Abby Braswell is small in stature, but her play looms large for the success of the O’Fallon Township High School volleyball team.
“Abby is one of the most consistent 5-1 setters I’ve seen. She a very vocal leader on this team,” said OTHS coach Melissa Massey, whose team has compiled a 27-5 record this season.
The Panthers’ offensive revolves around Braswell setting up the attackers around her to slam home points.
“She is averaging 9.5 assists a game,” Massey said.
“As a setter, I am involved in almost every point of the game, and doing so, I have to be confident in every set I give and every pass I dig,” said Braswell, this week’s O’Fallon Progress Athlete of the Week.
The 16-year-old junior, the daughter of Stephanie Braswell and Robert Braswell Jr., began playing volleyball when she was in fifth grade at St. Clare Catholic School in O’Fallon.
Braswell said she likes volleyball because, “it is an emotional, intense, and exciting sport.”
She also likes the fast pace of play.
“If you make a mistake, you get the next point to correct it,” she said.
Not that she has a lot of miscues. It’s quite the contrary.
“She is also one of our best servers as well, serving over 96 percent,” Massey said.
“Over the years, my coaches family teammates and friends have all contributed to my success in my career of volleyball,” said Braswell, who, along with teammate Elise Smith, was named to the All-Tournament Team at OTHS’ Autumn Classic over the weekend.
O’Fallon finished third in the tournament, with Braswell dishing out loads of assists. She had 22 assists against Breese Central, 25 against Triad, 22 verses Red Bud, 31 against Champaign Central, and 33 against Pekin.
And her coach expects more good things to come.
“The girls always know what they are going to get from her,” Massey said. “Looking forward, I see Abby doing great things for our team during the post season.”
Curt Libbra: 618-654-2366, ext 21