BYU Signs Seven Newcomers
PROVO, Utah - Head coach Heather Olmstead and the BYU women's volleyball program have announced the addition of seven signees to the program.
Joining the Cougars in 2019 are Erin Anderson, Morgan Bower, Abbey Dayton, Kate Grimmer, Morgan Johnson, Grace Wee and Callie Whitney.
Anderson, a 6-2 outside hitter from Corona, Calif., is a PrepVolleyball Senior Ace who was named to the USA Volleyball Girls’ Junior National Championships All-Tournament Team last year. A multi-year All-CIF selection, Anderson holds her school record for most kills in a season.
A 5-foot-8 libero from Nampa, Idaho, Bower is an Under Armour and PrepVolleyball High School All-American who holds her school record for career digs. A third-generation BYU student-athlete whose mother, Caroline, played volleyball and father, Danny, played basketball for the Cougars, Bower graduated early and joined the Cougars in January.
Dayton is a 6-foot-1 outside hitter from Ladera Ranch, California. The league MVP her senior season after helping San Juan Hills High School to a fourth-straight league title, Dayton is an All-CIF, All-State, All-Orange County and All-League selection.
A 2018 Under Armour High School All-American, Grimmer was named the No. 22 senior in the country by PrepVolleyball. A 6-foot-1 opposite hitter, she is a 6A All-State selection and four-time All-Region honoree out of Queen Creek, Arizona.
Johnson was first-team All-Southwestern League, All-Region and All-Area out of Temecula, California. A 5-foot-11 outside hitter, Johnson is the daughter of James, a former All-WAC offensive lineman at BYU, and Gale Oborn Johnson, a former All-American outside hitter for the Cougars.
Wee, a 5-foot-6 defensive specialist, led ‘Iolani High School to state championships in 2016 and 2018. She is also an All-Hawaii and Honolulu Star Advertiser Fab 15 honoree.
A transfer from Salt Lake Community College, Whitney also joined the Cougars in January. A native of South Jordan, Utah, Whitney is a 5-foot-8 defensive specialist who was a two-time All-Region and two-time Academic All-American at SLCC. Two of her brothers, Brock and Derrick, played baseball at BYU.
6-2, OH, Corona, Calif.
Santiago HS, Forza1 North
- Parents are Kendell and Michelle
- PrepVolleyball No. 89 Senior Aces
- USA Volleyball Junior National Championships All-Tournament Team
- Three-time All-League
- Two-time All-CIF Southern Section
- 2017 Inland Sports Player of the Year
- 2018 All-League MVP
- 2018 CIF Southern Section Division II Player of the Year
- 2018 SoCal All-Varsity Team
- Four-time League Champions
- Holds Santiago High School season kills record
- Four-time Principal’s Gold Honor Roll student
- Played club for the Mavericks and Forza1 North
- Has watched every season of Vampire Diaries five times
Olmstead’s thoughts on Anderson: “Erin is a versatile player who has played every position across the net. She is a great jumper with high contact and loves to work the court attacking both corners. Erin’s length and eye work will help her become a great blocker at the next level. I love Erin’s drive to be great; it has helped her get better each year both physically and mentally.”
5-8, Libero, Nampa, Idaho
Skyview HS, Idaho Crush
- Parents are Danny and Caroline
- Mother was an outside hitter at BYU (1996-99) and father was a shooting guard on the men’s basketball team for the Cougars (1998-99). Grandfather, Wayne, played also played fullback at BYU (1970-73)
- Won back-to-back 4A Idaho State Championships and placed second twice
- Two-time PrepVolleyball All-American
- AVCA All-American Second Team
- 2018 Idaho Press Tribune Volleyball Athlete of the Year
- Four-time All-State
- Holds Skyview High School career digs record
- Helped 16U team to top-10 finish at USAV Junior Olympics after becoming the first team from Idaho to qualify for the event
- Oldest of seven girls (mother was pregnant with her playing in the NCAA Tournament for BYU)
- Enjoys swan hunting on the Great Salt Lake; considers herself one of the best young non-professional female fly fishing guides in southern Idaho
Olmstead’s thoughts on Bower: “Morgan is a fiery, competitive defender who isn’t afraid to get on the floor. She loves volleyball, competing, and BYU. She’s following in the footsteps of her parents who are BYU student-athlete alumni. She enrolled early and is already making an impact on our team.”
6-1, OH, Ladera Ranch, Calif.
San Juan Hills HS, A4
- Parents are Adam and Christy
- Two-time All-league First Team
- 2018 League MVP
- All-Orange County First Team
- All-CIF Southern Section First Team
- All-State Second Team
- Four-time league champion
- Four-time Scholar Athlete
- Played club with Laguna Beach VBC, T-Street and A4 17's and 18's
- Enjoys skiing, waterskiing and Chick-fil-A and has a phobia of applesauce
Olmstead’s thoughts on Dayton: “Abbey is a six-rotation outside hitter with a sound knowledge of the game. She loves to score and sees the court well. Abbey plays with a passion that’s contagious and I know she’ll have a positive impact in our gym.”
6-1, OPP, Queen Creek, Ariz.
Queen Creek HS, Arizona Storm
- Parents are Randy and Michelle
- Mother played volleyball at Snow College (Utah)
- 2018 Under Armour High School All-America Second Team
- PrepVolleyball No. 22 Senior Ace
- 6A All-State
- Three-time MVP
- Four-time All-Region
- 5A State Finalist
- 5A Region MVP
- 2015 National Club Champions
- Has watched Pride and Prejudice more than 30 times
Olmstead’s thoughts on Grimmer: “Kate is a six-rotation lefty with a knack for scoring on the right side. She is fun to watch and is full of energy every play. Kate has improved from year to year and does a great job making her teammates better. What separates Kate from others is her competitive drive and will to win.”
5-11, OH, Temecula, Calif.
Chaparral HS, Forza1
- Parents are James and Gale
- Mother was an All-American volleyball player at BYU (1993-96) and father was an All-WAC offensive lineman for the Cougars (1992-96)
- All-Southwestern League First Team
- All-Region First Team
- All-Area First Team
- MVP of the Hemet Tourney
- Principal’s Honor Roll and Academic All-Conference
- Has three sisters, including a twin
Olmstead’s thoughts on Johnson: “Morgan has a great arm and ability to score. She comes from an athletic family as both her parents are BYU student-athlete alumni. I look forward to having her on the team and can’t wait to see the mark she’ll leave on our program.”
5-6, Libero/DS, Kaneohe, Hawaii
‘Iolani HS, Ku’ikahi
- Parents are Doug and Ann
- 2016 & 2018 State Champions
- All-Hawaii Division I Second Team
- 2018 Honolulu Star Advertiser Fab 15
- Hawaii State All-Tournament Team
- Headmaster’s List, Top Scholar and a member of the Chinese National Honor Society
- Played club ball for Na Keiki Mauloa, Spike and Serve and Ku’ikahi
- Binge watched the Harry Potter Series in one day; ate her first salad at age 17
Olmstead’s thoughts on Wee: “Grace is a great defender and passer who will help improve our back row. She prepped at ‘Iolani High School where she played competitive volleyball and won the Hawaii state championship last year. We are excited to have her scrappy play in our gym.”
5-8, DS, South Jordan, Utah
Salt Lake CC, Club Utah
- Parents are Dallas and Allison
- Brothers Brock (2009, 12-14) and Derrick (2015) played baseball at BYU
- Two-time All-Region 18
- Five-time SWAC Defensive Player of the Week
- 2017 SWAC Champions
- Two-time NJCAA All-Academic
- Had 440 digs in 2018 and 230 in 2017
- Four-year Honor Roll member in high school
- 2016 AAU National Champions
- 2016 AAU Academic All-American
- Once ate two Cafe Rio burritos in one sitting; lost a front tooth after hitting her mouth on a merry-go-round bar
Olmstead’s thoughts on Whitney: “Callie comes to us from SLCC where she had a very successful career as a libero. We are excited to have Callie join us to train this semester and love the experience and knowledge she brings with her from junior college.”
BYU women’s volleyball season tickets for the upcoming 2023 campaign will go on sale beginning Wednesday, July 26.