Name: Taylor Christensen
Year: Redshirt Freshman
Hometown: Elk Ridge, Utah
High School: Salem Hills High School
WSU volleyball setter Taylor Christensen is this week’s Signpost Student-athlete of the week after recording 117 assists and 28 digs, including a double-double against Texas Tech, over three matches at the Lone Star Invitational tournament last weekend.
“I feel like I did well. I recorded a double-double, which I guess is a personal record for me,” Christensen said. “I feel like I was pretty consistent in my play. Overall I think I did well.”
Christensen’s best performance over the weekend came in the Wildcats’ five-set loss to Texas Tech (25-23, 27-25, 23-25, 20-25, 13-15) on Friday night. The redshirt freshman recorded 48 assists and 13 digs for her first double-double of the season.
Her 48 assists against Texas Tech marked the fourth time this year that Christensen recorded 45 or more assists in a match. She recorded a season-high 58 assists in the Wildcats’ match against Houston Baptist earlier this month at the Air Force Invitational tournament.
The Lone Star Invitational was the last tournament for the Wildcats before they begin conference play this week. Despite only winning three games so far this year, Christensen said that she felt the team’s performances in the various tournaments will ultimately benefit them in the long run.
“It was good for us, we learned a lot from it,” she said. “We learned how to get through some hard times, and I think we’re pretty prepared for this season. We worked out a lot of kinks, and we’re getting a lot better.”
Christensen now has 480 assists on the year and is averaging 9.6 assists per set, ranking her sixth in the Big Sky Conference and 125th in the country. Southern Utah freshman setter Faith Ma’afala leads the Big Sky Conference with 10.85 assists per set, while Appalachian State junior setter Paige Brown leads NCAA Division I women’s volleyball with 12.52 assists per set. Christensen is on pace to be the first Wildcat to record more than 900 assists in a season since Caitlin Penrod recorded 932 assists for Weber State in 2012.
Christensen and the Wildcats (3-10) will begin conference play on Thursday night, when they host the Montana Grizzlies (0-12) at the Swensen Gym at 7 p.m. The Wildcats have not won a home opener against a conference opponent since 2009, when they defeated Portland State in five sets (27-25, 16-25, 25-16, 16-25, 15-9).
Last season, Weber State lost both of its matches against Montana, losing at home in four sets (18-25, 25-21, 22-25, 18-25) before getting swept in three sets (19-25, 11-25, 22-25) at Montana later in the season.
“I think if we mentally prepare ourselves, we’re gonna do pretty well against (Montana),” Christensen said. “We have the physical abilities to beat them, and I think if our mental game is there, we’ll do a good job. It should be a good game.”