Nov. 21, 2011
Fullerton, Calif. - Cal State Fullerton volleyball Head Coach Carolyn Zimmerman announced the signing of high school seniors Lauren Kissell, Ariana Salazar and Chyla Thomas to National Letters of Intent last week, with the student-atheltes eligible to join the volleyball squad for the 2012-13 academic year.
The Titans, who will be losing four seniors at the end of the season, have lined up a few of their replacements with a pair of Californian middle blockers and an outside hitter from Georgia.
"I believe we have recruited great athletes and excellent students that will thrive in our program and in the academic community," Zimmerman said.
"All three of these girls have been the "go to" player on their respective high school and club teams and all have the potential to play big for the Titans. I am very excited to see what they can do."
Kissell is a 6-foot-1 outside hitter/middle blocker from Saint Mary's High School in Stockton, Calif. Salazar is a 6-for-1 middle blocker from Delhi High School in Delhi, Calif. Thomas, a 6-foo-3 middle blocker will be coming to Fullerton from Alpharetta, Georgia, and Milton High School.
"All three of these girls will immediately add depth to our middle position, but overtime we expect Lauren and Ari to be pin hitters and ideally six-rotation players.
"Their past experiences will give them an opportunity to help us to meet our program goals, which are to win more conference championships and earn our way into more NCAA postseasons."
LAUREN KISSELL (6-1 / OH-MB / Stockton, Calif. / Saint Mary's HS)
WHAT COACH ZIMMERMAN HAS TO SAY: "Lauren is a tremendous athlete who plays with a lot of enthusiasm. I believe she can compete for a role as a six-rotation pin player while adding depth to our middle position. We expect her to make an immediate impact on our program."
ABOUT KISSELL: Born July 12, 1994, in Sacramento, Calif. &\#149;Is a four-year varsity letterman for the Saint Mary's High School Rams under Head Coach Angela McShane &\#149; Is prepping to play in this week's CIF semifinal match against Oakridge High School &\#149; While with the Rams they have combined for an impressive 107-32 overall record with an unblemished 42-0 Tri-City League mark &\#149; Her 2010 team reached the CIF finals &\#149; Ranked second in the nation on MaxPrep.com's kill/error ratio breakdown as a sophomore and was a T-Cal First Team All-Star as a junior &\#149; Is a former teammate of current Cal State Fullerton player Elle Moffatt &\#149; Plays club volleyball for the Ripon Rage (Ripon, Calif.) &\#149;Outside of volleyball, would like to major in forensic psychology and get her master's degree in psychology
ARIANA SALAZAR (6-1 / MB / Delhi, Calif. / Delhi HS)
WHAT COACH ZIMMERMAN HAS TO SAY: "Ari is a really good athlete and will compete for time as a middle blocker in her first season. Given her athleticism I would expect her to be a strong player on our team and in our conference during her career as a middle or pin player."
ABOUT SALAZAR: Was born, Oct. 5, 1994, in Turlock, Calif. &\#149; Is a four-year letterwinner for Head Coach Adriana Nunez and the Delhi High School Hawks &\#149; Was named an All-Southern League honorable mention middle blocker in 2010 &\#149; Also lettered in soccer as a freshman &\#149; Plays club volleyball for the Ripon Rage (Ripon, Calif.) &\#149; The Rage have qualified for the Junior Olympics the past three seasons &\#149; Beyond volleyball has career goals of becoming a nurse anesthetist.
CHYLA THOMAS (6-3 / MB / Alpharetta, Ga. / Milton HS)
WHAT COACH ZIMMERMAN HAS TO SAY: "Chyla will impact our program immediately. She's an incredible athlete who will help us to maintain the size and the physical presence we need in our middle blocking/hitter position to be competitive in our conference and at the national level"
ABOUT THOMAS: Was born Jan. 5, 1994, in Portland, Oregon &\#149;Is a 2-year letterwinner for Deb Schaefer and the Milton High School Eagles &\#149; Averaged 2.40 kills and 0.70 blocks per set this season for the Eagles &\#149; Was selected as a first-team all-area player in 2011 &\#149; Has earned The Wall, Queen of the Court and Most Valuable Player Awards for the Eagles &\#149;Plays club volleyball for TCA, in Atlanta, Ga. &\#149; Has aspirations of playing on the USA volleyball team and becoming a sports photographer. Also lettered in track and field at Milton High School.