Channel 11 talked with Pitt Volleyball Senior Layne Van Buskirk about her Olympic aspirations.
The Canadian Women’s National Volleyball Team named Van Buskirk to their roster. It was a call she had waited for her entire life. Van Buskirk said, “My first reaction was to call my dad. He gets super pumped about these things.”
The Canadian National team will have several competitions over the summer: The Challenge Cup – a continental pre-qualifier for Volleyball Nations League to be held in Chateauguay, Quebec, May 31 to June 2; The Pan American Games in Peru; and the Women’s Olympic Qualifier in Russia, August 2-4, as well as other select international competitions.
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She’s one of the youngest players on the team. “There's only two of us, this is our first year doing it, so it's like just a great experience to be with so much experience,” said Van Buskirk
Van Buskirk received the 2018 American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-America Honorable Mention. She ranked ninth in the nation and second in the ACC with a .403 hitting percentage in 2018, which rates as the third-best season percentage in school history.
She also ranked third in the ACC with 1.42 blocks per set. She posted the fifth-most season block assists in school history with 137, and tied for the fifth-most total blocks in a season with 161.
But only 14 of the 18 players will make the roster for each competition. Van Buskirk is competitive, but taking it in stride, saying, “Just being able to represent my country and represent Pitt through that will be such an honor.”
“Congratulations to Layne,” Pitt head coach Dan Fisher said. “Nobody gets to this level without an incredible amount of work and sacrifice. She’s been in involved with Team Canada in the past but making the A Team for the first time is a moment every athlete will remember for the rest of their career. We’re excited for her, and we’re also excited for the prospect that she could come back to Pittsburgh even better for the fall season.”
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