Borum leaves her mark on Penguins’ program
Fifth-year senior becomes the only active D-I player with 1,000 kills, assists, digs
Having a trio of statistics hit the four-digit mark in volleyball is more reflective of the jack-of-all-trades character of a six-rotation player more than anything.
Youngstown State’s Josi Borum recently became the only active Division I player in the country to record at least 1,000 career kills, assists and digs.
“It is surreal, it’s really exciting, and I’m glad I was able to do it with the help of my teammates and everything like that. I just think it’s really awesome that I was able to do it,” Borum said. “That extra year definitely gave me more of a push to kinda get that record, if I didn’t have that, I wouldn’t have got it. But it really gave me the opportunity to come back and play one more year, and go back to school and do all of that.”
Borum is currently using her fifth year that was granted to college athletes due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a right-side hitter and a setter, Borum has to understand the flow of a match from all perspectives.
“It requires a lot of versatility. I play six rotation, so I’m kinda doing it all. I’m digging, I’m setting, and I’m hitting the ball,” Borum said. “You have to be disciplined to dig, and then attacking also comes into play with that, so I think that’s the word I would use to describe that.”
Borum transferred into the Penguins’ program from Chicago State after playing for the Cougars during her freshman campaign in 2019. Just a few months after arriving in Youngstown, the pandemic hit. When it was time for volleyball to resume, YSU coach Aline Scott knew Borum would have a large impact on the program.
“Somehow you have to keep people on the bench, if this person doesn’t do well, I put (them) there. But in her case, she’s just so far above in terms of her dedication and her effort,” Scott said of Borum. “Her communication — just all the intangibles — it’s hard to keep her off the court.
“I knew when she committed here that she would basically be the face of the program. We were really happy when she decided to come and it showed. She’s really helped us change the culture and move this program forward. Her legacy is going to stick around.”
Borum comes from a volleyball-rich family, and she first began to play the sport when she was eight-years old. Her older sister, Jailyn, played at Illinois-Springfield, while her younger sisters Bree (Loyola Chicago) and Brooklyn (Virginia) compete at the collegiate level, as well.
“I hope I’m doing them proud,” Borum said. “It’s really fun when they’re able to cheer on my success with me. Knowing that I have the support from them is all I need in life.”
YSU currently sits with an overall record of 6-11 and are 1-5 in Horizon League play.
With plenty of league contests remaining and a regular season slate that doesn’t conclude until Nov. 10, Borum is trying to make the most of her final go-around with the Penguins.
“(YSU has) definitely been on the rise since I’ve been here, and the classes that keep coming in keep getting better and pushing us a lot more. I think that’s how it’s going to continue even after I’m gone,” Borum said. “There are aspects that I’m able to do that not many people are in, and I’m in there for six rotations, so I feel like I’m helping lead where we need to be and continuing that.”
Scott added, “I think we’ve done a good job here recruiting the type of people that I think can move this program forward. She’s got all the other things in terms of her values and just who she is as a person, and I think that’s what makes her great.”