What's in a name? Shakespeare said "a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." But could the name "Sunny" be anything but that?
The Bishop Carroll Catholic Lady Huskies volleyball team has inspired unprecedented student-section support this fall, thanks in large part due to senior, Sunny Settle. Appropriately, Sunny is a three-year starter at setter, a position that requires the utmost in unselfishness, which is exactly what head coach Joe Skura sees in her.
"Sunny is so humble," he said. "She has grown so much over the last four years as a player, but also as a person. She is selfless, caring, hard-working, and dedicated to the sport of volleyball and her teammates."
Settle recently notched her 1,000th career assist, a tremendous achievement not only for an individual player, but for her team.
"It feels really good to achieve something so awesome," Settle said, "but I couldn't do it without my hitters and passers on the court. It's an accomplishment for our program because we did it as one."
Beyond the leadership she provides to her own team, Settle has worked with 7th and 8th graders in the Altoona Parochial League, teaching them the basics of volleyball as well as a love of the sport.
Settle has also helped to inspire a rowdy student section, like you might expect for a states-bound basketball squad.
"The atmosphere this year is awesome," she said. "Every game, the crowd goes crazy and it makes us feel good, but they also pull us up when we need it, and we really appreciate them."
With a 13-2 record, including their first-ever win over rival Penn Cambria, the Lady Huskies are poised for a run at the conference championship and additional post-season success. But with the playoffs approaching, the reality of the end of the season is bittersweet for Settle.
"I feel pressure and excitement," she says, "but also sadness because it's all coming to an end."
Like Settle, the Bishop Carroll volleyball program has grown throughout the last few years, and the legacy that she and her teammates leave behind will be a lasting one, not only for the continued success of the volleyball program, but also in their own future endeavors.
"It won't be the games or record that we remember, but the memories we made as a team," she says.
"Coach Skura makes us think about how volleyball affects our life. Bishop Carroll volleyball is not about winning, but about what you can do for others and the team as a whole."
Skura says, "That speaks for the tremendous young lady Sunny has become in the last four years, with a drive and commitment to her teammates and the game of volleyball."
Settle's future hopes include studying nursing and playing volleyball at Mt. Aloysius College.
So what's in a name? For Sunny Settle, it's a perfect description of her character on and off the volleyball court: positive, inspiring, generous and selfless.
Kellie Goodman Shaffer can be reached at Kellie@BedfordCountyChamber.org. Her column appears on Tuesdays.