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Sarasota Thursday, Oct. 3, 2019 1 month ago

Sarasota Athlete of the Week: Ashtyn O'Shea

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The senior talks Southeastern University and the setter position.
by: Ryan Kohn Sports Reporter

Ashtyn O'Shea is a senior volleyball player at Sarasota Christian. O'Shea, a Southeastern University commit, had 24 assists, five kills and two aces Sept. 26 in the Blazers' 3-0 road win against Palmetto High.

When did you start playing volleyball?

I started playing when I was 11. It was actually my sister (Jeslyn O'Shea). She played it before me, and I loved it and thought, 'Ooh, I want to do that.' Ever since then, I have loved it. 

What is the appeal to you?

Mainly the competitiveness. The thrill of getting into the game and playing your heart out. 

What is your best skill?

I would say setting. I have worked at it all my life. I have always been a setter. 

Why do you like setting?

People call that position the quarterback of the team. You basically run the court. You tell your hitters what plays you are going to run. You talk to your libero and passers like, 'Alright, guys, let's do this and this.' You watch for everything. If a tip comes over, you call it out. 

What is your favorite memory?

Before our district tournament last year, we had a talk with our coach and our athletics director and everyone. The theme was the Parable of the Mustard Seed. They said we needed to be like the mustard seed. It really hit me in the heart and has stuck with me. Then we went and won our match (against Imagine School at North Port). 

What has been your biggest challenge?

When I am in the game, keeping a good mindset. Remember that you are playing for your teammates and not yourself. Make sure you help everyone do their part better. Don't worry about you so much. 

Why did you sign with Southeastern University?

Ever since eighth grade, when I first stepped on that campus, I have loved it. I felt God was there with me. I felt like it was home away from home, as people say. I also felt comfortable with the coaching staff and the players there. 

What is your favorite food?

Macaroni and cheese. I am a big fan. 

What is your favorite TV show?

"The Office," hands down.

What is your favorite subject?

Math. Even though it gets hard, you still want to strive to do your best. It's like volleyball in that way for me. 

What is the best piece of advice you have received?

Play for your team and for God over yourself. Focus on everyone else. Help them get better. 

Finish this sentence: Ashtyn O'Shea is …

… A kind and helpful person. 

I’m the sports reporter for Sarasota and East County and a Missouri School of Journalism graduate. I was born and raised in Olney, MD. My biggest inspirations are Wright Thompson and Alex Ovechkin. My strongest belief is that mint chip ice cream is unbeatable.

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