December 10, 2022

A “grizzly bear.” That is how Haleigh Washington describes her coaching schedule.

“I believe what contributes to my success and talents, is that I am a really avid learner,” stated the Doherty Excessive Faculty (Colorado Springs) grad.

She already has a gold medal from the Tokyo 2020 Olympics

“Typically I am simply out of phrases. I simply cannot imagine that I had that chance to play with these girls, to be in that area,” stated Washington.

And he or she’s coaching with the nationwide group in Orange County proper now, hoping to be on the roster for the 2024 Olympic video games.

“I believe my dad form of instilled in me that there can all the time be extra. You may all the time be higher. So anytime that an important success, that I used to be so grateful for, may need occurred, I used to be all the time like, ‘okay, what’s subsequent? What extra? What extra can I try for? What extra can go for?'” stated Washington.

Washington has already completed what few athletes have. She was a two-time state volleyball participant of the 12 months and led the Spartans to a state championship and an undefeated season (29-0) in 2012. She holds the Colorado highschool file with 48 kills in a match.

She then grew to become a star at Penn State, a three-time first-team All-American, successful a nationwide title in 2014, earlier than turning into a member of Staff USA volleyball for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, serving to the People win their first gold medal within the sport.

For Haleigh, who identifies as a queer black lady, her accomplishments do really feel bigger than herself.

“I really feel very honored and blessed that I can symbolize this demographic and be like ‘hey, I do know there’s the hardships. I do know what you are going via. I understand how onerous it’s to be authentically your self. I understand how onerous it’s to really feel accepted. However regardless of all that, you could be so profitable,” she stated.

“Pursuing a ardour will tear you to items. It is one of many hardest issues you are going to do, however if you get there, if you hit that, that candy spot, you are reminded to why you sludged via the grit and the grime,” stated Washington.

Washington is at the moment prepping for the world championships in Amsterdam that begin on the finish of September.

This summer season is the 50th anniversary of Title 9. The legislation prohibited sex-based discrimination in faculties, guaranteeing a stage enjoying area for feminine athletics for the primary time in our nation’s historical past.

To have fun the anniversary, KRDO’s Josh Helmuth is showcasing 9 of essentially the most outstanding feminine athletes to come back out of southern Colorado.

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