Student-Athlete: Elexis Coleman

Natalie Mander, Sports Editor

Student-athlete Elexis Coleman has pushed her way into the headlines of Joliet West athletics in her 2013 volleyball season. Her hard work and perseverance has taken her skills to the next level, and her journey has been all the worth while.

Coleman began playing basketball at the age of seven. At the age of ten she picked up volleyball and has been in love with it ever since. She attended Hufford Junior High in Joliet where she played on the basketball and volleyball team.

Coleman carried her love for these sports in high school, where she devotes her time and effort to Joliet West athletics. Now in her junior year, she plays on the varsity volleyball team as a middle hitter. This is her third year on the varsity team. In the winter, she switches gears and plays basketball.

Many of Coleman’s coaches are very impressed with her effort and motivation. Varsity volleyball coach and mentor Mrs. De la Cruz says, “She is a smart ball player and works hard during practice and in games. Elexis has natural talent in the game of volleyball, but her work ethic will allow her to achieve her goal of playing college volleyball. Being a middle, Elexis runs a fast offense, which is fun for everyone to see. The whole team gets excited when Elexis puts a ball down. She is a great young lady and I am looking forward to working with her the rest of this season and next year.”

While she does dedicate herself to both sports, Coleman does favor volleyball more than basketball. As soon as the school season ends, she continues to improve her skills by playing on a travel volleyball team from November to July. Since the age of 13, she has played for UNO Volleyball club located in Joliet. Playing on the Elite level, Coleman’s team travels around the state to various tournaments. At the end of the season, the team travels to nationals, which is held in numerous parts of the country. “My greatest sports experience I’ve had was definitely playing in nationals,” says Coleman.

Most recently, Coleman’s team finished their 2012-2013 season in Dallas, Texas where the team placed at the top of their division. During the long season, she bonded with her teammates, creating solid chemistry on and off the court.

After high school, Coleman plans to play volleyball at a division one college. Coleman has looked into some universities such as Radford University, Central Connecticut State University, and Liberty University where she can further improve her skills.

For six years, Coleman has dedicated her time and effort to continuing her dreams of success. Her advice for athletes: “Just keep working hard. Don’t stop doing what you love and keep going. Keep improving on your skills and good things will come your way.”