Ciera Reyes’ track career at Nixa was short-lived. Her final year in the sport was when she was in the eighth grade four years ago, perhaps because she competed in the shot put and not the high jump.
Reyes’ strength is actually her vertical jump, which played out well during her volleyball career for the Lady Eagles. She’s counting on her leaping ability to help her stay at outside hitter for her college career at Evangel.
At 5-foot-8, Reyes is confident she can play at the net for the Lady Crusaders.
“I’m a little short, maybe,” Reyes said. “But I have a good vertical and I think in the NAIA I can play there. You’ve got to take advantage of your vertical when you’re a little shorter. I’m working on that all the time.”
Reyes received honorable mention recognition on the All-COC Team last fall. One of her best matches came in Nixa’s Class 5 District 11 semifinal win over Kickapoo. She led the Lady Eagles with 12 kills.
Reyes shined as a senior leader while playing with an assortment of underclassmen.
“My senior year was definitely my favorite year,” she said. “I was kind of the mom on the team. That’s what they called me. Everyone was super close on the team. We clicked right away, even with having different age groups.”
Reyes will join an Evangel roster that includes fellow Nixa grad Makayla Stephen, a defensive specialist. The Lady Crusaders were 18–18 last season.
“I’ve gone to open gyms, so I’ve already gotten (to play) with the team,” Reyes said. “I’ve wanted to play college volleyball since I was a freshman and I went to Evangel camps when I was younger, so it’s funny it worked out the way it did.”