TRAVERSE CITY — Just how good of a year was 2013 for Leland’s Alisha Glass?
USA Volleyball answered that question earlier this month when it named Glass its 2013 Female Indoor Athlete of the Year.
That accomplishment is our No. 7 story of 2013.
A setter, Glass helped the U.S. women’s national team win gold medals in the Pan American Cup and NORCECA Championship and a silver medal in the FIVB Grand Champions Cup.
This after just missing out on a roster spot at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. Glass was an alternate on that team.
“It was heart wrenching to be that close and not get to go,” she said in a Christmas Eve interview. “After missing out in 2012, I wanted to refocus my effort and set the tone for what I want to happen in 2016 (next Olympics). It was really important for me to get back to the basics, regroup and put a strong showing out there — just kind of send a message to the coaching staff that I’m in it for the long haul and that I want to be better as an athlete and teammate.”
So, in that regard, 2013 was an important year for the former Penn State All-American. And she certainly sent a message with her play.
Glass was named the Best Setter at the NORCECA Championship as well as the FIVB World Grand Prix.
The 2013 campaign was, in a sense, a transition year for USA Volleyball. Retirements, injuries, marriages and a pregnancy shook up the rosters, giving some up-and-coming players an opportunity to gain valuable experience on the world stage.
The team, which went 25-6 on the year, responded.
“We didn’t know what the year would hold,” Glass said. “But we were real happy with where we set the bar in terms of what we want the USA Volleyball program to look like and be in the coming years.”