Close-knitted squad suits Ashlie McWee

Ashlie McWee is entering her fifth year with the Cyclones and thinks this is year Iowa State will start to create a volleyball buzz.

This summer the ISU volleyball squad spent a lot of time together, more than they ever had before – and that's saying a lot on this close-knitted team.


"Most of our team was here all over the summer," senior setter Amanda Craig said. "We were really serious in the weight room all of our maxes went up and we were coming in twice a week in the summer and playing as a team. We did a lot of work over the summer more than we've ever done before, so hopefully that will pay off."


Middle hitter Ashlie McWee can attest to that – she's entering her fifth season with the Cyclones.


"We play in one of the best conferences in the country and we go up against strong athletes from Nebraska and Texas," McWee said. "[So] basically we just worked a lot on our upper body strength."


McWee missed the last 21 matches of her initial freshman year with a stress fracture in her foot; she had surgery on her shoulder this summer but is ready to get going.


"I'm very fortunate to be able to have a fifth year," McWee said. "I'm very excited to be playing under Christy [Johnson] and [to be here] for my senior year."


With Johnson taking over the program last winter, McWee said everybody became familiar during the spring months.


"I think we've done fairly well," McWee said. "It was a smooth transition coming in for the team. This spring we got to find out what her expectations were for us and the goals for our program."


Hailing from Aurora, Colo., McWee is one of the best blockers in ISU history. She has 239 career block assists, ranking eighth all-time.


McWee played on the Colorado club circuit and got letters from other colleges, but Iowa State recruited her the hardest.


"I wanted to get out of state and Iowa isn't too far," McWee said. "I like Ames, it's a college town and I stay out of trouble."


McWee said she feels the squad is the closest she's seen in her five years here and that should do nothing but aide the Cyclones for years to come.


"I feel this is the season we will put Iowa State out there and create a buzz for our program," McWee said. "I feel that once we build more consistency we will be a top team in our conference."

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