July 28, 2010
Golden Eagle volleyball signs setter Ashleigh Hancock of New Zealand
At least the sixth from "Down Under" to play at
COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – Ashleigh Hancock, a setter from the
secondary school of Waimea College, New Zealand, has signed a
national letter of intent to play volleyball this season at
Tennessee Tech University. Hancock is the second athlete from New
Zealand to participate in an intercollegiate sport at TTU.
“Ashleigh will be a tremendous addition to what we are
trying to accomplish,” said Golden Eagle head coach John
Blair, who recruited Hancock after seeing her skills on
highlight videos, was impressed with her athletic ability.
“She appears to be quite athletic,” said Blair.
“She was running the offenses and not just setting. She makes
good quick decision.”
Hancock graduated from Waimea College in December 2009 after
leading her team to the national title, earning the Most Valuable
Player award at the tournament. She was selected to the 2007, 2008
and 2009 to the New Zealand Secondary Team.
In 2008 Hancock was selected to both the New Zealand U17 team
and the New Zealand junior team where she participated in the
Junior Asian Championships in Taiwan. She was also named a captain
of the 2009 Junior New Zealand Team.
Hancock’s signing will create competition for the setter
position this season within the Golden Eagle ranks. Last
season’s primary setter Melanie Culp led the Golden Eagles
with 1,107 assists (9.88 aps) which ranked fourth in the OVC.
“Melanie and Ashleigh will both compete for the same
position,” Blair said. “Nothing is set in
Hancock is Tech’s third international signee this season
following men’s basketball players Dennis Ogbe and Liam
McMorrow. She is the latest in a short list of Golden Eagle
athletes from “Down Under” including soccer player
Hannah Bromley, the only previous student-athlete from New Zealand.
Others from Australia are baseball catcher Neale Adams in 1998 and
James Bennett on the men’s tennis team in 2005. Last year's
men's tennis roster included Nick Stafford and Yianni Doropolous,
also from Australia.
The Golden Eagles, who finished last season with a 10-18
overall record, including a 9-9 OVC mark, begin their 2010 campaign
against Albany, Aug. 27, at the Clemson Invitational in Clemson,