BY MELISSA ESPINOZA
Photo Courtesy of Baylie Dashner. Sophomore volleyball player Baylie Dashner signs contract with Dickinson State University.
Volleyball is a sport of mental and physical endurance. One of COD’s volleyball player’s hard work has paid off. Sophomore Baylie Dashner will be transferring on a full-ride scholarship as an outside hitter for Dickinson State University in North Dakota.
Dashner said, “They reached out to my coach and said that they needed an outside hitter because they lost their outside hitter, who was an all-American two years in a row. So basically I’m going in filling in this spot for an all-around player. It’s some pretty big shoes to fill but I’m ready for this opportunity, and I’m so lucky.”
Dashner has always been an athlete and has played various sports, but fell in love with volleyball while in middle school when trying it out with a friend.
“I started playing at the end of my eighth grade because I had a friend that was playing as well, and me and my friend, Kimmy, we both wanted to start a new sport. We decided to try it out, and I fell in love with it. I played like a bunch of other sports [but] I never felt the fun and passion that I feel for volleyball,” said Dashner.
As a COD player, Dashner has participated in the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference (PCAC) playing in-door volleyball and two years in a row was named Top Offensive Player and in the 2018 season was number one in the conference and 25 in the state for kills (312). Also last year she was named PCAC’s Female Athlete of the Month for September.
“We played five or six different schools, and out of all the girls that were in our conference, I ended up getting picked from all the coaches and voted that I was the top offensive player in the conference. It was a awesome opportunity,” said Dashner.
Dashner has been able to display her talents as a player not only playing in-door volleyball but also in beach volleyball. She enjoys both, but beach volleyball has challenged her in many ways.
“Beach is fun but is mental. It’s a lot of pressure, and I’m still new to it so [there is] still a lot more learning, but it’s not at all the same sport as in-door. It’s difficult to be okay with learning when I am more comfortable in-door,” said Dashner.
As Dashner finishes her journey here at COD, she will embark on a new chapter in North Dakota as a volleyball player and a student.
“I’m ready for the adventure and I think it’ll just be a good two years to just try something new,” said Baylie, “It is very diverse here [at COD] and there are so many different types of people here, and I feel like everyone is accepting here. I want to bring that there and spread the kindness.”
The Beach volleyball season is coming to an end, but Baylie and her team will be playing their last four games of the season hoping to go home with a win while in the California Community College Athletic Association Championships (CCCAA).
The games on April 30 and May 3 are to be announced, and the last two games will be held on May 10 and 11 for the first and second days of the State Individual finals at Chula Vista’s Elite Athlete Training Center.