By Jim Wrobel
Special to GoHolyCross.com
Senior volleyball player Liz Ashton has been a big part of the Holy Cross volleyball program over the last four years. Not only did she contribute on the court during her career as she totaled 204 kills and 104 blocks, but her strong positive attitude and love of the sport made her the perfect teammate pushing everyone on the team to play their best. "Liz reminded the team the importance of having fun and loving the sport on a daily basis," said head coach Erin Cady.
A native of Milford, Mass., Ashton did not start playing competitive volleyball until her freshman year at Milford High School as she had previously played soccer and basketball up until then. At the start of her freshman year she had to make the decision to play either volleyball or soccer because they were both played in the fall season. After making the decision to play volleyball, a sport she had no previous experience with, she excelled for four years. As a senior she earned All-State honors, and was named the Mid-Wach A MVP and the Worcester Telegram & Gazette Player of the Year.
Ashton, who led the team in blocks per set in 2010, also has had success in the classroom at Holy Cross earning Patriot League Academic Honor Roll accolades twice. She is also a two-year member of the Holy Cross Leadership Academy. Ashton is a Psychology major.
Ashton talked to GoHolyCross.com about her four years as a student-athlete.
GoHolyCross.com: Did you always want to play college volleyball even as a kid and if so why?
Ashton: As a kid, my idea of volleyball was playing in a pool or with a balloon in the living room. I had no idea college volleyball even existed! My junior year in high school I started to really take the sport seriously. It was then that I decided that being able to play college volleyball would really impact my decision to attend a certain college.
GoHolyCross.com: Why did you choose Holy Cross?
Ashton: I chose Holy Cross because it gave me the opportunity to attend an amazing school while also playing the sport I love. I really lucked out!
GoHolyCross.com: What are some of your favorite things about being on the Holy Cross volleyball team?
Ashton: My absolute favorite thing about being on the Holy Cross volleyball team is the aspect of thirteen strangers who instantly become best friends. I am very fortunate to have been a part of a team that I view as my family here at school. We spend so much time together, and I have a unique relationship with each current teammate and each teammate that has graduated. That kind of support and friendship is remarkable!
GoHolyCross.com: The team is very active in volunteering in the local community. Can you talk about what it means to the team and why is it so important to volunteer and help out the community?
Ashton: We are all so fortunate to be able to attend Holy Cross, and we recognize the fact that many people do not have the resources or support to even consider college as an option. We love to give back to the community and to those who are not as privileged. It is a very rewarding experience!
GoHolyCross.com: What will you miss about Holy Cross?
Ashton: I will miss the amazing relationships I have made with many of the people who attend Holy Cross. I have been incredibly fortunate to have met so many good people here and I will miss being surrounded by these friends always.
GoHolyCross.com: What will you take away from your experience at Holy Cross as a student-athlete?
Ashton: Time management, time management, time management! Being a student-athlete at Holy Cross is like having a full time job while attending a challenging school. You learn to do what you have to do before what you want to do in order to be successful, and this is a lesson I will carry on in life forever.
GoHolyCross.com: Have you had a specific favorite volleyball road trip? And why was it your favorite?
Ashton: Our trip to Florida this season was my absolute favorite road trip. We had the opportunity to play a very good team and also enjoy the beach! What more could you ask for?!
GoHolyCross.com: What do you plan on doing after graduation?
Ashton: I am not exactly sure what I want to do after I graduate! Right now I am seriously considering teaching English in Spain. This will allow me to gain some teaching experience to see if it is a career I would like to pursue, while also allowing me to travel as much as possible!