Beth White is set to become the first player from Scarborough to play national league volleyball for Whitby-based side North Riding Eagles.
The Scarborough-based player started training with the club when she was 17 and in less than a year has made rapid progress, and now looks set to make her debut in Saturday’s National Volleyball League (NVL) clash against Derby.
White discovered volleyball at the Community volleyball sessions at Hull University Scarborough Campus on a Tuesday night.
She has also travelled along the coast with North Riding Eagles training and playing in beach volleyball tournaments in Bridlington, Saltburn, Scarborough and Whitby.
Head coach Anthony Laffan said: “Beth, along with other local players, has doubled her weekly training commitment.
“In what is a difficult transition year for our ladies national league team our club players have rallied to the cause of saving our Division Two status by working hard to help boost the ladies squad.
“Beth typifies our tradition of developing local players and will join our national league squad as a specialised blocker.”
The teenager said: “I can’t believe I’ve been given the opportunity. I love volleyball, I love my club, I hope to help them start winning again.
“I am nervous, but so happy that my friends and family will be cheering me and the team on this Saturday.”
Derby were facing relegation last season when the Midlands side were rescued by the local university, who flexed their financial muscle to bring in GB London 2012 Olympic players and coaches. If they continue in the vein of form that they finished last season in then promotion could be on the cards this year.
Laffan is not panicking about not having a win so far this season.
He added:“So far this season all our players have been upbeat and given 100%. When Beth makes her debut we will have four players on court who had never played NVL until this season.
“They are all facing a baptism of fire at this high level and I am impressed with how they are coping.
“If we get a win before Christmas it will be a bonus but after that, when these new players have bedded in, we will get the wins we need to stay up.”