Every year, at this time of year, I take a trip down memory lane. Give me this moment! I don’t know if you know this but Amarillo has some great volleyball players. We do!
This time of year is the Colorado Crossroad’s Classic in Denver! I always compared it to the Super Bowl of Volleyball. You could make it or break it in Denver! If you have been to their Convention Center you will recognize this!
credit: Heather Woolley
Such a fabulous tournament that is played at the Denver Convention Center. Just walking in is overwhelming! Courts all around you! The best volleyball players are in that room!
 Here I am with my daughter at the beginning of the Colorado tournament years ago.
credit: Melissa Bartlett, TSM
This weekend was that exact tournament and I got to watch a friend of mine’s daughter play. Even if it was through Facebook!
Heather Woolley, a co-worker of mine back in the day at Corporate Systems. I remember standing in her doorway talking about our kids. That is how a lot of us bond. My daughter was about 4 or 5...her’s was a newborn.
Here we are now in 2019! Heather’s daughter is in Denver. I kept up with her team! Did I mention that Amarillo has some fabulous volleyball players? Oh we do.
Denver’s Crossroad’s Classic starts with many teams! This year there are 117 teams in the 17-year-old age division! It’s a 3-day tournament. You start on Friday....pool play. That day makes or breaks where you play in the bracket.
Oh let me tell you about Amarillo Elite Volleyball 17-1. Just so you know a "1" team means that it is a National Team (the intentions are that the team makes it to Nationals)
My daughter played Club Volleyball since the 3rd grade! I remember her having to try out for the first time ever! She made the 12-1 team (yep National’s). The only thing that kept that team from making Nationals in Florida was the H1N1 Flu outbreak that year! Yep, they canceled Regional's and National's that year!
So I live vicariously through my friends who now have kids playing. That brings me back to Heather and her daughter, Jaedyn!
Watching her success at Amarillo High has been fantastic! Watching them this weekend in Denver was something else! So fantastic!
Starting with 117 teams in their age group! Showing up to play is a must! Oh and they did.
“We won first match in Gold!! Now AEV 17-1 Nationals are in the Elite 8 at Colorado Crossroads!! They battled 15-25, 26-24, then dominated third set 15-7!! We play again at 10 mountain time!!! #elite8 #AEV #xr2019 #goingforgold”
This is fantastic! Again out of 117 teams they are in the Elite 8! I can’t wrap my mind around it! Wow!
I have to keep watching! My anticipation is growing!
Then I see this!
credit: Heather Woolley
Woah! Out of 117 teams in their age group! Oh and the best of the best in Denver! This team is IT!
Regardless of whether they win or not. A team from Amarillo making it this high. Let me tell you is great! I am proud of this team!
I messaged Heather! I wanted to know if I could write and use her photos for this. She approved.
I was even more invested! This team was worth it! Started with 117 teams in the 17 year old group! Remember that!
credit: Heather Woolley
They finished 3rd! I can only tip my hat and be so impressed! Amarillo has some great volleyball players and coaches but 3rd in Denver! Really! Such an accomplishment!
credit: Heather Woolley