Volleyball Inks Second Signee
April 22, 2003
MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- - The University of Memphis volleyball head coach Carrie Yerty announced the signing of Christen Clayton from Houston, Texas, to a National Letter of Intent, Tuesday.
A 5-8 outside hitter/defensive specialist from Clear Lake High School in Houston, Clayton was a two-year letterwinner at Clear Lake High School. She was named the Clear Lake Defensive Player of the Year in 2001 and was top 10 in the Houston area for digs that same season. She was also a first team All-District honoree as a junior. Under head coach Nicole Blakeman, Clear Lake finished as the 24 5A District runners-up in 2002, finishing with a 19-14 overall record.
"Christen is a player who has the ability to make an immediate impact as a libero or defensive specialist for us," Yerty said. "She will compete with Lauren Berg for time at the libero position because she is a very experienced passer. She is also the type of person who is very positive and who does not take any opportunities for granted and works hard everyday."
Clayton also plays club volleyball under coaches Jerry Hulla and Jeff Ham on the South Shore Mizuno squad that is ranked 14th in the state of Texas by lonestarvolleyball.com. The 5-8 senior has also played club basketball and softball, playing two years as a point guard and wing with the basketball team and three years as a catcher and outfielder for softball.
Clayton is a player who is very familiar to one Tiger volleyball member, as she and current freshman Kristen Hardee (Sante Fe, Texas/Sante Fe) are friends from their prep and club playing days.
"Christen and Kristen are two very similar personalities," Yerty said. "Christen is a really hard worker and is a glass is half full kind of person."
Outside of athletics, Clayton has a 3.3 GPA and is a volunteer staff member with the Silver Dollar Ball, a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. She was also the treasurer for the Clear Lake Christmas Committee. Clayton is considering majoring in business when she starts at Memphis in the fall.
The daughter of John and Brenda Clayton, Christen has also played club volleyball with the Gulf Coast A Team and the Bay Area Juniors. She was also selected to the Tour of Texas Spring 2002.
Clayton becomes the second signee for Yerty in the spring signing period, joining Melissa Nance. That duo will join setter Hristina Stancheva in the fall of 2003. Stancheva joined the Tigers in January at the semester break.