GoSophomore Sarah Florian has transferred from USC to the University of Minnesota to play volleyball for the Golden Gophers according to an announcement made by Minnesota Head Volleyball Coach Mike Hebert on Monday, Aug. 22.
Florian is a 6-0 sophomore outside hitter from Holland, Ohio. She is coming off a freshman season in which she was third on USC in digs per game at 2.63 (205) dpg, fifth in kills with 2.58 (201) kpg and tied for third in service aces in 27 matches. Florian was also named to the Pac-10 All-Freshman team with the Women of Troy.
This past season, Florian had some of her best matches against the top competition in the nation as a freshman. She hit a career-high .438 (16-2-32) with 16 kills and 10 digs against eventual National Champion Stanford on Oct. 8, 2004. Florian also had 12 kills and had career-highs in digs (19) and blocks (4) against 2004 Final Four participant Washington on Nov. 26. She tallied 16 kills and 15 digs against No. 1 Nebraska in a five- game NCAA Regional Final victory on Dec. 11, 2004. Florian also had 12 kills, 16 digs and a team-high three blocks in USC’s Final Four matchup with the Golden Gophers last year.
Florian was named to Volleyball Magazine’s Top 50 coming out of high school in 2003. She was also the No. 7 ranked high school senior in the nation in 2003 according to prepvolleyball.com. Florian helped lead St. Ursula Academy to a 106-7 record, four City League championships and four state semifinal appearances during her career. Her 2002 squad was ranked as high as No. 7 nationally. Florian was a four-time Northwest District Player of the Year, Toledo Blade City Player of the Year and Toledo City Player of the Year. She was also a four-time All-Ohio state first team selection, All-Northwest District and All-Toledo City League first team pick.
In 2003, Florian helped guide the U.S. Volleyball Youth National Team to a fourth-place finish at the 2003 World Championships and was named to the All-Tournament team at the 2003 Junior Olympics. She played with the U.S. Volleyball Youth National Team in 2002 and 2003. Florian also played with the Toledo Volleyball Club for nine years.
With Florian joining the program, Minnesota will have nine players on its roster this upcoming year that have been Volleyball Magazine Fab 50 players. Freshmen Rachel Hartmann (St. Charles, Ill.), Kyla Roehrig (Papillion, Neb.), Kelly Schmidt (Champaign, Ill.) and Katie Vatterrodt (Bloomington, Ill.) were all named to the list. Juniors Kelly Bowman (Maple Grove, Minn.) and Meredith Nelson (St. Croix Falls, Wis.) were also named to it coming out of high school, along with sophomore Jessy Jones (Naperville, Ill.). Florian joins Meghan Cumpston (Red Bluff, Calif.) as transfers who were on the list coming out of high school.
“Sarah is a great player and a great person,” said Hebert. “She is looking for a fresh start, and we are very fortunate that she sees Minnesota as a perfect fit for her. Sarah can do it all as an outside hitter. She has all the shots, and she can serve, pass and defend at a high level. Her versatility and ball control skills really set her apart from the rest.”