I started playing competitive volleyball when I was around 14 years old. I first played at a club called Surf City for my 14’s year and then Seacliff for my 16’s year. I then switched to the Balboa Bay Volleyball Club where I played 16’s, 17’s, and 18’s. I also attended Mater Dei high school and was a 4-year varsity starter. During my sophmore year at Mater Dei, I was fortunate enough to win the CIF Southern Section Championship. This is still my most cherished memory because it was such a cinderella story. Unfortuantely, I never won another title at Mater Dei but did receive some personal accolades such as: MVP, All-League and All-CIF teams multiple times.
Fast forward a couple months and my Balboa Bay club team is competing at the Junior Olympics where we ended up winning the Gold medal and I was awarded MVP for all of 16’s. Rich Polk coached the 16’s club team then and still does to this day. Whenever I reflect on all of the coaches that I had in my life, Rich was the one that I feel really changed me the most as a competitor and a person. During my 17’s year at Balboa Bay, we won Silver at the Junior Olympics and I was a part of the All-Tournament Team. During my final 18’s club season, we again won the Silver Medal at JO’s.
I was fortunate enough to get a scholarship to play for the University of California, Irvine. My time there was incredible and I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world. David Kniffin was and still is the head coach and he was another one of those coaches that when I look back on, changed me for the better. I got to UCI as an 18 year old kid and I was pushed everyday to be the best version of myself. It isn’t easy being a Division 1 athlete and over the years I grew a ton both mentally and physically. I was faced with consistent adversity which only forged more powerful bonds with my brothers (teammates). Every year was a journey to win a title and each very different. Unfortunately, I was never lucky enough to win an NCAA Division 1 Championship but the culture of UCI has shaped me to who I am today. I will always appreciate UCI and Coach David Kniffin for giving me a chance to prove myself and help me grow to be the person I was meant to be.
Check out some videos of me in action!