Courtesy: Brandon University Athletics
BRANDON – The Brandon University Bobcats women's volleyball team is pleased to announce the commitment of Carmen Ross of Virden, Man.
Ross becomes the first product of Virden Collegiate Institute to commit to the Bobcats women's volleyball team, a surprising fact considering the vast history of local players that have suited up for the Bobcats in the past 11 seasons.
Ross however is no stranger to Brandon or Brandon University. Virden is just a 45-minute drive down the Trans-Canada from the Wheat City, and as such the 5-foot-11 outside hitter has played at the BU Healthy Living Centre many times, representing the Virden Collegiate Institute Golden Bears in both basketball and volleyball and playing for the Cats Volleyball Club, which is based out of the HLC.
Her experience is not limited to local competition either, as Ross represented Manitoba at the Western Canada Summer Games last summer, and was named a Volleyball Manitoba graduating all-star for her efforts this past season.
"Carmen is a real special student-athlete. She plays multiple sports, and excels at all of them while maintaining a great grade point average as well," says Bobcats coach Lee Carter. "Carmen plays a real power game. It will be fun to see her improve as she matches up against other players with the same power as herself. We're very excited to see what she will bring to our program."
Ross has been a two-sport star for the Golden Bears, playing basketball as well as volleyball. She was a member of the Virden Collegiate squad that won the AAA Manitoba Provincial title in both sports.
At one point in the basketball season she earned MHSAA rural athlete of the week honours following an outstanding week in which she averaged 35 points per game in five contests.
Despite her accomplishments in both sports, Ross has decided to pursue volleyball, and now hopes the jump to the CIS ranks brings her even more success as a Bobcat rather than as a Bear.
"I've been dreaming of playing at the CIS level since grade 7," says Ross. "I had always looked up to the Bobcat program as a young player. It's so nice to have such a well-established program close to home. Over the years of going to Bobcat games and then playing for the Cats Club, I've become really familiar with Lee's coaching style."
"It will be nice going to school somewhere that I am familiar with while still being able to travel to new places with the team. It will also have a positive effect on me knowing that there will lots of familiar faces in the crowd during home games," Ross adds.
She was an honourable mention in the Winnipeg Sun pre-season annual coaches poll for her grade 12 season, but worked her way into being one of the province's best by the end of the season.
Ross joins Brandon product Shayla Heinrichs as the first two incoming athletes for next year's recruiting class for Brandon University's women's volleyball team.
Ross plans to study in BU's Faculty of Arts beginning this September.