Lake Dallas junior Megan Turner was initially nervous about the opportunity to train where the nation’s Olympians train.
But after a tryout in Grand Prairie and a trip to Lake Placid, New York, Turner was sold.
Turner earned a spot at Under Armour’s Volleyball Factory, where she was able to train with former college coaches and play against competition from around the nation.
Turner returned last week from her four-day stint at the U.S. Olympic Training Center’s 29-acre facility and cherished the opportunity to train at a place where the Olympics were held twice.
“Driving into Lake Placid, it’s gorgeous,” Turner said. “Seeing the Olympic Center and being able to stay there, it was an amazing experience. I’ll never get to experience that again. It was amazing. I loved it, every second.”
After Lake Dallas coach Heather Van Noy told her middle blocker that she nominated Turner to participate in the program, Turner wasn’t fully interested. But Turner shined in the tryout at Grand Prairie and earned a trip to the clinic run by Kristee Porter, a former All-America player at UCLA.
Porter emailed Van Noy and asked for recommendations in different age ranges to send to the tryouts, and Van Noy nominated Turner, who played outside hitter for the Lady Falcons last season and was an All-District 5-4A honorable mention selection.
After Turner paid for the tryout and the trip to Lake Placid, Under Armour footed the rest of the bill for the week. Van Noy said it was good for Turner to leave the area, compete against other girls from around the nation and see how she will be treated when she plays at the collegiate level.
On top of all of that, Van Noy said Turner’s trip to Lake Placid also helped promote Lake Dallas.
“That’s huge for our program,” Van Noy said. “I know Megan, and I know she represented us well. We’re a small school surrounded by a lot of big schools. Sometimes we get pushed under the rug a little bit, so I think this really helps get our name out there.”
Van Noy said Turner’s junior year will be one where college coaches will be looking at her, who according to Van Noy has an incredible vertical leap and an equally incredible work ethic. Now that she’s back home, Turner said she’s ready to take what she learned in Lake Placid and implement it at Lake Dallas.
“I’m pumped,” Turner said. “I’m ready for this season.”
BEN BABY can be reached at 940-566-6869 and via Twitter at @Ben_Baby.