West Aurora (Aurora, Ill.) senior Lauren Carlini was named the 2012-13 Gatorade National Volleyball Player of the Year Tuesday morning. April Ross, a beach volleyball silver medalist at the 2012 Summer Olympics and Gatorade’s 1999-2000 National Player of the Year, delivered the news in a surprise visit to West Aurora.
Carlini, a 6-foot-1 senior setter/right-side hitter, recorded 333 kills, 303 assists, 156 digs, 92 aces and 50 blocks this fall, leading the Blackhawks to a 32-6 record. Carlini also compiled a hitting percentage of .462 and a kill percentage of .594.
A Wisconsin recruit, Carlini is rated the nation’s No. 1 recruit in the Class of 2013 by PrepVolleyball.com. Carlini is now a finalist for the Gatorade Female High School Athlete of the Year award.
“Lauren Carlini is the ultimate physical setter,” said John Tawa, publisher of PrepVolleyball.com. “She is one of the most competitive, hate-to-lose players I have ever seen.”
This past summer, Carlini led the U.S. Girls Youth National Team to a gold medal at the 2011 USA Volleyball High Performance Championships, earning MVP honors in the process. She also started for Team USA at that summer’s FIVB Girls Youth World Championships in Turkey.
Carlini has maintained a 3.73 GPA. She has volunteered on behalf of the Geneva Police Department and the Illinois Math and Science Academy. She is also a youth volleyball coach.