Assumption High (Louisville, Ky.) setter Alexa Filley was today named the 2013-14 Gatorade National Volleyball of the Year. The 5-foot-9 senior led the Rockets to a 36-6 record, the state championship and a No. 6 national ranking by PrepVolleyball.com this past season. Filley recorded 1,248 assists for an average of more than 11 per game and compiled a hitting percentage of .489 en route to 102 kills. Named MVP of the state tournament in each of the past two seasons, led Assumption to four straight state titles and has signed with Auburn.
We sat down with Filley to better understand how he outshined more than 420,000 high school volleyball players nationwide to win the award.
Q: This team struggled to gel, then you won your last 17 to four-peat. How did you, the quarterback, get everyone on the same page?
A: We had to have a really hard discussion. Coach didn’t even get involved. It was uncomfortable. It was about coming together and getting everyone in sync. We came out the other side great.
Q: One of your favorite movies is Dodgeball. How would you make it work if the Ben Stiller character from that film, White Goodman, joined this year’s Assumption team?
A: I think we’d have to knock him down a few levels to make sure he could play as a member of the team.
Q: Your role model is Kerri Walsh Jennings, who won this award, and her new beach partner April Ross, who also won this award, just handed you the same trophy. How do you get your head around that?
A: I still haven’t. I’m just so honored to even be considered among the best players in the country, let along win this.
Q: Is your Pinterest obsession as bad as they say and how does it manifest itself?
A: Yes. Whenever I have a moment, I will whip out my phone and check it or whip out my Kindle and start reading. Right now I’m reading ‘Divergent.’
Q: We hear you’re afraid of sharks. Would you swim near one if it guaranteed an NCAA title?
A: Yes. I would I go as close as I needed to go if it meant winning an NCAA title.
Q: Will you be able to feed you sushi addiction safely in Auburn, AL?
A: I’m a little worried about that. First of all, one of my future teammates doesn’t like sushi at all. And second, I don’t trust many sushi places.
Q: Which of your common nicknames—Lex or Minnie—do you think your future Auburn teammates will go with?
A: Hopefully, Lex. I think I’ve outgrown the ‘Minnie’ nickname, which coach (Ron) Kordes gave me as a freshman because I was so quiet. I think I’m louder now.
Q: Why do you like volunteering with a local first grade class so much?
A: I just love hanging out with kids and listening to all the silly things they say. I babysit for my cousin and I just love it.
Q: Apparently you’re quite the cook and baker. If you were having the Gatorade team over for dinner tonight, what’s on the menu?
A: Pasta. I like chicken, so maybe a pasta with chicken. For dessert? I would get my teammate (senior middle blocker) Lauren Tutwiler’s recipe for chocolate chip cookies and help her make those.