costeira of St. Augustine, Fla., and Emily Howard, a two-year standout from the University of Houston, have joined the Mississippi State volleyball team for the 2014 season, head coach Jenny Hazelwood announced on Friday.

Howard transfers to Mississippi State after appearing in 28 matches with 20 starts for the Cougars in the fall. A middle blocker, she finished with the second-best hitting percentage on the team (.218) and recorded 50.0 total blocks (6-44) in 85 sets played.

Howard, a Georgetown, Texas, native was named to the American Athletic Conference Preseason Team in 2013. She earned Conference USA All-Freshman honors in 2012 after tallying a .241 attacking percentage and 88 total blocks for second-best on the squad. As a freshman, she racked up 144 kills and hit over .300 in 12 matches.

"Emily adds depth and two of years of collegiate experience to our middle blocker position," said Hazelwood. "She will be ahead of the learning curve and has experience that we won't need to train."

Costeira, a standout defensive specialist from St. Augustine, Fla., joins the Bulldogs after starring four years at Allen D. Neese High School under the direction of head coach Jaime Simmons. The two-time district champion helped her 2013 squad earn a spot in this year’s Elite 8 en route to a 23-5 record.

As a co-captain of the Panthers for the past two seasons, Costeira earned Player of the Week or Player of the Match honors five times. She is also a member of the National Honor Society, National English Honor Society and National Society for High School Scholars.

The daughter of Nancy and Tom Costeira also played seven years of club ball with the latest coming as a member of the Beaches Volleyball Academy 17 National team where she was coached by Branden Been. Costeira earned AAU Volleyball Academic All-American laurels.

"Kelly is graduating high school a semester early and we are excited that she is enrolling at MSU," said Hazelwood. "It will give her a jump start on learning our system and becoming comfortable with our training methods on and off the court."

Fans can follow the Mississippi State volleyball program on Twitter @HailStateVB, Instagram @HailStateVB and Facebook at


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