Ooltewah standout Sloan Sullivan will sign a volleyball scholarship with Middle Tennessee State University on Tuesday afternoon in a ceremony at the high school's Little Theater.
Sullivan helped the Lady Owls win district and region tournament and sectional titles last season and earn a second straight berth in the Class AAA state tournament at Middle Tennessee State University – the finished among the top five teams in the state.
A three-year starter, Sullivan, played in 355 games and recorded 528 kills, 882 digs, 59 assists, 140 aces and 65 blocks.
“Sloan is a hard worker and can play anywhere on the court,” Ooltewah coach Elaine Peigen said Monday afternoon. “She’s in the top 10 percent of her class and has a 3.9 grade-point average. We’re going to miss Sloan and it’ll be hard replacing her.”
Sullivan’s 2013 postseason honors included All-District 5-AAA regular season and tournament selections and a spot on the All-Region 3-AAA tournament team.
Currently finishing her athletic career at Ooltewah playing with the Lady Owls’ softball team, Sullivan was also chosen to the TACA All-Star team after last season.
She had the option of attending the University of Tennessee and playing club volleyball or choosing Middle Tennessee and continuing her career at the college level.
“I’m excited about having the opportunity to keep playing,” Sullivan said. “I really enjoy playing softball, but I’ve been leaning toward volleyball for some time now.”
With Sullivan playing a key role the Lady Owls defeated rival Soddy-Daisy in the district and region championship matches and Siegel in the sectional – all by 3-1 scores – to reach the state tournament.
In Murfreesboro, Ooltewah beat Siegel to open the state tourney before being eliminated by losses to Brentwood (55-4) and Ravenwood (47-5), which went on to beat Brentwood for the state title.
MTSU is coached by veteran Matt Peck, who is in his 11th season, and the Blue Raiders compete in Conference USA.
From 2006-11, Peck took the Blue Raiders to six consecutive NCAA tournaments, won two Sun Belt Conference regular-season titles and four conference tournament championships.
Peck is the winningest coach in MTSU history with a 201-101 mark. The Blue Raiders went 17-13 in 2013, their first season in C-USA.
“I really like coach Peck,” Sullivan said. “He’s very friendly and seems to care about the team. He’s been really helpful with helping us throughout the recruiting process. They had a pretty good season last year and I watched them play in their tournament. They did really well and they’re ranked in the top half of their conference.”
Sullivan said he hasn’t decided on what she’ll study at MTSU, but she’s leaning toward physical therapy.
Sullivan’s older sister, Morgan, played volleyball at Ooltewah and a younger sister, Tyler, is now at Hunter Middle School.
“When Tyler finishes player here I will have had 12 years of Sullivan girls playing for me,” Peigen said, “and that’s a good thing.”
In February another Lady Owls volleyball star, Courtlyn Ison, committed to play collegiately at Belmont University in Nashville.
Ison, a 6-foot-1-inch middle hitter with the ability to dominate a game around the net, was the District 5-AAA Co-Player of the Year and MVP for district and region tournaments in 2013.
(E-mail Larry Fleming at firstname.lastname@example.org)