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Andrews uses academics to earn a volleyball grant-in-aid with Columbia College
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LUGOFF-ELGIN SENIOR Sarah Andrews signed her national volleyball letter-of-intent with Columbia College while flanked by her parents, Andrew and Cindy Andrews. Also joining the signing ceremony were, back row from left, L-E principal Tommy Gladden, Columbia College head volleyball coach Katie Welsh, L-E head volleyball coach Jessica Mullins, Sarahs younger sister, Maddie Andrews, and L-E athletic director Scott Jones.
Sarah Andrews was closing the deal on her becoming an incoming freshman at Columbia College this fall when an admissions counselor at the school saw that the soon-to-be Lugoff-Elgin High School graduate had played volleyball for the Lady Demons.Before she left the interview, Andrews was asked if she was interested in continuing to play the sport in college. After a few seconds of thought, Andrews said that she would like the opportunity to play at the collegiate level.“I was already accepted (into Columbia College) and the admissions lady said, ‘Why don’t you try out for volleyball since you played in high school?’” Andrews said of her talk with the counselor.That conversation put the wheels in motion for Andrews and first-year Fighting Koalas’ head coach Katie Welsh, who was elevated to the top seat at the head of the Columbia bench after being as assistant coach at the school for the past five seasons. After an on-campus tryout, Andrews was offered an athletic grant-in-aid, which she signed last Wednesday.In a day and age where the athlete in the term “student-athlete” all-too-often overshadows the student part of the equation, Sarah Andrews used her work in the classroom to lay the groundwork for a chance to play a sport at the collegiate level.Welsh said this scenario is not how things usually work when it comes to recruiting.