Nov. 21, 2012
RENO, Nev. - The University of Nevada volleyball team will have six new faces in 2013, as head coach Ruth Lawanson announced the first commitments of next year's incoming class on Wednesday, during the first week of the early signing period.
The initial members of the 2013 class are comprised of two middle blockers, two liberos/defensive specialists, one outside hitter and one setter.
"I'm very excited about the class coming in because it immediately makes us deeper and more athletic," Lawanson said.
Kiera Brunson, from Renton, Wash. (Kentridge HS) and Kathryn Groenweghe from Sherwood, Ore. (Sherwood HS) will be the middle blockers to wear the Silver and Blue for the first time in 2013. Liberos/defensive specialists Nicole Burdo of Elk Grove, Calif. (Elk Grove HS) and Madison Thorpe from Parker, Colo. (Chaparral HS) will also join the Pack next season. The 2013 class was finalized with the additions of outside hitter and Plano, Texas (Plano Senior HS) native Madison Morell and setter Lyndsey Anderson of Sparks, Nev. (Spanish Springs HS).
Brunson was a three-year letterwinner at Kentridge High in Renton, Wash., as well as a star for the Kent Juniors Volleyball club. She competed at the Junior Olympics on three occasions, taking part in 2008, 2011 and 2012. Her soon-to-be teammate in the middle, Groenweghe, played her club volleyball at the Athena Volleyball Academy in Sherwood, Ore. and her high school volleyball at Sherwood High School. She was named the 2012 Northwest Oregon Conference Player of the Year and earned first-team All-Northwest Oregon Conference honors this season.
Burdo earned four varsity letters at Elk Grove High School. She also earned two Delta Valley First-Team All-Conference selections, doing so in 2011 and 2012. Burdo starred on the NCVA Global Challenge Team, earning all-tournament honors at the European Global Challenge in Pula, Croatia. She played her club volleyball for the Sunset Volleyball Club, where she captained her team in each of the last three seasons. Additional help in the back row comes in the form of Thorpe, who is currently on pace to set the Chaparral record for digs in a season and a career. She was an All-Continental League Selection in 2011, with the current year's selections yet to be announced.
The lone outside hitter of the group is Morell, who earned three varsity letters at Plano Senior High for coach Lauren Moffett. She was also a standout right-side hitter for her Excel Volleyball club team. Last season, Morrell led all players in the North Texas Club Region in blocks and aces.
The daughter of two former Nevada athletes, including former volleyball player Lisa Anderson (1987-88), Lyndsey Anderson is the lone setter to join the Wolf Pack ranks in 2013. Possibly the most decorated all-around athlete of the 2013 class, Anderson added four varsity letters in basketball to the four she earned in volleyball at Spanish Springs High. The reigning 4A Nevada Player of the Year on the volleyball court, she holds the Spanish Springs record in assist and serving percentage. This season, Anderson led her team to a Nevada 4A State Championship. Anderson, whose father Scott played baseball at Nevada from 1986-88, also set the school record in the high jump in 2012.
"We will be young, but with our 2013 class the future of Nevada volleyball becomes very bright," Lawanson said.
The 2013 Class
Name Pos. Ht. Yr. Hometown (Previous School)
Lyndsey Anderson S 5-9 Fr. Sparks, Nev. (Spanish Springs HS)
Kiera Brunson MB 6-0 Fr. Renton, Wash. (Kentridge HS)
Nicole Burdo L/DS 5-5 Fr. Elk Grove, Calif. (Elk Grove HS)
Kathryn Groenweghe MB 6-2 Fr. Sherwood, Ore. (Sherwood HS)
Madison Morell RS 5-11 Fr. Plano, Texas (Plano Senior HS)
Madison Thorpe L/DS 5-5 Fr. Parker, Colo. (Chaparral HS)