Crestview’s Auer stays setting milestones

Rebels junior owns school’s career, single-season, single-game aces marks

Correspondent photo / Robert Hayes. Crestview junior Grace Auer goes for a kill last week at Campbell. Owing a slew of records already, the Rebels’ junior has been tied to the sport her entire life.

As far back as Grace Auer can recall, the sport of volleyball, the feeling of the gymnasium and the thrill of competition has been in her blood.

Of course, when her mother is her volleyball coach, it’s no surprise that her love for the game comes naturally. Now like a proficient author, Auer has been re-writing portions of the Crestview record book as a junior.

Penning your own legacy is always a monumental task.

“I remember being around the team a lot and just playing with them and making everyone smile,” Auer said. “My mom used to put me in the cart and just let me play around with the volleyballs.

“I just love the sport — it’s such a team sport, and I’m all about the team and I love playing with everyone with how much of a unit it is.”

Currently, Auer owns the career aces record with 237, while also shattering the single-season and single-game aces mark. Crestview is currently 15-0, earning a three-set sweep in all 15 victories.

Rebels coach Alisha Auer recalls a particular moment while her older daughter Brenna was still in high school.

“My team dared (Grace) to do 100 push-ups during the warmup before the game, and she did,” Alisha said. “I’m coaching my third daughter now which is really cool. I am so blessed they loved the sport. They all played soccer when they were younger and had the choice to do what they wanted to do.”

Grace’s younger sister Alaina is a freshman on the current Rebels squad.

Alisha has earned her stripes in the gym, graduating from Crestview in 1995. She eventually went on to play at Marshall University, before then working as an assistant at Walsh for four seasons. Alisha learned that making the game fun is what helps kids buy into a program.

Owning a record is such a tremendous feat for any high school athlete. Owning multiple as a junior makes the circumstance even more special.

The ace milestones reflect Grace’s versatility on the court more than anything.

“She’s a great server, she came in as a freshman serving aggressively, so that’s just kind of mounted and accumulated,” Alisha said. “It shows how hard she works. She wants to be good, she wants to be better. She knows there’s always people that are better and she strives to just get better and better every time she gets on the court.”

Despite scoring plenty of points, Grace said she enjoys setting the ball more than anything, helping her fellow teammates score and most importantly, earning a plethora of wins.

Crestview is 64-4 since Grace entered high school.

“I just love setting and giving the hitter a ball they can put away, it just makes me feel good that I can do that,” Grace said. “Setting wise, I love giving people the best sets that I can and watching them put the ball away and get a smile on their face. With hitting I love putting the ball away, it’s just so much fun, every part about volleyball.”

In addition to playing for Crestview, Grace also plays travel volleyball.

“It can be difficult at times,” she said. “Sometimes you experience a little bit of a burnout, but you just have to push through it and know that your team always has your back.”

Grace also has 1,071 career assists, 719 digs, 695 kills and a .376 hitting percentage as a setter and outside hitter.

Success, milestones and victories are always great feelings but what’s most important to Grace is who she has coaching her from the bench.

“I love it, she’s such a good coach and a very good mom too,” Grace said with a massive smile. “She gives me all the pointers that she has, and I work my best to fulfill them.”

As a former collegiate volleyball player and a coach with over 300 career wins, Alisha patrols the bench area, formulating new offensive sets while keeping her team’s laser focus sharp.

But most of all, the feeling of watching her own daughter piece together something of her own is priceless.

“We have four kids and Grace looks the most like me, so it’s funny when we go back-and-forth and feed off each other, it’s a nice thing. I’m very proud of her,” Alisha said. “It’s really cool, I’m a coach to all of them, but I’m also a mom to two of them, so it’s fun. I’m glad we’re winning, it makes everybody happy, it makes life all around good.”


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