TRIMONT — It’s one of those great stories you can’t put down at night and Martin County West senior Lucy Larson is the protagonist.
The 17-year-old spiker leads the Mavericks’ volleyball team under head coach Kayla Zehms’ guidance.
Larson’s prowess as the Mavericks’ leading hitter helps her ignite their offense. She hits the ball with authority, using a 25-inch vertical leap to register 55 kills through the first seven matches.
“I have two great setters in Emily Anderson and Grace Bicknase,” Larson said. “We have a great group of girls on this team this season.”
She is serving at a 2.2 rating (3.0 is the best) and is 53-for-58 on her serves, good for 91.3 percent with eight aces.
Defensively, Larson has 92 digs.
“I want to play at the college level and I’ve always wanted to play for Augustana,” Larson said. “Even if I sit on the bench, I’ve always wanted to be a part of Augustana’s volleyball program.”
Augustana University is located in Sioux Falls, SD The Vikings’ volleyball team, under head coach Jennifer Jacobs, competes in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference, along with Wayne State, Minnesota Duluth, Southwest Minnesota State, St. Cloud State, Northern State, Sioux Falls, Minnesota State University Moorhead, Concordia-St. Paul, Upper Iowa, Winona State, Bemidji State, Minnesota Crookston, Minnesota State, University of Mary and Minot State.
“She loves the sport and you can tell by how much time she spends in the gym. She hopes to play at the college level,” Zehms said.
As a junior, Larson earned a spot on the Sentinel All-Area team, as well as a spot on the all-Valley Conference second team, finishing with a team-best 132 kills, a .115 hitting efficiency, 13 aces and 92.5 percent serving (174-for-188).
On defense, she had 291 digs and 10 blocks, displaying her versatility.
She played club volleyball for Martin County Elite under Paul Steinhaus. Larson also plays basketball and runs track for Martin County West.
“I love she is a multi-sport high school athlete,” Zehms said. “Lucy is an amazing athlete and definitely a team leader for our volleyball team. She works really hard in the gym and outside the gym.”
“My coaches are my biggest supporters,” Larson said. “I love it that my coaches and teammates support each other. It makes playing on this team a lot of fun.”
Larson said she began to build her vertical leap in eighth grade by running hurdles, as well as performing box jumps at home.
“I work out in the summers in the high school gym,” Larson said.
On the track team, she runs hurdles and the 100-meter dash, plus competes in the long jump.
If her life isn’t busy enough, Larson excels in the classroom, carrying a 3.89 grade point average. Her curriculum her first semester this year includes geography, finance, creative writing and drama.
“I’ve been getting my grades a little higher each year,” Larson said.
Larson is a role model to younger girls and it’s a role she enjoys.
“I don’t think of being a role model and one of our team captains as being under pressure,” Larson said. “I just do my best and when I get on the court, I focus on the team.”
She is interested in pursuing a marketing career when she is finished with college.
“I’ve gone back and forth with my career choice, but after thinking about it, I definitely want to go into marketing,” Larson said. “I hope to play college volleyball and I will earn a degree.”
Larson next takes the volleyball court at 7 pm Monday when the Martin County West Mavericks play the Westbrook/Walnut Grove Chargers.
Larson is the oldest child of Amanda and Matthew Larson. She has a younger brother, Max, who is 12.