By MICHAEL CHILDERS, CJ Correspondent
Over the years, Erin Cottrell has worked hard to be the best volleyball player she could possibly be.
That hard work has paid off for Cottrell in a big way, as the Southwestern High School senior recently signed a scholarship to play volleyball at St. Catharine College.
“It’s definitely a goal that I’ve been working towards since middle school,” began Cottrell. “I’ve always wanted to achieve this goal, because it has always been a dream for me.”
St. Catherine was the perfect fit for the former Southwestern Lady Warrior standout.
“I really loved the coach and the team - the girls are awesome,” told Cottrell. “The school is really close to home, so I can still be close to my family. I love everything about it.”
In the fall of 2012, the St. Catharine Patriots finished 12-17 overall and 5-8 in the Mid-South Conference. The Patriots will have a new head coach for 2013, as Jason McDannold will be in his first season at the helm of the program.
While at Southwestern, Cottrell was apart of five straight 12th Region titles, along with five consecutive trips to the KHSAA State Volleyball Tournament. The Lady Warrior was named the 12th Region Player of the Year in 2011 and 2012.
Cottrell has been a mainstay on the Commonwealth Journal All-County Volleyball Team, as she was named to the squad all four years of high school. In her previous three selections to the team, she was tabbed as the Player of the Year in the 2010, 2011, and 2012 seasons.
In her senior campaign, Cottrell had 464 kills, 476 digs, 85 blocks, and 118 aces.
Cottrell feels fortunate to have the prep career that she had during her time on the Lady Warrior volleyball squad.
“I achieved a lot here, a lot more than most people do, so it’s been a blessing that I’ve had the opportunity to do all this,” told Cottrell. “I want to thank my parents, and I want to give all the glory to God for putting me into this position.”
Skip Cottrell, Erin’s father and high school coach, is extremely proud of her signing with St. Catharine.
“I’m super proud of Erin, as a dad,” praised the Southwestern volleyball coach. “She’s put in a lot of effort - the long practices, four years of traveling to Lexington and Bowling Green to play club volleyball. She’s earned every bit of it, so I’m really proud of her.”
“As a coach, you want to get as many kids as you can into the system and hopefully all go to college to play. The reality is at the college level, very few make it, so as a coach, I’m really proud.”