UTC Volleyball’s Gauthreaux Returns For Redshirt Senior Season
Friday, April 3, 2020
“When she went down with a season-ending injury early into camp, it was difficult for all of us within our program to understand why it happened, because of all that she had done to prepare for a great senior season,” said head coach Travis Filar. “And it was especially hard on Mikaela that just like that, her season was done.”
Gauthreaux was coming off a stellar junior season in 2018, finishing third on the team in kills (172), total blocks (49.0) and hitting percentage (.241).
All three marks were single-season career highs and building on that in 2019 seemed inevitable.
“During her junior year fall and spring seasons, she had developed into a dominant right side attacker and blocker and was playing her best volleyball of her career at the beginning of our 2019 fall camp,” added Filar.
For her career, Gauthreaux has appeared in 165 sets and 55 matches, amassing 251 kills on a .191 hitting percentage and racking up 81.0 total blocks. In the classroom, she is a multi-year Academic All-SoCon, Dean’s List and Athletic Director’s Honor Roll selection as an Accounting major and expects to graduate this spring
The hard work and driven qualities she possess has transformed her into a go-to leader on and off the court for the program. About this time in the offseason last year, the transformation became obvious to the coaching staff.
“This time last year, Mikaela had become our program’s unquestioned leader on and off the court with how she has attacked her entire career here at Chattanooga, and that is with a growth mindset and an inner drive to improve her game and strength.”
Someone like Gauthreaux embodies everything a head coach could want in a student-athlete. Behind the successes academically and athletically, driven personality, and unteachable leadership qualities, having the chance to add her for a fifth year was a no-brainer for Filar.
“I knew right away that I wanted Mikaela to come back for her fifth year, and it did not take long for her to respond in typical, matter-of-fact Mikalea fashion. ‘Yes I want to come back and finish my career the right way, by being stronger than ever.’
A Message From Mikaela Guathreaux:
“I am super excited for the opportunity to be able to come back for my fifth year. The family atmosphere created here at UTC made this decision so much easier. I have loved getting to play with my teammates and for the best coaches these past four years. I look forward to being able to represent the University that has brought me so much, and compete with this team for another year.”