Sarah Ellen Battles, seated second from left, and Melissa-Paul; Hill, seated fourth from left, sign letters of intent to play volleyball for Wallace State Community College on Tuesday afternoon. Looking on, from left are: (seated) Donna Legg-Battles, WSCC coach Randy Daniel and Nancy Hill; (standing) Guy Battles, Noah Battles, assistant principal Bob Young, HHS volleyball coach Tanya Lybarger, Katelyn Hill and Carey Hill. | Clif Knight
Sarah Ellen Battles, seated second from left, and Melissa-Paul; Hill, seated fourth from left, sign letters of intent to play volleyball for Wallace State Community College on Tuesday afternoon. Looking on, from left are: (seated) Donna Legg-Battles, WSCC coach Randy Daniel and Nancy Hill; (standing) Guy Battles, Noah Battles, assistant principal Bob Young, HHS volleyball coach Tanya Lybarger, Katelyn Hill and Carey Hill. | Clif Knight

Archived Story

Battles, Hill sign with Wallace State

Published 12:48pm Thursday, December 12, 2013

Two senior members of Hartselle High School’s Final Four volleyball team are taking their game to the college level.

Libero Sarah Ellen Battles and setter Melissa-Paul Hill signed letters of intent to play for Wallace State Community College at a dual signing Tuesday afternoon.

The event, which was held in the school cafeteria, was attended by teammates and large a group of senior athletes. A reception followed the signing.

Both Battles and Hill are All-Area players for two years in a row. Hill was a member of the North team in the North-South All-Star Games last summer.

An honor student, Battles said Wallace State became her school of choice last summer while playing for the college’s club team.

“I like everything about the school…players, coaches and the fact that it‘s close to home,” Battles aid. “When I was offered a scholarship, I couldn’t pass it up.”

Battles said her goal is to excel at Wallace and be able to transfer to a four-year college to continue her volleyball career after two years.

In the meantime, she is looking forward to her senior year on the softball team, after completing another her final season with the basketball team.

Hill said her interest in playing volleyball at the college level really accelerated after the Lady Tigers won a state title in 2012.

“I didn’t like volleyball very much in junior high, Hill said. ”Basketball was my sport. But that changed when I was a freshman and Coach (Tanya) Lybarger told me I needed to play at the setter position. Then I really got interested in playing at the next level after our state championship run.”

Hill said she wants a career as an athletic trainer but hasn’t decided if she wanted to play volleyball at a four-year college.

As two of four seniors, Battles and Hill were part of a volleyball program that compiled a 205-87 record in four years.

“They’re great players and team leaders,” said Lybarger. “If our younger players follow their example, they will do well. It’s always exiting to see your players receive scholarship to play at the college level.”

“It’s exciting to sign two players from a winning program like Hartselle’s,” said WSCC coach Randy Daniel. They’re both good kids from good families as well as good athletes. “We’re glad to have them as part of our volleyball program.

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