Even though they have yet to play their first game, junior middle blocker Mekana Barnes is expecting big things out of the Rams volleyball team.
“There is great athleticism on the team from returning players and new freshmen,” the six-footer said. “We are still putting it all together, but we look good.”
The Mountain West is expecting big things out of Barnes as well, naming her to the preseason all-conference team along with teammate Ashley Fornstrom, a junior setter.
“It is good to be an example for the team,” said Barnes, a ThunderRidge High School graduate. “It is nice that it helps the program stand out more.”
Barnes explained that being named all-conference adds more pressure to perform not for herself, but for her team.
“The pressure that I feel is being accountable to my coaches and my team,” she said.
Barnes is coming back after an impressive 2006 season in which she played 27 matches, finishing the season with 306 kills. She is the only volleyball player in CSU history to start in all 30 matches her freshman year.
The Rams open their season Friday against Oregon State in the first of three weekend matchups as part of the Asics Challenge in Honolulu, Hawaii.
The Barnes File
6′, Junior, Middle Blocker, Highlands Ranch, Colo.
-Lead CSU with 31 service aces last year
-5th player in CSU history to record 100 kills her first year
-Averaged 3.15 Kills per game in 2006 (second on the team)
-Ranked in top-10 in three MWC categories in 2006
-2006 Mountain West All-Conference
-2006 Mountain West All-Tournament
-2007 Preseason Mountain West All-Conference