News From Terre Haute, Indiana

College Report

May 1, 2011

COLLEGE REPORT: Three North volleyball players to play at next level

TERRE HAUTE — Terre Haute North’s volleyball program has made tremendous strides over the past few years, and the college ranks are starting to notice.

Three former Patriots played collegiately last fall — junior Casey Hayne at Oakland City, freshman Sara Baugh for the Naval Academy and freshman Bri Hill at Rose-Hulman — and they will be joined this fall by two graduating North standouts who dominate the school’s record books.

Outside hitter Katlyn Anderson will take her skills to Vincennes, while middle hitter/blocker Mary Kate Etling will suit up for the DePauw Tigers.

North Coach Kris Painter recognizes the contributions of the two college-bound standouts, and she knows they will be hard to replace.

“Both of these players had major impacts on our program the last four years,” said Painter, noting that senior Laura Mauer may be a third Patriot to continue her career. “We were 9-19 the year before they came in, and they really helped to turn things around.

“They have both worked on their games in the offseason by playing club volleyball every year since the fourth grade, which in turn has made our program better.”

Anderson and Etling were both four-year starters in guiding the Patriots to an 84-32 record over the past four seasons, the best four-year record in school history.

Anderson holds school records for most points in a match, most digs in a season, most aces in a career and most points scored in a career. She was an all-Metropolitan Interscholastic Conference choice last year.

“When I picked VU, I just felt it was a really good fit,” she said. “To be able to play volleyball during college is a dream come true.

“The VU coaches have told me that I will be a defensive player, and they have a huge need right now,” Anderson added. “At the next level I will need to work on my fundamentals; that’s an ongoing thing for all volleyball players.”

Painter expects Anderson’s success to continue as a Trail Blazer.

“Katlyn played outside hitter for us all four years, but will be used as a defensive specialist/libero at Vincennes,” she said. “I expect her to do very well there both as an athlete and student. She is a competitor and does anything she needs to do to help her team win.”

Etling holds most of the school records that Anderson doesn’t have — best service percentage in a season, best hitting average in a season, most solo blocks in a career, most assists/ blocks in a career and most total blocks in a career.

She likes DePauw not only for its outstanding volleyball program (22-14 record last year, 11-4 in Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference) but also for its strong educational offerings.

“I was looking for a school with a strong academic reputation and a volleyball team that has the commitment and ability to win a national championship,” Etling said. “I also have a great deal of respect for the head coach, Coach [Deb] Zellers, because throughout the recruiting process she reiterated the importance of excelling both on and off the court.”

Etling is a rarity in today’s high school sports environment as a three-sport athlete, and will conclude her career with 11 varsity letters.

She was the team captain and Gold Medal Award winner in both volleyball and basketball this year, and set blocked shot records for season and career on the Patriot hardwood this winter.

Etling is currently in her fourth year on the North tennis team, and last year was an honorable mention all-state selection and all-district choice with partner Morgan Mills at No. 1 doubles.

“I am now finishing the remainder of my tennis season, and we are working hard to improve on last year’s performance and succeed in the state tournament,” Etling said. “While at DePauw, I will continue to play middle blocker.

“I plan on working hard in my months off until I begin at DePauw, so I can come in as a freshman and become an impact player.”

Painter also predicts success for Etling at the collegiate level.

“She is a true student of the game and understands the total picture,” Painter said. “She has the ability to make others around her better due to her work ethic and athleticism.”

Etling knows what she needs to do in order to continue her success in Greencastle.

“I need to continue to work on my strength and quickness, because the competition will only increase and I want to better myself individually so in the end I can help better my team,” she said. “I look forward to the next four years of being a DePauw Tiger!”

Anderson looks back on her high school career with positive reflections.

“My Terre Haute North career was fantastic,” she said. “It went by really quickly; I only wish we would have beaten Terre Haute South during my time.

“I’ve created memories that I will never forget, and Coach Painter gave me lots of opportunities.”

 

Joey Bennett is a former Tribune-Star sports reporter and copy editor who now teaches at Northview High School in Brazil. He can be reached at tribstarcollege report@yahoo.com.

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