Nov. 19, 2013
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech signed four high school volleyball players to join the Yellow Jackets in 2014, head coach Tonya Johnson announced Tuesday. The recruiting class includes Ashley Askin (Louisville, Ky.), Annika Olsen (Johns Creek, Ga.), Kiara McGee (San Antonio, Texas) and Sydney Wilson (Fayetteville, Ga.).
“This is a very solid and athletic class,” Johnson said. “I’m excited about this class and what each one of them will add to our program, both on and off the court. They all add depth and athleticism to their respective positions.”
Ashley Askin | Outside Hitter | 6-1 | Louisville, Ky./Sacred Heart Academy
Ashley Askin is a 6-1 outside hitter and a four-year letterwinner at Sacred Heart Academy under the direction of Eric Garvey. She helped her team to the district championship in 2013 and 2013.
A 2013 all-region selection, Askin is also a 2012 all-district honoree, a three-time first team all-Catholic selection and a two-time first team all-state awardee. In the classroom, Askin earned four first-team academic all-state awards, and was a member of the National Honor Society and Beta Club.
Askin played with current Yellow Jacket London Ackermann on the KIVA (Kentucky-Indiana Volleyball Academy) club team. In 2013, she was named an Under Armour All-American and earned Asics Challenge all-tournament team honors. In 2012, Askin was selected to the AVCA Phenom List.
“Ashley brings the mentality of being a hard-nosed kid who plays hard and has a great competitive spirit,” Johnson said. “Ashley and London Ackermann were on the same club team last year so there will be some familiarity for Ashley.”
Annika Olsen | Libero | 5-9 | Johns Creek, Ga./Johns Creek HS
Annika Olsen is a 5-9 libero and a three-year letterwinner at Johns Creek High School under the direction of Beth Stephens. Mainly used as an outside hitter in high school, Olsen led the Gladiators to the 2012 Area Championship.
Olsen is the 2014 Co-Player of the Year for the 6A division in Georgia. With her high school team, she was voted the most outstanding player twice (2012, 2013), and is a two-time first team all-state selection (2012, 2013) and a two-time first team all-state honoree (2012, 2013).
The Georgia native plays in the A5 club system and was named a 2012 16-under AAU All-American. Led by Coach Jing Hou, a former member of the Chinese national team, and A5 founding member Bob Walker, the 15-member team will travel to Beijing, Nanjing and Shanghai for 10 days in November 2013 to train with and compete against elite Chinese volleyball teams.
“Annika definitely brings more ball control to our team, but also has an incredible work ethic,” Johnson said. “She has a solid passing platform and her speed and quickness will certainly be an asset to this team.”
Kiara McGee | Outside Hitter | 5-11 | San Antonio, Texas/Taft HS
McGee is a four-year letter winner and two-year captain at Taft High School under the direction of Tracie Bendele. She assisted the Raiders to win the District 27-5A championship in 2012 and 2013.
She was selected second team all-district in 2011 and first team all-district in 2012 by San Antonio Express News. In her senior year, she tallied 680 kills to lead the Raiders to a 31-14 overall record. In 2012, McGee helped Taft reach its first District 27-5A playoff berth since 2003.
“Kiara is very dynamic and has experience playing in the middle and on the outside,” Johnson said. “Her versatility and athleticism will allow us to do some different things offensively.”
Sydney Wilson | Middle Blocker | 6-2 | Fayetteville, Ga./Sandy Creek HS
Wilson is a three-year letterwinner at Sandy Creek High School under head coach Paul Collins.
She led the Patriots to win the 2011 and 2012 AAA state championships, and helped Sandy Creek to the 2013 state semi-finals. She is a two-time Georgia Volleyball Coaches Association (GVCA) all-area and all-state selection (2012 and 2013).
With her club team, Tsunami, Wilson captured the 2013 USA Volleyball Junior National Championship. In addition, Wilson earned a spot on the 2012 USAV Junior A2 team and the 2013 USAV Junior National A1 team. Wilson and current Yellow Jackets Annika and Teegan Van Gunst played for Tsunami VBC last year.
“Sydney is athletic and brings a presence to the middle being 6’2,” Johnson said. “She has good lateral foot speed, hits well off of one foot and has a good feel for blocking.”