Volleyball - Thu, Dec. 6, 2012
Georgetown College volleyball coach Nick Griffin enjoyed
his team's success - advancing out of pool-play at the national tournament and finishing
with a 36-6 record - for a few days and then has been back hard on the
recruiting trail to ensure the high standard is maintained in the coming years.
The fourth-year coach is pleased to announce the signings
of Courtney Grafton and Maddie Kunkel.
"Georgetown has always taken great pride in our team
defense, and we are fortunate to be adding two of the top liberos from the
hotbed in Cincinnati," Griffin said. "Courtney and Maddie bring outstanding
athleticism, competitiveness and work ethic, which allow them to contribute
early in their careers.
"We envision them combining with current freshman Kristen
Schellhaas to form one of the top backcourts in the country."
Grafton is a 5-foot-8 libero from Ursuline Academy, which
is considered one of the premier programs in Ohio under the direction of coach
Jeni Case. The Lions captured the 2012 Division 1 Ohio State Championship a
year after finishing in the Elite Eight. Other team highlights from Grafton's
time at Ursuline include: two-time sectional champions and two-time district champions.
This fall, Grafton was named Third Team All-Ohio, First
Team All-League, Second Team All-City and a Cincinnati All-Star.
She plays club volleyball for the top Elevation team. As
she anchored the team at libero, Elevation twice qualified for the Open
Division of the USAV National Championships, finishing 11th in 2011 and 22nd in
"Courtney has been competing at the highest levels
throughout her prep career and will add tremendous experience to our young
backcourt," Griffin said. "Not only does she have one of the best passing platforms
I have ever seen, she is lightning quick, has a high volleyball IQ and
possesses great court awareness."
Grafton is the daughter of Marc and Rose Grafton and
plans to major in education.
Kunkel, daughter of 1978 GC graduate and
Tiger football member Jerry Kunkel and Pam Sears-Kunkel, is a 5-foot-3 libero
who played at Turpin High School, coached by Kathleen Carboy. A four-year
starter, Kunkel was named a three-time First Team All-Conference selection,
while helping the Spartans to a conference championship in 2011 and two other
top three finishes.
She led the conference in digs two of
those seasons, including 5.62 average per set in 2012.
At the club level, Kunkel has played
for Northern Kentucky Volleyball Club for the past seven years. Her team is
consistently finishing among the top squads in the Ohio Valley Region and also
qualified for the USAV National Championships in 2010. She was twice selected
as Triple Crown Standout Athlete at the Big South Qualifier.
"Maddie plays the game of volleyball
at light speed," Griffin said. "Her internal motor never quits, which allows
her to cover a ton of court defensively and impact the game in so many ways.
Once she learns to fully control that speed, there is no limit to how good she
can be. I can't wait to get her in the gym this fall.
Her major is undecided at this point.
She is relieved to have the recruiting process over to focus on enjoying the rest
of her senior year.
The tandem will help to fill the void felt by the
graduation of defensive specialists Lindsey Wise and Rebekah Moore.