If you’ve ever been to Moby Arena during a CSU volleyball game, you’ve witnessed a few vicious spikes from the likes of Jasmine Hanna, Kelsey Snider or Marlee Reynolds.
They soar up to the net almost in slow motion, until suddenly a release triggers time to speed up faster than it was before, and the ball has already hit the court and bounced out of play before you even blink.
But behind those violent kills is a precise, lofty set from the finger tips of Deedra Foss, the Rams’ senior setter from McKenna, Washington. Of Colorado State’s 991 assists this season, 824 are credited to Foss, and it’s clear that she is the backbone of this highly powered offense.
Foss came to CSU in 2009, before spending her freshman year as a redshirt.
From there, she’s gone nowhere but up.
In 2011, she was awarded the Mountain West Newcomer of the Year award and in 2012 she made the All-Mountain West team and did so again the following year. In 2013, Foss was an honorable mention All-American, as well as the Mountain West Setter of the Year.
This year, she will likely be showered with more accolades. Foss has contributed a lot to the CSU program over the past four years, but she also credits her teammates and head coach Tom Hilbert for her development and success.
“When I came here on my visit I really loved Tom and the team. They all really accepted me,” Foss said. “One thing that really got me, because I’m from Washington, was when Tom told me it’s 300 days of sunshine here.”
Foss is in the home stretch of her final season as a CSU Ram, but she won’t soon forget the matches she’s played at Moby Arena. She’s been a part of the program’s winning culture for five years now, and in her senior season she has gotten to experience record-breaking crowds on her home court.
“Moby is way different, and that’s something I didn’t realize until I got here,” Foss said. “You go to other schools and it’s like a high school gym, and then you come here and we get a couple thousand people. The atmosphere here is like nothing you’ve ever experienced.”
A jack-of-all-trades, Foss has obtained a black belt in karate, two high school letters in water polo and of course, a long list of volleyball achievements. Her competitive spirit sets the tone for the team as a whole, and she relishes in the culture her team thrives on.
“I think last year really set the standard for us. We went undefeated for 28 games and made CSU history, and this year we’re 22-1. The fact that I’ve been on this team two times when we’ve done something like that is awesome,” Foss said.
The senior has certainly set a standard of her own with respect to the setter position. Crystal Young, a junior from Blinn Junior College, will have some big shoes to fill next year. But for now, Foss and the No. 7 Rams will continue their hunt for another Mountain West title and then on to the NCAA Tournament.
“I think I’ve accomplished more than I could’ve dreamed of in my time here,” Foss said. “Being ranked sixth and seventh in the nation was something I’ve always wanted and to be, and doing it in my last season here is pretty awesome.”
Collegian Assistant Sports Editor Zac Koch can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @zactkoch.