Junior libero Danielle Waedekin has been a welcome addition to the backline of the Tritons volleyball team. Already a two-time Great Lakes Valley Conference Defensive Player of the Week selection, Waedekin, a nursing major, ranks fourth in the conference with 5.17 digs per set.
What brought you to UMSL to play volleyball?
I chose to play volleyball at UMSL because I wanted to play for a school with a great program, while I obtained my nursing degree. St. Louis is my hometown, so this was also a plus! I am so happy to be playing with such a great group of girls!
When and how did you get started playing volleyball?
I started playing volleyball in third grade. I was very athletic as a kid and enjoyed playing every sport because I loved competing and working together on a team.
What do you enjoy most about being the libero?
My absolute favorite thing about being libero is digging a ball that no one expects me to get. It’s so fun to sacrifice my body and do whatever it takes to get a ball up. There is no better feeling.
You are a nursing major. Why do you want to be a nurse? And what kind of nurse do you want to be?
I want to be a nurse to help and influence the lives of people in need. It will be rewarding knowing my input, whether it is big or small, will have an impact on the ones that need my care. In return, I will also get the reward of knowing I helped someone. I want to be a pediatric or reproductive nurse because I love working with kids and families.
How do you balance academics and athletics?
I balance academics and athletics by planning my weeks ahead of time. Between volleyball and school, my schedule can get very hectic. Without my planner, I don’t know what I would do!
If you are not playing volleyball (or studying), what do you enjoy doing?
I enjoy making visits to the animal shelter and zoo. I am a huge animal lover. I also love cooking, baking, hiking, and spending time with my loved ones.
Any pre-game rituals or superstitions?
Before every game, I give myself a pep talk. I talk out loud to myself and repeat my goals for the game and the type of the player I want to look and feel like on the court. These pep talks can get pretty intense! I also have other rituals, such as, tying my shoes a certain way and chewing gum.
What are your personal and team goals for the remainder of the season?
For the remainder of the season, I want us to play as a team and give it everything we have with no excuses. No matter the outcome, I never want to walk away from a match feeling like there was more we had left to give. A personal goal of mine is to lead the conference in digs.