June 25th, 2024

Kodiaks women’s volleyball signs Sauder

By Lethbridge Herald on August 11, 2021.

The Lethbridge College Kodiaks women’s volleyball team has made another addition to its roster in time for the 2021-22 Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference season.

On Monday, the Kodiaks announced the commitment of Abby Sauder from Swift Current Comprehensive High School.

Sauder is a left side who will join the Kodiaks after training extensively with Team Saskatchewan this summer.

“Abby is an exciting pick-up for us,” said Kodiaks head coach Anna Schwark.

“She is a very talented volleyball player and at this level it is difficult to come by an athlete with her height that hasn’t been forced into the middle position all her life. I am really looking forward to seeing her in September after training with Team Saskatchewan, since she will be coming in just having had some fantastic coaching and a lot of quality training opportunities.”

The signing of Sauder will kick up the internal competition once training camp starts with first-year athletes like her pushing hard for playing time.

“I think Abby is going to be able to jump right in and push our returning athletes in the outside hitter position, as she takes her training very seriously and works really hard to always be improving,” said Schwark.

“Skill-wise, Abby is great. She has got the timing down on a faster-paced offence and is a very reliable serve receiver and defender. I really think in a few years Abby will be a knockout outside hitter and that she will be able to go head-to-head with the best in the league.”

For Sauder, Lethbridge College offered the ideal blend of competitive athletics and academics.

“I’ve heard some really good things about the Kodiaks and I know a couple of people who play for the men’s team,” she said.

“And I know they have a really good Nursing program, so I was really excited because I’ve heard from all the nurses (in Swift Current) that the best nurses come from Lethbridge, and so academically I think it was also my best choice.”

With the COVID-19 pandemic limiting her training opportunities in Swift Current, Sauder had to move down the highway to Saskatchewan’s capital in her Grade 12 year.

“We didn’t get to practise very much in Swift Current, and I actually had to go train with the team in Regina,” she said.

“So, I had to move for the second semester of my Grade 12 year and take online classes, which was pretty tough, so that was a big challenge. But it was a good opportunity for me and the best one I could get with the circumstances.”

Sauder now settles into her new home in southern Alberta.

“I’m really looking forward to getting to know the girls and just being able to play a high-level game with a bunch of new people, developing my skills more and having a good time,” she said.

The Kodiaks have announced their return-to-play schedule for the 2021-22 ACAC season.

The Kodiaks men’s and women’s volleyball teams begin regular season play Nov. 12 at home against Red Deer College.

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