Kimberlee Southwell, senior libero, Hyde Park
What do you remember most about your first organized volleyball team?
I was in fifth grade when I first started playing volleyball with my school team, Hyde Park. Four of the girls from that team are on my varsity team today. That experience sparked my interest in playing volleyball.
For people who might not know, what does a libero do in volleyball?
The libero is the defensive captain. This position is responsible for returning serves and digging hits by the opposing team. Most people just note the libero by the different (color) jersey, but the role of passing is huge to a team’s success. If you can’t pass, you are going to have a hard time putting the ball away.
Has volleyball taught you any lessons you apply in everyday life?
One of the skills that I have developed through volleyball is leadership. When I was young, I was pretty shy and not confident. Now I’m one of the team captains and comfortable pushing my team to achieve our goals.
Which of your high school courses will benefit you the most after you graduate?
All of my AP courses have helped prepare me for college, but English has been one of the most important since I have really learned to write in that class.
What are your college plans?
My plan is to attend Texas A&M next fall and work on a degree in business. I hope to play intramural or club volleyball.
If you could have dinner with any four people in the history of the world, who would they be?
First, I would love to have dinner with my two grandfathers who passed away. I would also want to have Kelly Clarkson and Jesus join us.
Why Kelly Clarkson?
As a kid, I grew up listening to her music. She was always so authentic and her voice is amazing.
Do you have any pre-match rituals?
Before matches, our team goes into the locker room and does cheers. We always do “Boom Chicka Boom,” “Funky Chicken” and “Down by the River.” They help us loosen up and get pumped for our game.
Outside of athletics, what do you like most about Hyde Park?
Hyde Park has been a home away from home since I was 3 years old. My favorite part about the school is the community and relationships that will last a lifetime.
Tell me something about yourself that most people don’t know.
I have always been intrigued by sailboats. Sailing on a crystal blue sea is on my bucket list.
If you could visit any place in the world, what would it be?
This summer I had the opportunity to travel to France, and now I want to explore even more of Europe, especially the gorgeous terrain of Switzerland and Austria.