Chao Announces Inaugural Volleyball Recruiting Class
By ODU Athletics
NORFOLK, Va. – Old Dominion University volleyball coach Fred Chao announced his inaugural recruiting class on Thursday, adding seven student-athletes that will become members of the first volleyball team at ODU.
“The members of the incoming 2019 class are confident in who they are, have strong values and work ethic, and are looking for a meaningful challenge. These are the personal qualities upon which our program will be built,” Chao said. “Throughout the recruiting process, each of these young women demonstrated leadership and initiative and will establish a culture of excellence on and off the court. From a volleyball standpoint, I am excited to work with them for an entire year without the interruptions of a rigorous season, which can often deprioritize the learning process during the fall.”
Madeline Rudd – Outside Hitter – 6-1 – Apex, N.C./Apex
Had 249 kills in 68 sets as a senior at Apex … Had a .336 hitting percentage … A team captain, helped Apex to a 16-5 record … A four-year starter, Rudd was a two-time firs-team all-conference, and all-region selection at Apex … She was named to the Under Armour All-American Watch list as a junior and senior … Recorded 916 kills and 474 digs in her career … Named to the all-academic four-straight years … Played Club for Triangle Volleyball … Helped her club team to fifth at the Girl’s Junior National Championships and was named to the all-tournament team … Named Prepvolleyball Star Search Best of the Southeast.
Chao on Rudd: “Madeline has great ball control and is a level-headed competitor.”
Ashley Peroe – Outside Hitter/Right Side – 6-1 – Virginia Beach, Va./Kellam
Helped lead Kellam to a region championship as a junior and third place finish in the state tournament … Played for Beach Elite Club Team since 2013 … Named MVP of Under 16 Capitol Hill Tournament … Member of West Coast AAU Junior Olympics in 2016 … Member of National Honor Society … Participated in USA Volleyball Junior National’s three times and twice at AAU Nationals.
Chao on Peroe: “Ashley has a solid all-around game that has been developed both indoors and on the beach.”
Hallie Thorn – Right Side – 6-4 – Plano, Texas/Prestonwood Christian Academy
Led Prestonwood to a 34-6 record and state championship as a senior … Helped Prestonwood to a second-place finish as a junior … Played club for Dallas Arsenal and helped the squad to a first-place finish in the 2017 USA Volleyball Girls Junior National Championship and won the North Texas Invitational in 2019 … The team finished the season ranked No. 20 in the nation … Helped team to a third-place finish at Puerto Rico Nationals.
Chao on Thorn: “Hallie is a physical lefty who will give us a strong net presence.”
Aleksandra Grigoreva – Setter – 6-2 – Moscow, Russia/FIU
Led FIU with 430 assists...Played in 19 matches, started 16...Tallied 44 points, 16 kills...Second on the team with 19 service aces ...Fourth on the team with 138 digs...Also had 18 block assists … Three-time Moscow Champion and two-time Russian National champion … Named MVP of the Moscow Championship in 2013.
Chao on Grigoreva: “Sasha’ is an experienced Division I setter who will bring international experience and confidence to a young squad.”
Sarah Shanton – Outside Hitter/Right Side – 6-1 – Forest, Va./Jefferson Forest
Led her team with 376 kills, 189 digs and 52 aces as a senior … Earned second-team All-State, first-team All-Region and was named Seminole District Player of the Year as a senior … A two-time first-team All-District honoree, Shanton helped Jefferson Forest to three state playoff appearances … She played club for Lynchburg Volleyball Academy, Heart of Virginia, Next Revolution Volleyball and Beach South … Was also a goalkeeper on the Olympic Development Program (ODP) women’s soccer team.
Chao on Shanton: “Sarah is a versatile player with a strong work ethic and ability to attack from any position.”
Olivia De Jesus – Middle Hitter – 6-0 – West Hempstead, N.Y./Sacred Heart Academy
Named Championship MVP after leading Sacred Heart to its first volleyball state championship in 10 years … Led the Long Island CHSAA in kills and blocks … Played club at Academy Volleyball … Helped her club team win the Garden Empire Volleyball Association (GEVA) Regional Championship and earn a bid to nationals … Helped squad to a third-place finish at the Capitol Hill Classic.
Chao on on De Jesus: “Olivia is relatively new to the game but already demonstrates high level volleyball skill and understanding.”
Anna Burkhardt – Libero – 5-8 – Fort Wayne, Ind./Bishop Dwenger
A two-time Indiana All-State honoree, earned second-team as a junior and first-team accolades as a senior … Two-time first-team all-conference and all-region honors … Named Academic-All-State as a senior … Played club for Impact Volleyball … Helped them to a pair of fifth place finishes in 2015 and 2017.
Chao on Burkhardt: “Anna is highly skilled in all areas but will focus on libero. She plays with the confidence earned from competing at high levels in both club and high school.”