Harris excels on and off court

Published 9:32 pm Saturday, July 22, 2017

Caylin Harris is one of three former Lady Saints to make the ODAC All-Academic team for the 2016-2017 year.

Holly Kozak, Brooks Gillerlain and Harris were all former standouts at Nansemond-Suffolk Academy who have demonstrated academic excellence during the 2016-2017 school year. Harris is currently preparing for her upcoming junior season at Shenandoah University.

For Harris, this is the second year in a row being selected to the All-Academic team.

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“Academics always come first for me,” she said. “It’s an added bonus that I also get to enjoy volleyball. It’s a great feeling to have excelled at both of these the past two years. Attending NSA and playing volleyball there built a strong foundation for my academic and athletic work ethic.”

Harris’ first two seasons at SU have been productive. During her freshman season, she played in three-quarters of the games and had 119 kills. She led the team with 237 kills and was second in digs with 241. The junior mentioned that her adjustment has been solid, for which she gives credit to the NSA volleyball program and academics.

“NSA prepared me well,” she said. “Playing for coach Robyn Ross made me a mentally and physically a stronger player.”

Now that her junior year is less than a month away, Harris is excited to continue to build with her fellow upperclassmen. Shenandoah will be returning one senior this year. With Harris being an upperclassman, she will have to step up into more of a leadership role, and she is excited for the opportunity.

“I’m looking forward to what we are having coming in and coming back,” Harris said. “With only one senior, I’m hoping to be a captain along with her. I’ve been a leader as an underclassman the past two years, so it would be nice to be named a captain this season.”

While preparing for her junior season, Harris hopes to improve her hitting percentage and defense.

About 44 percent of Shenandoah’s student-athletes made the ODAC All-Academic team. That percentage is good for second in the ODAC. Harris is happy not only to be a part of that but also to be held to a high standard as well. She had a GPA of 4.0 this year, and her cumulative GPA is a 3.94.

Harris is hoping to make an ODAC team for volleyball this year. Regardless, she still has her sights set on maintaining a spot on the All-Academic team as well.

At NSA, Harris was an all-conference and all-state performer.