(Editor’s note: Washington State athletics release)
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Washington State’s Taylor Mims and Alexis Dirige are two of 12 players chosen for the U.S. Women’s Collegiate National Volleyball Team – Europe Tour (CNT-Europe) elite roster competing this summer, USA Volleyball announced Thursday.
Mims, a rising senior, and Dirige, a rising junior, will train and compete July 4-15 on the CNT-Europe squad, one of three teams within the U.S. Collegiate National Team program. The CNT-Europe team will compete in the 14th Annual European Global Challenge, July 10-13, in Pula, Croatia, after training and friendly matches in Europe.
Cougar players Casey Schoenlein and McKenna Woodford and Head Coach Jen Greeny were on the 2016 CNT-Europe team that became the first U.S. Collegiate team to win the Global Challenge Tournament in Pula, Croatia, in its then 12-year history. Mims was a member of the 2017 CNT-Europe team that won gold at the 13th Annual Global Challenge Tournament and she was selected to the prestigious all-tournament team.
Taylor Mims is a 6-3 opposite hitter from Billings, Mont., who was a 2017 All-Pac-12 First Team selection after being a 2016 Pac-12 Honorable Mention honoree as a middle blocker. Mims was also named to the 2017 and 2016 PrepVolleyball.com All-America Honorable Mention and the VolleyballMag.com All-America Honorable Mention Teams. She was a team co-captain and the Cougars statistical leader, leading WSU to its second consecutive NCAA Championship Tournament Second Round appearance. Mims’ 4.17 kills per set and 4.75 points per set, both sixth-best in Pac-12, are 30th and 26th, respectively, in NCAA. She had 28 kills and 79 attacks in the 3-1 win NCAA First Round win over Florida State to lead all players in the 2017 NCAA tournament. In that same match Mims also had a career-high 22 digs and 31.5 points. Her 599 points in 2017 was 12th-best in the NCAA. During the Pac-12 season, Mims’ 4.38 kills per set and 4.95 points per set were both are second-best in conference.
— USA Volleyball (@usavolleyball) March 29, 2018
Her statistics from the 2017 season and their rankings in WSU all-time include 525 kills (3rd), 1533 attack attempts (1st), 4.17 kps (7th), 599.0 points (2nd), and 4.75 pps (4th). In WSU career rankings Mims has 899 kills (23rd), 2410 attacks (19th), 2.63 kps (26th), .120 hitting percentage (19th), 49 solo blocks (t-10th), 327 block assists (10th), 376 total blocks (t-9th), 1.10 bps (14th), and 1161.5 points (6th). In the summer of 2017 Mims won a Gold medal and named to All-Tournament team at CNT-Europe team at 13th Annual Global Challenge in Croatia
Alexis Dirige is a 5-2 sophomore libero from San Francisco. Her 36 digs in WSU’s 3-1 win at Howard University is the WSU record for most digs in a four-set match. She had 37 digs in 3-2 win over No. 13 UCLA which is the second-highest digs total in a match in WSU all-time and second for digs in a five-set match. Dirige’s 37 digs was also the most digs in a Pac-12 match in 2017. She averaged 4.52 digs per set which was third-best in Pac-12 standings and in just Pac-12 matches she had a 4.65 digs per set average, also third-best. Her 569 digs in the 2017 season is the WSU record for most digs in a single season and 40th-best in NCAA. Dirige reached double-digit digs in 27 out of 34 matches and had 20 or more digs in 13 matches. She was the 11th player in WSU history to reach 1,000 digs and did it the fastest of all players in just 246 sets. Her 1,055 digs is 11th in WSU career record and her 4.16 digs per set average is third-best in WSU history. She was named to the 2017 Pac-12 All-Academic Honorable Mention Team.
University of Louisville Head Coach Dani Busboom Kelly will serve as the CNT-Europe head coach and will be assisted by California Baptist Head Coach Branden Higa and DePaul University Head Coach Marie Zidek.
2018 U.S. Collegiate National Team – Europe Tour
Name (Position, School, 2018 College Eligibility Year, Height, Hometown)
Alexis Dirige (L, Washington State University, 5-2, Junior, San Francisco, Calif.)
Leah Edmond (OH, University of Kentucky, 6-2, Junior, Lexington, Ky.)
Audriana Fitzmorris (OPP, Stanford University, 6-6, Senior, Overland Park, Kan.)
Amanda Green (OH, University of Louisville, 6-1, Junior, Skokie, Ill.)
Danielle Hart (M, University of Wisconsin, 6-4, Freshman, Virginia Beach, Va.)
Kirstie Hillyer (M, Colorado State University, 6-6, Junior, Bayfield, Colo.)
MacKenzie May (OH, UCLA, 6-3, Sophomore, Dubuque, Iowa)
Taylor Mims (OPP, Washington State University, 6-3, Senior, Billings, Mont.)
Berkeley Oblad (M, University of Utah, 6-4, Senior, Henderson, Nev.)
Katie Oleksak (S, Colorado State University, 5-10, Junior, Phoenix, Ariz.)
August Raskie (S, Oregon, 6-0, Senior, Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Avery Skinner (OH, University of Kentucky, 6-1, Sophomore, Katy, Texas)