Johnson County's Boney looks to continue volleyball career at E&H

By Matt Hill
STAR STAFF
mhill@starhq.com

   MOUNTAIN CITY--After leading the Johnson County Lady Longhorn volleyball team to greater heights in 2002, it looks like Rebecca Boney will be playing the sport at a higher level next fall.
   Boney will most likely be playing college volleyball for nearby Emory & Henry after her graduation this spring.
   "I'm planning on attending Emory & Henry in the fall, and hopefully playing volleyball for them," she said. "I plan to go on an overnight visit to stay with the team, and get to know them better. I've already met with the coach once, and spent a little bit of time with the girls. But this will give me a chance to really get to know them and decide if I really want to be a part of their team. Right now I would absolutely love to. Volleyball is such a big part of my life. "
   Emory & Henry not only liked Boney's playing skills, but also her leadership abilities. This helped the Lady Wasps decide that they wanted to have Boney on the team.
   "They were looking for another defensive specialist to come, and add a little spunk to the team," Boney said. "I'm a very talkative, outgoing player. She thought I would fit in really well."
   Boney also likes that Emory & Henry is a small college, so it won't be a big change for her coming out of a close-knit town like Mountain City.
   "I love Emory & Henry," she said. "The campus is beautiful. It's just a very friendly environment. Everybody there is just so nice and so welcoming. I just really felt good there."
   Though she is not 100 percent sure she will be playing volleyball there, Boney is very close to certain that she will be in a Lady Wasp uniform next season.
   "I am going for the academics no matter what," Boney said. "And most likely unless something drastic happens, I will definitely be playing volleyball there."
   Boney enters the Southwest Virginia school with lofty credentials. In addition to being near the top of her senior class academically, she was named the Defensive Player-of-the-Year in the Watauga Conference and was also voted All-Northeast Tennessee by the area sports writers.
   "I feel wonderful about that," she said. It was such an odd thing coming into my senior year, and I hadn't really gotten any recognition the three years before. I came into my senior year, and I felt like I gave it everything I had. I've gotten so much stuff through the conference, I was named Defensive-Player-of-the-Year, and I was the MVP of my team. And then getting (All-NET), I was just amazed. I was like, it can't get any better than this. You couldn't stop me from smiling. I was so happy."
   Overall, Boney hopes that she can make the impact at Emory & Henry that she had at Johnson County High School.
   "Hopefully, I'll have a good one," Boney said about the kind of impact she will have at the school. "It's strange for me playing here, because we're such a short team in height, so a lot of our playing, it was mainly defense.
   "We didn't have a lot of height with the ball, and we couldn't hit very solid. We did such a good job with the little height that we had, and going up against those 5-9 girls, I'm like 'if I could only get like you.' So just being able to play at that level, I can't wait.