Mount Olive, N.C. - Joelle Mafo, head coach of the women's volleyball team, is pleased to announce the new additions to the 2019 squad. This year's incoming class includes three setters, two middle blockers, two outside hitters, and two liberos/defensive specialists.
The first Trojan joining the team is Alyssa Jackson from Goldsboro, N.C. Jackson is a middle blocker who played at Cleveland High School. While playing for the Rams, Jackson helped her team win the 2017 and 2018 Conference Championships, a third-round berth in 2017, and a fourth-round berth in 2018 during the postseason playoffs. She was a McDonalds Player of the Week and a four-time Academic All-Conference honoree. Jackson played club volleyball for Carolina Shockwave. Jackson intends to major in business while attending UMO.
Keyonna Grandy is the next athlete to join the team. Grandy comes to UMO from Lancaster, Calif., where she played high school volleyball at Quartz Hill High School. The outside hitter helped her team win the CIF Southern Section Championship. She plans to major in Biology while playing at Mount Olive.
Our next freshman is Madison Goodman, a setter from Ewa Beach, Hawaii. Goodman attended Mililani High School where she helped her team take first at the Colorado Crossroad Classic. She was named the Most Valuable Player after her sophomore year and was the Most Inspirational during her club season. Goodman and her team were the Oahu Interscholastic Association D1 Champions her senior year and placed third in states. Academically, Goodman maintained above a 3.8 GPA during her high school career and plans to major in Health Management at UMO.
The next signee is Amara Eziakonwa from Tampa, Fla. Eziakonwa played at Wharton High School where she was a middle blocker and right side. She was a First-Team All-County honoree her junior and senior seasons. Eziakonwa plans to major in Psychology while attending UMO.
The final signee of this edition is Essi Penttinen, of Valkeala, Finland. Penttinen is a junior transfer from Indian River State College where she played the setter position. She was a State Tournament participant and helped her team to three regional championships in Southern Finland. Penttinen was the 2017 Club Play of the Year for her club team Valkealan Kajo. Academically she earned the team skull award, the personal distinguished scholar honor, and an award for great grades during her senior year.