Southern California is a hub for girls volleyball because of the amount of talent and the level of play in the area. There have been many of the local high school girls recruited into some of the tops volleyball schools all across the country. This level of play sometimes makes it really hard for most of these girls to be noticed locally and when they do it is something that could be start to great success. Norwalk High junior Ashley Whittall is one of our athletes that has gotten noticed by the HMG Cerritos Community News as the Fall 2015 Suburban League Girls Volleyball Player of the Year. They also recognized her on the Suburban League’s Girls Volleyball First Team Outside Hitter, along with Honorable Mention from the 2015 Press-Telegram’s Dream Team all as a junior.
Ashley has been committed to our program here at Champion’s QUEST since April of last year and is very responsive to the training. She has attended a mix of Speed, Strength, Power and Volleyball Clinics during this past year. With the training, Ashley has been able to increase her blocking vertical by five inches and her approach vertical by four inches, which would take her up to 26″ off the floor. Her upper body pushing strength doubled from 30push-ups to over 60 within a minute. Her speed with court coverage had one of the biggest increases,she decreased her change of direction (Pro-Agility) time from 5.31 down to a 4.63. With the time she has spent dedicated to her training it has shown it on the court which has lead her being recognized by the Suburban League with her two awards.
During the season Ashley has lead the Norwalk Lady Lancers volleyball team to a 16-11 overall record and 9-3 in league. This season she had 21 kills at Cerritos on October 8th, 20 kills against La Mirada High on October 15th, 16 kills against Mayfair High on October 1st and against John Glenn High on October 20th and 15 kills against Cerritos on November 2nd. All of these games plus her team leadership has made Ashley a standout amongst her peers which earned her the Player of the year for the Suburban League. One of the reasons for a high percentage of kills this is her arm strength and speed in her swing. With her quickness off the floor along with the height in vertical jump both compliment her ability to attack the ball.
Athletes just like Ashley are one of the biggest reasons why I love my career. She always displays a strong work ethic, committed to her training, dedicated on improving her skills and ability on and off the court. Ashley is not only a strong player on the court but she also is preparing herself academically for college by taking Advanced Placement courses that will help her increase the chances of getting an Academic Scholarship along with her athletic ability that will help her get an Athletic Scholarship. Any coach would love to have Ashley on their team because she is an athlete that will stay focused and always have a positive attitude during each session. I wish her the best of luck during the upcoming Club season on the 16’s Select with the So Cal Juniors Volleyball Club and will continue to develop her athleticism in order to give her a strong base to prepare her for college.
Coach Derrick Campbell, USTF-L1