Freshman Makes Varsity Volleyball


Trinity Ramm

“I was hoping to make varsity, but my goal was J.V.,” freshman Mekaila Aupiu said. “I was excited when I found out I made it.”

Trinity Ramm, Staff Writer

The pass springs to life in the air. Her head goes up, and her body shuffles right underneath the ball. Her hands enclose around the ball for mere seconds before it’s pushed back to the sky.

Freshman Mekaila Aupiu is a setter for the volleyball team and was one of the first freshman this season to make the varsity roster that is mostly composed of juniors and seniors.

“I’ve been playing volleyball since I was in second grade,” Aupiu said. “I started doing camps, and my first year of club [volleyball] was two years ago at Revolution in the Woodlands.”

Aupiu played volleyball at Schindewolf in seventh and eighth grade under coaches Sarah Landers and Katie Spangler. Current varsity volleyball coach Amanda Weese watched Aupiu throughout middle school and her club season.

“I talked to coach Landers and coach Spangler quite often,” Weese said. “[Aupiu] also participated in our varsity summer league.”

According to Weese, Aupiu came into tryouts “extremely knowledgeable,” about the game and at a higher skill than most in her class. Weese especially noticed Aupiu’s adaptability to the style and speed of play in which varsity players are required to perform at.

“It’s not rare for a freshman to make the team,” Weese said. “I feel that anybody who comes in ready to compete and has the expectations of a varsity team member can make the team, whether it’s a freshman, sophomore, junior or senior.”

Junior Samantha Normand also made varsity volleyball her freshman season, and just like Aupiu, she played for Landers at Schindewolf in seventh and eighth grade.

“My advice for Mekaila is to not let other people affect the way you play and who you are,” Normand said. “Mekaila is a funny, crazy and outgoing girl, and I don’t want anyone else to change that for her.”

Aupiu has the ability “to be one of the top ranked players in the area,” according to Weese. Aupiu has a few colleges in mind at the moment, one of them being The University of California- Los Angeles (UCLA) and the other being Texas A&M.

“I think Mekaila can play anywhere she would eventually like to play,” Weese said. “I think if Mekaila’s standards are set at a Division I level, she is competitive enough to play at a Division I level.”