Freshman volleyball participant hopes to mimic commonplace of victory at Baylor

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Avery Carlson organising for Spike throughout the first ladies’s volleyball scrimmage of the yr. Kenneth Prabhakar | photographer

by Geo Gennaro | sports activities author

Bears followers, it is time to get acquainted with Bears volleyball freshman setter Avery Carlson—a Dallas space native from an outstanding highschool profession at Lovejoy Excessive Faculty. Throughout that point, she has had a number of success that she desires to soak up inexperienced and gold.

In response to PrepVolleyball.com, Carlson will not be solely the top-ranked setter within the class of 2022, however Baylor can also be the highest-ranked recruit in volleyball historical past – No. 4 in his class. Throughout Carlsen’s freshman yr in 2018, his workforce was one victory away from being state champions, they usually got here again with three straight state championships to finish an unbelievable stint.

In Carlson’s senior season, he collected almost 1,000 assists en path to the state championship MVP and was named Gatorade Nationwide Volleyball Participant of the 12 months – a title that has been awarded since 1995. Its first winner was Kerry Walsh Jennings, a three-time seashore volleyball Olympic gold medalist. Carlson’s elite checklist additionally contains 2021 seashore volleyball Olympic gold medalists April Ross and Alix Klineman.

In Carlson’s MVP state championship sport, she recorded a triple-double with 10 kills, 16 assists, and 10 digs. In his time at Lovejoy, this system gained 90% of his matches (document of 161–18).

Carlson graduated highschool in early December 2021, permitting her to enroll at Baylor the next spring. On the Gatorade Nationwide Volleyball Participant of the 12 months occasion, Carlson stated the honour she acquired together with her early nomination at Baylor boosted her confidence as she entered a brand new chapter in her life.

“It actually helps lots, simply to be acknowledged as an incredible athlete,” Carlsen stated. “It is very particular, and I am so grateful. It was nice that I got here [to Baylor] Quickly. It was a lot enjoyable studying to strike a stability between college and sports activities, and taking part in just a few spring video games.”

Being ranked so excessive, Carlsen stated he’s conscious of the added strain to carry out at a excessive stage, though his teammates are serving to him work by it.

“Absolutely there’s [added pressure]Carlson stated. “I’ve nice teammates, though that makes it lots simpler. Coming into spring, I used to be actually nervous. Simply taking part in with them and studying from them helped a bunch. He is a good chief and an incredible buddy.”

Head coach Ryan McGuire had nothing however excessive reward for the four-time All-American, whereas talking on what Carlson introduced each on and off the court docket.

“He is an unbelievable learner,” McGuire stated. “He is open to vary. He is submissive. Stress and strain by no means will get to him. And we will have unbelievable consistency within the setter. Women love him a lot. The goofiness of those that are extra reserved and steady than us.” It turns into extra tempting to be round to catch a glimpse.”

Senior exterior hitter Lauren Harrison stated age is the most important distinction between this yr’s and final yr’s workforce, however this new group appears sturdy to date. Earlier than taking part in a real common season sport together with her, Harrison provides Carlson her flowers.

“They’re all so proficient for being so younger,” Harrison stated. “Avery might be among the best gamers I’ve performed with, and he is only a freshman.”

The workforce appears very totally different with eight freshmen and three seniors in comparison with the 2021 group, which included 11 seniors. Nevertheless, the way forward for Baylor Volleyball is in good palms with this newly proficient group of recent gamers led by Carlsen. He’s a confirmed winner who has already earned respect and belief from his coaches and teammates.

“Clearly, I wish to win a nationwide championship,” Carlsen stated. “However simply making the workforce higher is necessary to me.”

Baylor Volleyball season begins August 26 at 4 p.m. at Shollmire Area in Fort Price. As a part of the Large 10/Large 12 Problem, Baylor will face the College of Minnesota.

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