Gatorade announced that Lauren Carlini of Aurora, Ill., is their 2012 National Volleyball Player of the Year. For the second year in a row, silver medalist April Ross surprised the winner with the news of her award, this time in Carlini’s economics class at West Aurora High School.
Carlini, a setter and right side hitter for West Aurora and the Sport Performance Volleyball Club, will attend the University of Wisconsin in the fall. In her final high school season, Carlini accumulated 333 kills while hitting .594, 303 assists, 156 digs, 92 aces, and 50 blocks, and led her high school team to the Illinois Class 4A sectional semifinals.
An experienced international player as well, Carlini set for the U.S. Girls’ Youth National Team that won a gold medal at the 2011 USA Volleyball High Performance Championships and was chosen as the tournament MVP. In 2009, she played for Team USA at the FIVB Girls’ Youth World Championships in Turkey. Ranked as the number one volleyball recruit in the country by PrepVolleyball.com, Carlini also received AVCA/Under Armour and Mizuno/Volleyball First-Team All-American honors.
The 6'1" senior has a 3.73 GPA and volunteers for the Geneva Police Department, the Illinois Math and Science Academy, and as a youth volleyball coach, making her an excellent choice for the Gatorade award, whose mission is to honor well-rounded athletes who prioritize character and academics as well as athletics.
Originally published in February 2013