The Falcon   |   Volume 83, Issue 53

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Senior Night victory ends volleyball season

Pregame ceremonies recognize co-captains Fellows, Swanson

By , Staff Reporter

Published: November 28 2012

Nov. 17 was the final night that seniors Shelby Swanson and Cailin Fellows would grace Royal Brougham as members of Seattle Pacific’s volleyball team. As co-captains, both players had an immense impact on the Falcons’ season.

The season wrapped up with a sweep of Simon Fraser, leaving the Falcons with a 14-13 overall record.

Before the final game, both of the team’s seniors were honored for their contributions over the past years at SPU. It was a bittersweet night for the two soon-to-be grads as they went through the motions one last time.

Fellows, who had a two-year stint on the Seattle Pacific team as an outside hitter, saved her best season for last.

“Cailin has been a big shot in the arm ever since she got here,” head coach Chris Johnson said. “She’s a huge threat in every single match she plays. The other thing about Cailin is she brought an awesome spirit. She’s always fighting, always wanting to win, always excited to be on the court.”

In the last game of the season, Fellows broke 900 career kills and was also named the GNAC Offensive Player of the Week for the first time.

Shelby Swanson, a setter, was another one of the team’s standout players this season. As her fourth season as a Falcon wrapped up, it was clear that her name would not soon be forgotten. In the team’s last game against Simon Fraser, Swanson racked up enough assists to earn a place in the GNAC’s all-time top five players for her position.

Although Swanson blossomed into one of the finest players in program history, Johnson remembers her five years ago as a recruit.

“I remember talking to her club coach when Shelby was in high school and I was recruiting her,” Chris Johnson said. “And he said, ‘she came to our camp and was awesome there. She could locate the ball and make smart sets – she was everything we need in a setter.’”

From the day she came to the SPU volleyball camp, Swanson knew she would be a Falcon. The principles of the school resonated with her own, as she is intensely focused on both her studies and her Christian faith. She is happily engaged and plans to be a pharmacist and have a family in the long run.

“Rock-solid, steady, dependable – all those describe Shelby,” said the game announcer on Senior Night. “Her job is to set the ball to the right person, in the right place, at the right time, and for four years, that’s exactly what she has done.”

One award was not nearly enough for Swanson this volleyball season. She was the only Falcon to be named to the Capital One Academic All-District first team. This was the first appearance on this team for Swanson, who has a 3.89 GPA with an intended degree in physiology. On top of her many achievements this season, she also earned a spot on the GNAC All-Academic team with four of her Falcon teammates.

“Shelby graduating is a huge loss. She is a truly consistent and reliable leader,” sophomore libero Bri Leenders said. “She provided a lot of stability for our team. She’ll be very missed.”

Swanson and Fellows, the dynamic senior duo, were both named to the GNAC First Team. This was an honor in reflection of the incredible season both players had. Swanson had the flawless sets, Fellows had the fearsome hits. Together, they brought SPU through a season that started off shaky and ended with bang.

Though the volleyball team is going to miss Swanson and Fellows, the other Falcons look forward to building a solid team for next year with the majority of the team returning.

“I’m excited about the future of this team,” Johnson said. “We have up-and-coming players who are getting better and better.”

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