Less than a week after her senior season of high school volleyball ended with an appearance in the Division II state championship match, Highland’s Raina Terry officially announced her college plans by signing a letter of intent to play for the University of Illinois.
Terry had always planned to play for a Big 10 school, but her destination changed over the course of time. She started out looking at Illinois, Indiana and Purdue as her top schools and then narrowed it down to Illinois and Indiana.
“I originally chose Indiana because of their campus, but they had a coaching switch and it wasn’t the right fit for me anymore,” she said.
For Terry, volleyball has been a part of her life since she was very young.
“I started playing when I was four,” she said. “My mom and sister showed me how to play in our yard and I loved it.”
She would start playing on club teams when in fifth grade and then followed her sister Kam, also a Scot standout in the sport, through the ranks at Highland.
“I always told myself since my freshman year that I’d take one of her records off the book,” said Raina of Kam.
That was one of the few things she wasn’t able to accomplish as a Scot, as she finished barely behind her sister in career kills — despite being in the top 20 in the state in that stat.
However, being able to play at a major Division I school after a career that saw her named the KMAC Player of the Year three times and an All-Ohioan three times, while winning four league titles and being part of the second class in school history with 100 match wins was more than enough to make that chapter of her life a success.
“It’s unread,” she said. “Since the recruiting process started, I couldn’t picture myself here.”
Terry plans to major in anthropology with a minor in forensics, while likely redshirting as a freshman to get acclimated to college volleyball.
“We’ve talked about redshirting,” she said. “Coach wants to use all my eligibility. They told me before to be more aggressive and also to work on passing.”
If she has any regrets, it’ll simply be leaving Highland — a school district where she’s gained a lot of memories over her life.
“There are a lot of things I can take away,” she said. “So many memories. I love this school more than anything.”
However, she’s also looking forward to the challenges presented by collegiate volleyball.
“I’m looking forward to everything,” she said. “The higher level of play is something to look forward to. It’ll be very exciting.”
Rob Hamilton can be reached at 419-946-3010, ext. 1807. Connect with him on Twitter at @SportsMCS