The women’s NCAA season comes to a close Dec. 21 in Seattle’s KeyArena, but across the country high school players continue to decide where theyll spend their four years of college eligibility, college athletes negotiate transfers, and grads sign on for the next level of competition as professionals.
Maddy Moser, a junior at Normal West High School in Normal, Ill., committed to Loyola Chicago for the fall 2015 season. The 5’6″ setter and Normal West team captain will transition to the defensive specialist position at Loyola where she plans to major in nursing.
UCLA, Michigan, Colorado State, and Minnesota all hoped to win her affection, but an unofficial visit to Purdue convinced Colorado Springs Alexa Smith to verbally commit to the Boilermakers. The 6’1″ Lewis-Palmer High School junior was attracted to the tough competition in the Big Ten and felt a connection with the team and coaches at Purdue.
In October, Shannon Thompson, a former middle hitter at UMass Boston, signed a pro contract with VC Tirol, a volleyball club in Innsbruck, Austria, making her the first UMass Boston volleyball player ever to play professionally. The 6’2″ three-time Division III All-American and two-time NCAA Division III Regional Tournament MVP hailing from Moorpark, Calif., also holds the school kill record with 1,803.
The Oklahoma Sooners welcomed Audrey Alford to their 2015 recruiting class in early October. It seems the 5’9″ setter for Southlake’s Carroll Senior High School and Texas Advantage Volleyball Club was destined to play DI ball as her mother Laura Alford played on the 1988 national runner-up Hawaii squad and then went on to coach at the University of Cincinnati. However, it’s her father Michael that Audrey will be joining at Oklahoma where he’s a senior associate athletic director.
Sheridan College’s Carley Gerving will move from the JC ranks to Division I when she transfers back to her home state to play at South Dakota State University for next fall’s season. The 6’3″ sophomore opposite verbally committed in late October, but will finish out the season at Sheridan where she provides crucial blocks and kills as one of the best junior college hitters in the country.
University of the Pacific’s sand volleyball team will benefit from the talents of Taylor Poncetta in the spring of 2015, which will be only the program’s third year of competition in the emerging NCAA sport. The 5’10” senior played indoors as an outside for Vision Volleyball Club and Saint Francis High School in Mountain View, Calif., but plans to focus exclusively on the sand game in college.