University News

SUU Volleyball Adds Six Signees to 2017 Roster

Published: November 15, 2016 | Author: Chanel Barnes | Category: Athletics

Volleyball Signee DayThe Southern Utah University volleyball team has signed Kacie Huntsman, MaKenzie Van Uitert, Anna Cox, Janet Kalaniuvalu, Miranda Canez, and Elisa Lago to a National Letter of Intent.

Huntsman most recently led her Lone Peak High School team the state championship where they earned the 5A state title. The setter earned academic all state in 2016 along with being named first team all region in both 2015 and 2016.

The 6’0” setter lettered three years in volleyball and was named the Max Prep Player of the Week.

“Kacie has been a starting setter at a state championship school,” head coach Craig Choate said of the signee. “She brings a lot of talent to SUU, and we’re expecting big things from her.”

The Thunderbirds have also signed 6’2” outside hitter MaKenzie Van Uitert to the SUU volleyball roster. The Layton, Utah native earned three varsity letters, and most recently led her team to region champions while holding the position of team captain.

As a dual athlete, Van Uitert has also lettered in basketball at Layton High School.

“MaKenzie will be a big help for us on the floor both defensively and offensively,” Choate said of Van Uitert. “Her size is something we have been lacking.”

Also joining the Thunderbirds is 6’0” middle blocker from Morgan, Utah, Anna Cox.

Cox has collected two state championships at Morgan High School and was named Deseret News player of the week. She was also named All Area Team MVP by the Standard. Cox also excelled in the classroom as she was a member of the National Honor Society.

“Anna has produced state champions,” Choate said. “She brings a lot of immediate success and experience to the program, and she’s an excellent athlete.”

Additionally, the Thunderbird volleyball team signed 6’0” outside hitter Janet Kalaniuvalu.

Kalaniuvalu brings a wealth of success to the Thunderbird program after achieving all-state 4A first team by Deseret News and all-state 4A 2nd team by The Salt Lake Tribune. As a four-year varsity player at Mountain View High School, Kalaniuvalu finished her high school career with over 400 kills and holds the school record with 15 aces in one match.

“Janet is a six rotation volleyball player, and that will be huge for us,” Choate said. “She was the go-to kid on the Mountain View High School team, and she has a cannon for an arm. I’m excited to have her.”

Miranda Canez signed to Southern Utah University as a 6’2” middle blocker from Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Canez lettered four years in high school, was a 2-time district champ, 1-time district runner-up, state champion runner-up, and competed with 18’1 ARVC Shock in the USA Volleyball National Championship.

“Miranda really will help our team with her size,” Choate said. “She was an incredible hitter in high school, and we’re really hoping that can translate well to college play.”

Lastly, the Thunderbirds sign Elisa Lago from Chioggia, Italy.

The 6’1” outside hitter joins the Thunderbirds after playing with Volley Academy Modena in Italy’s pro junior league team.

“Elisa has incredible experience playing at the club level all over Europe,” Choate said. “We’re excited to have her at SUU.”


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