Jan. 9, 2014
Auburn volleyball signee Alexa Filley accepts the Gatorade National Player of the Year award Thursday morning in a ceremony at Assumption High School. (Photo credit: Tyler Bissmeyer)
AUBURN, Ala. - Alexa Filley, a 2014 signee for the Auburn volleyball program, was named the 2013-14 Gatorade National Volleyball Player of the Year, it was announced Thursday morning.
Filley, a 5-9 setter out of Assumption High School in Louisville, Ky., led her team to a 36-6 record, a fourth-straight Kentucky state championship, and a final national ranking of No. 6 according to PrepVolleyball.com.
"I'm so honored and surprised and thankful," Filley told USA Today. "I've been told all my life that my height is an issue on the court that I need to overcome. It's so wonderful to be recognized for how hard I've worked to do that."
She was presented with the award in a surprise ceremony Thursday morning at her high school by Team USA beach volleyball player April Ross, who was a silver medalist at the 2012 London Olympics.
"We are extremely proud of Alexa for achieving this honor," Auburn head coach Rick Nold said. "The Gatorade National Player of the Year award carries with it a great history of success for the previous recipients, and we are excited for Alexa to carry on that tradition here at Auburn."
She recorded 1,248 assists, 334 digs, 102 kills, 58 blocks and 41 service aces during her senior season. She was a 2013-14 Under Armour Second-Team All-American, MVP of the state tournament and the Kentucky Gatorade State Player of the Year. Off the court, Filley has maintained a 3.91 GPA in the classroom and volunteered locally on behalf of Special Olympics, along with donating time to feeding the hungry and assisting in a second-grade classroom.
It marks just the second time that an incoming Southeastern Conference volleyball player has earned this national honor. Former Florida standout Kelly Murphy was the Gatorade Player of the Year in 2007-08.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Filley as the nation's best high school volleyball player. A national advisory panel comprised of sport-specific experts and sports journalists helped select Filley from more than 400,000 high school volleyball players nationwide. Filley is now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade Female High School Athlete of the Year award, to be presented at a special afternoon ceremony prior to The ESPY Awards in July.