April 18, 2016
FORT WORTH, Texas - An elite group of six incoming freshmen including three All-Americans marks the first official TCU volleyball signing class under the helm of Director of Volleyball Jill Kramer as announced on Monday morning.
Five Texas natives and a lone signee from California make up the 2016 class that features the highest ranked Prepvolleyball.com recruit in TCU volleyball history. Kramer has signed three middle blockers in Sarah Langs (Fairview, Texas/Lovejoy HS), Makena Martin (Newport Beach, Calif./Mater Dei HS) and Ashley Waggle (Dripping Springs, Texas/Dripping Springs HS) along with two outside hitters in Abby Buckingham (San Antonio, Texas/Churchill HS) and Calli Novak (Georgetown, Texas/East View HS) and one defensive specialist in Shea Madeley (Katy, Texas/Cinco Ranch HS).
"I really like this group of players we are bringing in," Kramer said. "They have all been exposed to high-level volleyball, so I think they'll make a solid jump to the college game. They have all received great training from both their high school and club teams, which in my mind, means they are going to be ahead of a lot of other freshman out there, and when they commit to putting the necessary work in, I can really see them making a statement as they grow into our league."
Letterwinner from Churchill High School in San Antonio who helped her team to runner-up honors in TGCA Class 5A ... ranked No. 18 on Prepvolleyball.com's Senior Ace list which is the highest by any incoming TCU volleyball recruit ... named to the Volleyball Magazine Fab 50 ... 2015-16 Under Armour Second Team High School All-American ... 2015 USA Today American Family Insurance All-USA Preseason All-America Third Team ... 2015 MaxPreps Preseason Volleyball All-America Team ... San Antonio Express News Co-Player of the Year ... TGCA Class 5A All-State ... 26-5A All-District ... member of the All-Tournament Team at the Pearland Invitational and Smithson Valley's Mizuno Showdown ... finished her career at Churchill with 1,717 kills, 4.7 kills per set, a .310 hitting percentage, 181 blocks and 879 digs ... MaxPreps Sophomore Volleyball All-American & Freshman Volleyball All-American
Kramer on Buckingham:
"Abby is arguably one of the top prospects we have ever signed in the history of the TCU volleyball program. She was ranked No. 18 by Prepvolleyball.com, an Under Armour All-American and was part of the Fab 50 by Volleyball Magazine. I am very excited to get in the gym with Abby. She is a fierce competitor with a very high volleyball IQ and is on a mission to take her game to the next level."
Letterwinner from local Lovejoy HS where she helped her team capture the 5A State Championship in 2014, runner-up in 2015 and state champion in Class 4A in 2012 ... ranked No. 99 on Prepvolleyball.com's Senior Ace list ... 2015-16 Under Armour First Team High School All-American ... 2015 USA Today American Family Insurance All-USA Preseason All-America Second Team ... 2015 MaxPreps Preseason Volleyball All-America Team ... member of the USA Youth National team that earned a silver medal at the 2014 NORECA Continental Championship in Costa Rica ... played on the USAV High Performance A1 Select Team that competed in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. ... 2014 District 13-1 Blocker of the Year ... 2013 District 13-1 MVP ... TGCA 5A All-State ... 2015 LoneStar Volleyball All-Texas First Team ... 2014 LoneStar Volleyball All-Texas Second Team ... Dallas Morning News First Team ... named to the Prepvolleyball.com Soph 79 List and Prepvolleyball.com Frosh 59 ... MaxPreps Freshman Volleyball All-American ... played for Skyline Juniors Volleyball club
Kramer on Langs:
"She is a two-time state champion, an All-American and has been trained really well at her high school and club. Sarah is not only a great volleyball player, but a great person. She fits the culture of our team really well and she can score well out of the middle. She has a really long whip of an arm and is not only a great attacker, but a great blocker as well. We are looking forward to her contributing either in the middle or right side. We know she is the kind of kid that is going to do whatever she can to help the team."
Letterwinner at Cinco Ranch High School in Katy, Texas and Travis High School ... named to the 23-5A All-District First Team in 2015 and the 19-6A All-District Second Team in 2014 ... also earned Academic All-District honors for 23-5A and 19-6A ... in two seasons at Cinco Ranch, Madeley put down 317 kills, 1.3 kills per set, 43 total block and 552 digs ... played beach volleyball with current TCU beach volleyball signee Jensyn Bledsoe and the duo placed second at the USAV JBT Sand Madness Open in McKinney ... played for the Willowbrook Volleyball Club
Kramer on Madeley:
"Shea is going to play a defensive role for our team. She is athletic and has great defensive range. We are excited to get her in the gym and work her into our system. She also plays beach volleyball and that will only make her better indoor because you get so many opportunities to read and control the ball so much in beach. We are really excited to get her out on the floor with us."
Letterwinner at Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, Calif., under head coach Dan O'Dell ... led her team to the 2015 CIF Championship ... helped her team to the semi-finals of the 2013 and 2014 CIF Tournament ... led Mater Dei to the Trinity League Championship in 2013, 2014 and 2015 ... earned a spot on the Division 1AA All-CIF Southern Section Team ... in two years on varsity, played in 216 sets, recorded 306 kills, a .366 hitting percentage and 196 total blocks ... had the most kills in the Trinity League in 2015 and ranked top-3 in blocking average during her senior season ... member of the 2015 Santa Barbara Tournament of Champions All-Tournament Team ... played for Laguna Beach Volleyball Club
Kramer on Martin:
"Makena has been getting great training from not only her high school, Mater Dei, but also at her club, Laguna Beach. I knew right when Makena and her family stepped foot on campus, that she would fit not only our volleyball culture, but also the culture at TCU. I'm looking forward to Makena's development as a middle blocker with our program, as she will have the opportunity to learn from a large group of upperclassmen, who are considered some of the best in our league."
Letterwinner at East View High School in Georgetown, Texas under head coach Justeen Coulson ... also a two-year letterwinner in basketball and a three-year letterwinner in track and field ... District 17-5A Newcomer of the Year for volleyball ... earned MVP honors in volleyball in 2013 ... named Offensive Player of the Year in volleyball as well as MVP in 2014 ... garnered District 17-5A First Team All-District honors ... school record holder for kills in volleyball and all-time block leader ... named First Team All-District her freshman and sophomore years of high school in basketball ... all-time leading shot blocker in basketball at East View and holds the record for most blocks in a game ... named team captain in basketball and volleyball ... played for Austin Juniors Volleyball Club
Kramer on Novak:
"Calli is another kid that has received great training throughout her career at her high school and at her club. She comes from a very athletic family with her dad playing in the NFL for a long time and her brother Cole plays football here at TCU. She has obviously grown up in a competitive environment even at home, so she is a natural competitor. It is always good to have players like that in our gym."
Letterwinner at Dripping Springs High School ... helped lead her team to the Texas Class 5A state title in 2015 after finishing runner-up the previous two seasons ... Prepvolleyball.com All-America Special Mention ... 2015-16 Under Armour Honorable Mention High School All-American ... in her high school career, Waggle totaled 955 kills, 2.3 kills per set, a .412 hitting percentage, 246 total blocks and 225 digs in 422 sets played ... named to the All-District team ... 2015 Class 5A All-State Volleyball Team ... 2014 UIL Class 5A All-Tournament Team ... Academic All-District... played for Austin Performance Volleyball Club
Kramer on Waggle:
"Ashley has received a lot of great training coming into our program and has been apart of a lot of winning teams. She is a big jumper, pretty dynamic and has a great arm. She is a beautiful volleyball player in that she is very fluid and has a great arm swing. It is fun to watch Ashley play. We could see Ashley playing in the middle for us, but we could also see her moving to a pin as well. She'll compete hard no matter where she is on the court."