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Volleyball Finalizes Five-Woman Signing Class
Women's Volleyball  . 

Volleyball Finalizes Five-Woman Signing Class

The 2021 newcomers join the roster from four different states

COLUMBIA, S.C – The 2021 freshman class was unveiled for South Carolina volleyball on Wednesday night. The Gamecocks bring in five high school standouts at four different positions to add to the team’s depth next fall.
“I think it’s a really well-rounded class. All great people, very driven,” head coach Tom Mendoza said. “I think they’re going to fit in really well with the culture we’re trying to build and the direction we’re trying to go on the court, so I couldn’t be more excited. We’re going to have to wait a little bit until we get them in the gym, but I’m really excited to see what they all do in a South Carolina uniform.”
Joining the roster next fall are…
Oby Anadi | 6-3 | Middle | Slidell, La. | Northshore HS | WD Nation

  • Daughter of EJ and the late Allison Anadi.
  • Has one brother, Kosi, and two sisters, Adora and EJ.
  • Plans to major in Public Relations at South Carolina, with the career goal of becoming a lawyer.
  • Earned four varsity letters at Northshore High School.
  • Recorded 353 kills and 115.5 blocks for her high school as a junior.
  • Two-time All-District honoree.
  • Trains at the club level with WD Nation.  

“I think Oby, like the rest of our ’21 class, is just a really good person, works hard, keeps getting better every time we got to see her play,” Mendoza said. “Great blend of physicality, movement, her arm swing is coming along. We try not to compare players, but I see a lot of the same things we liked with Ellie Ruprich, where some of the blocking instincts are there, the lateral movement’s there, ability to get off the ground fast are there. It’s just getting her ready for how to be successful at the college game. We really like the direction we’re going in the middle position and I think Oby is a huge part of that.”
Morgan Carter | 5-9 | DS/Libero | Brentwood, Tenn. | Plano West HS (Texas) | Madfrog Volleyball

  • Daughter of Kini Beatty and Alan Carter.
  • Has one sister, Kamryn, and one brother, Bryce. Her sister played volleyball at McKendree University.
  • Plans to major in occupational therapy at South Carolina.
  • Born in Illinois, but became a four year varsity letter winner and earned two state championships will attending high school in Tennessee. 
  • Led Plano West to the state championship final in 2019 after moving with her family to Texas.
  • Competed and trained with the Madfrog Volleyball 18 National Green club team in Texas.
  • Made Prep Volleyball’s Fresh 59, Soph 79 and High School All-American teams during her high school career.
  • Member of the AVCA Phenom List.
  • Spent time training with USA Volleyball’s A1 Select and A1 Youth teams. 

“Morgan brings that great combination of skill and calm to the position,” Mendoza said. “Recruiting the libero position, I think it’s often the hardest to recruit and evaluate because … they’re not seeing those aggressive swings yet (at the juniors level). So you’re trying to really kind of imagine what their movements are going to look like four years down the road when they’re having to dig those hard-driven attacks and then the really flat driven serves. She’s going to translate well to the college game, her ability to make plays look easy is exciting because that means that as the game speeds up she’s going to be able to handle that. I see a lot of good young liberos that are diving all over the place and Morgan has that athleticism but she also has the ability to make plays look easy and we’re really excited about that. She can make an impact right away, but we’re also excited for her long term potential.”
Lauren McCutcheon | 6-1 | Outside Hitter | Simpsonville, S.C. | J.L. Mann Academy | Upward Stars

  • Daughter of Jason Pomar and Kendra Stout.
  • Has two sisters, Jordyn and Kennedi.
  • Father Jason played baseball and football at South Carolina, mother Kendra played softball at Carolina. Her mother ranks fourth in program history for games played (259) and led the Gamecocks to the SEC championship and Women’s College World Series in 1997. Her father pitched for the Gamecocks, making 87 appearances over four seasons – tied for sixth in program history – and played for the football team during the 1996 season. He was taken in the 13th round of the MLB draft by the Oakland Athletics.
  • Plans to major in exercise science, with a career goal of becoming an athletic trainer.
  • Earned five letters at J.L. Mann Academy, making the all-state and AVCA all-region teams four times.
  • 2019 Prep Volleyball High School All-American.
  • 2019 and 2020 Region Player of the Year.
  • 2020 Under Armour Honorable Mention All-American
  • Played club volleyball at Upward Stars, making the JVA All-National Team and USAV All-Region team in her time at the club level.
  • Made the AVCA’s Phenom Watch List.
  • Represented the United States as a member of the Deaf Volleyball National Team, winning gold at the Pan American Deaf Games. 

“Lauren was one when we first got to South Carolina, I think she was playing some outside for her high school but she was playing middle mostly in club. She had a great arm and she had some of the blocking ability, but when she transitioned to the outside hitter position was when she really started taking off,” Mendoza said. “Credit Lauren, we said if you’re going to be elite at this level your passing has got to be the strength of your game. She worked her tail off and she’s one of the best passers I get to see at her age. When you have those combinations of skill at the outside position, it’s incredibly valuable for any team and that’s the direction we’re trying to go on the left side. I think she’s going to fit well with our group, and be one of those driving factors.”
Emmy Rollins | 6-1 | Outside Hitter | Florence, S.C. | West Florence HS | Carolina Rogue

  • Daughter of James and Cynthia Rollins.
  • Has one older sister, Hagan.
  • Plans to major in studio art at South Carolina, with a career goal of working in the graphic design field.
  • Earned three letters at West Florence High School, making the all-state team twice and AVCA all-region team four times.
  • Named her high school’s athlete of the year twice.
  • Earned AVCA National Player of the Week honors for the state of South Carolina on Oct. 6, 2020.
  • 2020 Under Armour Honorable Mention All-American.
  • Joining Carolina Rogue for the new club season. 

“Emmy brings some length to the left side position, the game just keeps getting more and more physical and she’s got that size, athleticism, and has been working on her all-around game. She’s also a good blocker on the left side, which tends to be undervalued because there’s so many other things they have to do at the left side position,” Mendoza said. “I think her movement, ability to press and block hard-driven attacks from physical attackers is something that I think she’s going to bring right away. The sky’s limit for her potential, she’s going to come in and keep working and try to get better each day, but we really like where she’s at now.”
Claire Wilson | 6-3 | Setter | Nashville, Tenn. | Harpeth Hall School | Tennessee Performance Volleyball/Alliance Volleyball Club

  • Daughter of Kerry Wilson and the late Shawn Wilson.
  • Has one older sister, Chloe Wilson, who plays volleyball at Wake Forest.
  • Plans to major in business at South Carolina, with a career goal of becoming a financial analyst.
  • Earned four letters at Harpeth Hall School, making the all-region team for each of her first three seasons and earning her region’s Most Valuable Player award as a senior.
  • Played club volleyball for Tennessee Performance Volleyball for three years, and now competes for Alliance Volleyball Club.
  • Named to the JVA Class of 2021 watch list and is on the Prep Volleyball Top-150 recruits list.

“Each time we watched Claire, we just liked her more and more. She catches your eye, because anytime you’re a 6-3 setter you’re going to at least going to get a look. The more we watched her play, the more we realized that she has the complete game,” Mendoza said. “Her hands are very smooth, she’s able to set different options from all over the court, she moves well and gives herself options to set anywhere from any pass quality. Claire brings that combination of being able to score points in the front row from an attacking standpoint, she blocks her position, she sets her hitters well because her contact points is good and that connection with the hitters as fast and she defends her position well and she’s got a good serve. I think she’s going to be a leader of this team for years to come and we’re excited to get her in our gym.”

Follow @GamecockVolley on social media for updates on the team entering the spring portion of the 2020-21 season.