Athlete of the Week: Dimond volleyball’s Lauren Sulte
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Lauren Sulte is a senior captain for the undefeated Dimond High School Lynx volleyball team, and while she can dig and spike with the best of them, her best attribute is the leadership she brings to the team.
Volleyball is the ultimate team sport. No player can bump, set and spike the ball by themselves — and Sulte knows that.
“We are all unique in our own ways, but together as a team we are pretty awesome,” Sulte said.
Dimond volleyball runs in the veins of the Sulte family. Lauren’s older sister Brynn won the Alaska Gatorade Player of the Year award twice during her high school volleyball career, and both the state championship are GPOY are among Sulte’s goals. The Lynx came close to a championship last year, falling to South Anchorage in the championship match.
Off the court though, her goals are even bigger — looking to first graduate high school and then attend the naval or U.S. Naval Academy or U.S. Air Force Academy.
“She’s just that type of person. She’s a solid athlete, a solid person, she’s a high academic student, she wants to exceed in everything she does,” Dimond volleyball head coach Kim Lauwers.
Normally, high school athletes consider their physical gifts like speed or power to be their best skill, but Sulte gave a unique answer when asked what her best skill was.
“Honestly I would like to say leading, I like to keep everyone together well, keep us motivated when we are losing,” Sulte said. “Just make sure that we are having fun I think, I want to see myself as a leader on the team, that’s what I hope to be”
Lauwers also says that Sulte is like an assistant coach on the floor, and that she is not only respected by her teammates but also by the players on the other side of the net.
Being a star volleyball player and a student isn’t easy work, especially when you play for a program that practices for three hours a day.
“We are going from school to volleyball, to go home, eat some food, and then just study the rest of the night. So it’s definitely a lot of, how do you handle all your time, how do you have fun? But I am having all my fun at practice,” Sulte said.
The mood at the Dimond volleyball practice is one that you see around many high-level teams. The players are having fun and laughing but then get serious when the coach starts to talk or when they need to really work on something.
That demeanor helps them get off to a hot start for the season as Sulte and the Lynx look to keep the momentum moving in the right direction.
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