Oct. 1, 2012
Lindsey Lawmaster is a freshman hailing from Los Alamitos, Calif. The 5-foot, 5-inch freshman may be one of the smallest members of the Gopher volleyball team, but with one of the biggest personalities. Playing in every set during her freshman season, Lawmaster has a team-high 141 digs, while posting 13 aces. Here's a question/answer with the rookie.
Q: What has been the hardest adjustment moving to Minnesota from California, and what has been the easiest?
A: I think the hardest adjustment has been being away from my family. I have been away from them for volleyball camps and tournaments, but nothing where it is months without seeing them. I definitely miss them a lot more than when I lived with them all the time. My parents have already surprised me and visited during the Diet Coke Classic. My step-dad came to my apartment door and surprised me and then my mom came later that night and I had no idea either of them were coming. Plus my step-dad and my little brother are coming this weekend, so it is always really great to see them. The easiest part I would say has been maneuvering my way around campus and familiarizing myself with locations. That has been pretty easy andI am not constantly lost. I have not been one of those freshmen who have to walk around with a map to see where they are going.
Q: What did your recruitment process look like? Why did you end up choosing to play at Minnesota?
A: I was just deciding between a couple schools and it was coming down to the bottom line. I really enjoyed the fact that Hugh was coming, the Olympic coach was actually going to be my college coach so I couldn't pass that up. I had two schools in California and two Big Ten schools. But I thought this is college, I can go home whenever I want so I decided to try something different and come to Minnesota.
Q: You are known on the team for having a very big personality, where does that come from, where do you get all of your energy?
A: I have no idea! Genetics? Everyone is like "you are on the volleyball team? You are really small!" I say "yes I know I am tiny, but you do not have to be six feet to play!" I think I have just been an energetic kid, I have always had so much energy. With playing volleyball my mom would always tell me to have energy, which is one of the best things you can bring to a team. So I have always been "boing boing boing"- just very energetic, it is just my style.
Q: Being the starting libero as a freshman is an accomplishment. Where do you owe all your passing success? What past experience playing really helped you learn all of your skill?
A: I would say it has been really tough coaches. I have never really had a sweetheart really kick-back type of coach. I have always had someone right down my throat, telling me "you are doing this wrong, this is what you need to do to fix it." They have been the type to be really straight forward telling me what I need to do and what I should not do. I just really took it in and got some tough skin and listened to what I had to do and I ended up coming out and battling. I definitely think past coaches have prepared me to be the passer that I am today.
Q: When serving, you stand on the very far left side of the court, line officials even have to move. How did that become your serving position?
A: I used to serve from the right. I was always really comfortable serving from the right, but serving from there you have to travel a long distance to get to left back which is where I play. One of my past coaches Walt Kerr advised me to serve from left back so I can get to my position easier. The more distance you create from the end line with how far you stand back can give you more room for error. I never really felt comfortable serving in the middle, there is too much space; I just end up seeing too much. Standing in the corner, I can go whatever way I want.
Q: What has been so far your favorite part about playing in the Sports Pavilion for home games as a Minnesota athlete?
A: The amount of people that come to the games have been crazy. At my high school we had a big student section and a lot of people, so coming here and having the community fill just thousands of seats in the pavilion has been amazing. It is so loud in there when everyone yells the "Point U" and sings the rouser. It is so cool and awesome, I just love the atmosphere in the Pav.
Q: What are the main differences in your opinion between playing in high school and playing in college?
A: Speed and competiveness. It is just a whole different game. My coach Laura asked me what I thought it would be and I never thought it would be anything like it is. It is not even comparable. It is so different and it is so competitive. You are always on the road and always have to keep a play by play mentality. You were always supposed to have that, but with college it just goes by so fast because games are so quick. You really have to be able to let everything go very easily if anything is wrong because you have to play point by point. This summer definitely helped prepare me because I would have the huge hitters like Tori, Ashley, and Katherine slamming the ball down at me. It became a better transition for me coming in from the summer because I could already get a couple balls up from them and they are some of the best hitters in the conference.
Gophers in the Pros: Erica Handley
Gophersports.com caught up with its most recent professional athlete, Erica Handley.
Travel Blog: Gopher Volleyball in Hawaii
Follow the Gophers as they are training in Hawaii for the 2017 spring break.
Gophers Open Spring Season vs. Hawaii
Minnesota won a four-set decision over Hawaii, March 16, in Honolulu to open the spring scrimmage.