Washington Volleyball Inks Two Players For 2004 Season

SEATTLE - Two prep volleyball players have signed National Letters of Intent this afternoon to attend and play volleyball for Washington next fall, announced Husky head coach Jim McLaughlin.

Joining the UW volleyball program next year are Christal Morrison, a 6-2 outside hitter from Puyallup, Wash., and Alesha Deesing, a 6-1 middle blocker from Salem, Ore.

'We are very excited about the recruits who have signed with us during the early signing period,' said McLaughlin. 'Early on, we identified Christal and Alesha as two of the top players in the Pacific Northwest - and Nation - and targeted them as the recruits that we really wanted to land. They were being recruited by many of the top programs in the country and we are thrilled they decided to come play for the University of Washington. They are both exceptional players in their own right and will provide a wonderful complement to the current players in our program.'

Morrison, a former Kent Juniors club teammate of current Husky setter Courtney Thompson, was a four-year letterwinner at Puyallup High School. She also played club ball with Puget Sound Volleyball and was a member of the junior national team that earned a silver medal at the NORCECA Junior Continental Championship in Puerto Rico.

'Christal is an outside hitter but she has the ability to develop into a complete player who will help make the other players on her team play even better,' said McLaughlin. 'She is very athletic and has a world of talent. As she progresses, we expect her role on the team to continue to expand and this will allow her to utilize all of her skills. As Christal develops her eyes and how she sees the game, she will learn how to respond to the game at the highest level. She has a bright future in our program and beyond.'

Deesing joins the Husky squad after a successful career at Santiam Christian High School where she led the team to the 2003 state championship, earning first team all-tourney accolades. She also served as team captain and was named to the all-league first team. Deesing played club ball for the Webfoot Juniors 18 Gold team.

'Alesha will begin her Husky career in the middle,' said McLaughlin. 'She has all of the physical gifts to play at the highest level. She is fast, can jump serve and can play the game above the net. With all that, what really makes her a special player is her desire to succeed. She is ultra-competitive and has tremendous heart. Like Christal, we expect her to become a key component to our future success.

'Although they are both great players, what really makes them stand out is fact that they are strong students and great people,' said McLaughlin. 'It was a pleasure to recruit both of them and I can hardly wait to start working with them on a regular basis. We feel very fortunate to have them both in our program and are expecting great things from them in the future.'

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