By Rob Kiser
Piqua Daily Call
SIDNEY — Two Lehman Catholic seniors made their college choices official on signing day Wednesday in the Lehman Media Center.
• Olivia Lucia
Lucia, the daughter of Rhonda Elders and Andrew Lucia, will play Division I volleyball for the University of Tennessee-Martin.
The 5-foot-11 middle had 260 kills and 108 blocks for Lehman this season and is a two-time All-Ohio selection.
“It (Tennessee-Martin) just kind of had that home feeling,” Lucia said. “It just felt right. Playing Division I was always a goal. I considered a lot of D-II schools, because I wasn’t sure of the commitment I wanted to make. But, after visiting and talking to the coaches, Tennessee-Martin just felt like home.”
Lucia hopes to make an instant impact.
“They graduated a lot of players and told me they wanted me to come in and start for them,” Lucia said. “I have always loved playing volleyball. I play year round because I play for Lehman and I play club volleyball. I am excited about the opportunity.”
Lehman coach Caroline Dammeyer said it is a good fit.
“I think it is a really good choice for Olivia (Lucia),” she said. “She is a good player, who works really hard. She has a lot of potential. And she knows several players on the team, including my niece Addy Vaughn (St. Henry), who she will be playing club volleyball with this year.”
Dammeyer said it is also a plus for the Lehman program to have a D-I signee.
“Especially for the younger girls in the program,” Dammeyer said. “Oliva (Lucia) is a great role model for them, because she works so hard.”
• Ava Behr
Behr signed with D-II Fairmont State after being a big part of the Lehman offense as the Cavaliers won three straight district titles and advanced to the regional finals her junior year.
The daughter of Kevin and Nikki Behr had seven goals and 13 assists this season and finished her career with 30 goals and 32 assists.
“I just loved it when I visited there,” Behr said about Fairmont State. “I loved my teammates, the coaches there. I loved the atmosphere on the campus and everything about it.”
Behr couldn’t have imagined not playing soccer in college.
“I have been playing club soccer at Dayton and Cincinnati with a lot of good players,” she said. “I think that has (helped prepare her for college soccer). I think I can (make an impact as a freshman).”
Lehman Catholic coach Jeremy Lorenzo agreed.
“Ava (Behr) has played club soccer at a really high level in Dayton and Cincinnati in the off-season,” Lorenzo said. “That is what has made Ava the player she is for Lehman and will allow her to go to the next level for Fairmont State. I think it is a really good fit for her. She is a great kid and I am really happy for her.”
Contact Piqua Daily Call Sports Editor Rob Kiser firstname.lastname@example.org
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