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Falcon spikers earn academic recognition

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The Skyridge 2021-22 volleyball team has earned a national Team Academic Award from the United States Marine Corps and the American Volleyball Coaches Association. The Falcons were the only Utah team to receive this honor in the high school division this season.

The award, initiated in the 1992–93 academic year, honors volleyball teams that maintain a year-long grade-point average of 3.3 on a 4.0 scale or 4.1 on a 5.0 scale. This year, more than 1,200 collegiate and high school volleyball teams have qualified for the honor.

“Academic achievement does not happen by accident,” said AVCA Executive Director Kathy DeBoer. “I’m so proud of the hundreds of coaching staffs that make excellence in the classroom a priority.” This outlook was shared by the Skyridge coaches.

“The 2021-2022 volleyball team was a great group of hard-working girls on and off the court,” said Coach Deanna Meyer, who retired from teaching and coaching at the end of the school year.

“Our program is a reflection of high-quality girls and a reflection of our team’s core values of discipline, unity and the pursuit of excellence,” she continued. “The GPA of every varsity player was included in the calculation leading to this award.

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“In our program, we expected all players to maintain a 3.0 or better in their classes,” Meyer said. “We feel the classroom is a reflection of play on the court. Working hard through difficulty is something you do. You do not turn it on or off.

“So, if you can perform at a high level during stressful times tackling hard classes, performing on tests and so forth, you can also do it on the court and keep your head in the game when that next point is stressful and vice versa.

“It helps us be mentally tough as student athletes,” the former coach added. “It was a pleasure being their coach. It was a wonderful group of young ladies, and I am so proud of their accomplishments.”

The AVCA, an educationally based nonprofit headquartered in Lexington, KY, is the largest and most diverse volleyball coaches’ association in the world. 

With a broad mandate to develop the sport, the AVCA provides leadership, recognition, advocacy, and professional development opportunities to more than 8,000 volleyball coaches.

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Members include college, high school, club, and youth coachesserving both genders and beach as well as indoor competition teams.