MONROE, La. – ULM women’s volleyball head coach Patrick Hiltz has announced the addition of three student-athletes joining the program during the fall signing period.
Alix Christie – Middle Blocker
Christie comes to the Warhawks from Woodstock Collegiate Institute in Woodstock, Ontario. “I see Alix playing in a similar manner to Catherine Griffith, which fits perfectly for our offense,” said Hiltz. “Alix is still improving her game every day. The combination of Alix and Catherine could prove to be a scary one for the Sun Belt Conference for the next few years.” Throughout her high school career, Christie has accumulated a Major and Minor Athletic Award in 2014 and the Top Athlete Award in 2015 and 2016. As well as playing volleyball for her high school team, the Canadian has been a part of several club teams such as the Woodstock Warriors from 2011-2015, Defensa Volleyball in 2015-16 and Halton Hurricanes Volleyball club in 2016-17. Included in her experience playing with her club teams she has helped her teams to the Ontario Championship Runner-up in 2012 and Canadian Championship Runner-Up in 2012 and 2013. In the Ontario Winter Games her team finishes in fourth place in 2014 and in the Canadian Championships fifth place in 2016.
McKenna Webster – Setter/Libero
Webster comes to the Warhawks from Silver Creek High School in Longmont, Calif. “McKenna brings a dual role option with her to ULM. We can use McKenna as a defensive specialist (which is the plan) or she can serve as a setter option for us as well. Anytime you have someone that is capable of playing multiple positions what you are really getting is a pure volleyball player,” said Hiltz. “McKenna has a great knowledge and understanding of the game. That knowledge will be useful for her as we integrate her into our systems no matter what position she ends up playing.” Throughout her high school career, Webster has received First Team All-Conference, First Team All-Region, First Team Academic All-American, Regional Champion, State Qualifier, Team Captain, Academic Top 10 and a six-time Academic Letter Winner. In that time, the setter/libero accumulated 718 assists in her senior season and a Silver Creek High School record 1,405 career assists. She also set a Silver Creek High record with 52 assists in a match. The highlight of Webster’s high school career come from the end of her junior year when her team entered the regional tournament as the 29th seed and upset the number eight and 17 seeds to receive a bid to the state tournament.
Jayna Thompson – Opposite
Thompson comes to the Warhawks from Bishop Fenwick High School in Franklin, Ohio. “Jayna will add depth to our opposite hitter position which is a vital spot for us within our offense,” said Hiltz. “With Kalena and Sarah both coming back, the competition will be fun to watch in practice. Adding Jayna to the mix will create an environment that I think will make that position one of the strongest we have had in years.” Throughout her high school career, Thompson has been awarded Honorable Mention All-District in 2013; First Team All-Conference, First Team All-District, First Team All-City, Conference Player of the Year, District Player of the Year all in 2015; as well as First Team All-Conference in 2016. The Ohio native's most recent accolade is being named 2016 Second Team All-State for Ohio. Over her high school career, Thompson has accumulated 679 career kills, 111 blocks and 158 career digs. The highlight of her high school career was going to the state semifinals her junior year.
FROM COACH HILTZ
"While we are not nearly finished making additions to our roster, I feel like we are off to a great start. These players give us the freedom to be patient and find the right player, and the right fit, for this team. We have to consider team chemistry when deciding who to add to the Warhawk family. These three will enhance what we already have. We also need to look to add players that fit a team need on the court as well. Whether it be adding depth or replacing senior starters, we are close to having a very good rotation of fantastic volleyball players in every position. On top of that, the competition for those positions will be fierce. We will be better in every spot on the court. In the end, all these new players are about team success first. They understand that we win and lose as a group and each one of these new players has shown an understanding of team-first mentality. That trait alone has me excited to get them on campus and see how far and how high we can fly."