Roxana's loss is a net gain for MacMurray
Taylor Westfall and Niah Bevolo were so good together as Roxana volleyball players that they decided to take their game on the road.
Both seniors have committed to MacMurray College to continue their athletic and academic careers.
Bevolo and Westfall were key components of a Roxana team that boasted a 23-13 record this season. Westfall holds the school record holder for most digs in a season and was named Volleyball Player of the Year in 2016 by Advantage News. Bevolo is the school's career assist leader.
The two high school stars will now try to help turn around a MacMurray team that struggled a bit last year.
Roxana coach Mike McKinney told the West Central Reporter that he believes the girls have what it takes to be successful at the next level.
“Dedication and commitment to volleyball and class work will definitely help them focus and inspire at the next level,” he said. “They have learned how to prioritize academics and athletics and incorporate it in to their daily life. Both are leaders on and off the court through not only words but also actions."
Bevolo was Roxana's vocal leader in practice and games. She kept the team efficient and focused and will look to do the same at MacMurray. Westfall is more of the quiet type -- McKinney referred to her as a "silent assassin" -- and her court smarts, awareness and hitting ability should serve her well at the next level as well.
"I think they are excited because they get the chance to not only play at next level but to also play with a familiar face,” McKinney said. “They have been good friends for as long as I can remember, and continuing their education and playing together will be extremely beneficial to both."
As for their academics, Westfall will be majoring in pharmacy and Bevolo will tackle biology. McKinney said he expects the girls to succeed in the classroom as well as the court.
"I see both being successful at whatever they choose to pursue," he said. "They are both hard-working young ladies who won't accept failure or giving up on something."