Senior outside hitter Kelsie Sievers was recognized by the American Volleyball Coaches Association as an All-Region selection and also an All-American Honorable Mention for her outstanding season, in addition to being named first-team All-Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
While achieving her title as the All-American honorable Mention Award, Sievers has worked hard to achieve her accomplishments on and off the court.
Sievers changed positions from her junior to senior year. As a junior, she was a middle blocker. As a senior, Sievers was an outside hitter. In her new role this season, she thrived and was instrumental in the success of this year’s team.
“I know there’s votes based on your stats, and in order to get All- American, you have to get All-SCIAC,” Sievers said. “I found out I got All-SCIAC a week before season ended, the next week I found out I got All-Region, the next week All-American.”
This past season, Sievers ranked first in SCIAC with 3.58 kills per set. She also was third on the team with 60 blocks. For her career, Sievers racked up 608 kills, 142 blocks and 119 digs.
Sievers first became interested in volleyball because of her tall stature as a child.
“When I was little, everywhere I went people told me, ‘You’ve got to play volleyball or you’ve got to play basketball, pick one’,” Sievers said.
Once she entered the ninth grade, the 6-foot-1-inch outside hitter tried out for her school’s volleyball team and has been playing ever since.
“My team is my favorite part about playing,” Sievers said.“This year we had a group of girls who really cared about each other, and they made playing so much fun.”
Sievers recalls a specific conference game where ULV lost to Claremont-Mudd-Scripps in five sets, but because the team played so well, she still enjoyed it.
“I remember saying, ‘If I get to play with you guys, and lose the rest of the season and feel like this, I’d rather do that than win’,” Sievers said.
Madison Maynes, junior setter, said she has seen a huge difference in Sievers’ work ethic since her freshman year.
“She has always worked hard and tried her best but this past year she became a strong leader as well and helped pushed the rest of us to give our all, too” Maynes said.
Senior libero Kristen Sanchez said she has enjoyed her time with Sievers. Sanchez noticed improvements in Sievers’ work ethic and said her effort is apparent during games.
“When you improve yourself in the weight room, it also shows on the court,” Sanchez said.
Like Maynes, Sanchez said she appreciates Sievers’ efforts of leadership on and off the court.
“She’s put in so much time, and effort,” Sanchez said. “She’s been a leader, when she works hard it pushes us to work hard too.”
During her freshman year, she never got off the bench. Once sophomore year came around she began playing a few games. After sophomore year, Sievers was tired of being told she was not strong enough, or fast enough.
She started going to the gym and training, once she started doing that, huge strides were made in her overall game.
Sievers said that her newfound impact on the team is a result of wanting to be better than just mediocre.
“Jeff Hendershot, associate head coach, said that as Sievers began to see results from her hard work, it made her work even harder.
“Kelsie deserves the All-American honors because for her it was all about wanting to help the team,” Hendershot said. “Not about her personal accolades.”
Ashley Mubiru can be reached at email@example.com.