Volleyball star Jenn Waddill on the rise at City College

Travis Noe and Travis Noe

One word comes to mind when seeing this 6-foot-1-inch freshman play volleyball: domination.

Eighteen-year-old Jennifer Waddill has led the women’s volleyball team to a 12-game win streak-a school record. Starting out the year with a 13-2 record, City College is now ranked among the top teams in the state.

Waddill is no stranger to the game of volleyball. Her older brother led San Marcos to the state championship in high school, and her dad competed as a Gaucho on the UCSB men’s volleyball team.

“I’ve always had volleyball in my family,” Waddill said. “My dad’s always been a great coach to me, and my brother has always encouraged me and helped me become a better player.”

Coming into her freshmen year at City College, Waddill trained all summer with a personal trainer to improve her game. Head coach Ed Gover thinks her hard work in the off-season paid off tremendously.

The Santa Barbara native has been consistently racking up kills in the double digits all season long. In a match against state-ranked opponent College of the Canyons in September, Waddill lead the Vaqs with 15 kills in the 3-2 win.

Waddill leads the WSC in hitting percentage at .531 — .2 better than the next player — and has an astounding 160 kills on the season.

“She is a solid player at the net in both hitting and blocking,” Gover said. “Not only has she put up impressive numbers, but her play has opened up opportunities for our other players.”

The 18-year old had an impressive high school career at San Marcos, where she teamed up with Maria Mayer to lead the Royals to two state championship appearances. Mayer and Waddill show the same chemistry on the court at City College, as the two 6-footers use their height and chemistry to make things difficult at the line for opposing teams.

“We’re very comfortable playing together because we know each other so well and know how to push each other,” Mayer said.

She attributes the team’s early success to the comradery between the teammates. Not only do the girls have chants and rituals on the sidelines at games, but they also enjoy spending time with each other off the court and on the weekends.

“It’s hard to win on a team with girls that don’t get along,” she said. “We have amazing chemistry and I think that’s helped us a lot.”

As a freshman, Waddill is known as a leader on the team who always tries to bring out the best in her teammates.

“Jenn is always keeping the team motivated,” said sophomore teammate Morgan Terrell. “Not only is she a great player, but she’s a great teammate.”

When asked what the key to her success has been this season, Waddill answered “my teammates.” She explained that she couldn’t play the way she does with out the great passing and setting of her team.

“We have a ton of talent on the court. It’s a total team effort,” she said.

The Vaqs’ star has been contacted by several small private schools such as Rice and Colorado University, but aspires to play at San Diego State or Long Beach State.

The Vaqueros have been a tough team to beat all season long, and with the talented Waddill leading the close group of girls, the women’s volleyball team looks to be a strong contender for a league title.