Marquette Wire

Volleyball picks up French JUCO transfer

Geoffroy won Libero of the Year honors in 2012

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(Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics)

(Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics)

(Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics)

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Marquette volleyball bolstered its defense with the addition of transfer student Manon Geoffroy for the 2016-’17 season. Geoffroy has completed two years at San Jacinto, a junior college in Pasadena, Texas, and will have two years of athletic eligibility remaining at Marquette.

“She has a lot of great leadership traits,” said Marquette head coach Ryan Theis. “Hard work, wanting to keep teammates together – she’s really good with that – those are all things that we like a lot about her.”

Before attending San Jacinto, Geoffroy played competitive volleyball in France, her home country. Geoffroy’s team won the 2012 French AAU championship and she won Libero of the Year honors. The accolades did not stop when she came to America either; she ranked second in the country among junior college players in digs and helped guide San Jacinto to a National Junior College Athletic Association championship this past year.

Geoffroy will provide a much-needed backup for rising senior Lauren Houg, who is the team’s starting libero. It is a role that Theis thought he filled back in November with a different Texas volleyball player. Taylor Murata, a libero at Lamar High School in Arlington, Texas, committed to Marquette as part of the class of 2020 but revoked her commitment just months afterwards, citing a desire to stay closer to home. That forced Theis to look for a new player in the junior college circuit, where he noticed Geoffroy.

“She was an All-American, so we found her that way,” Theis said. “We collected video on several All-Americans, we contacted a bunch of different regions … and she came up. We liked her video the best, we went down and watched her in person, we liked her a lot and thought she’d be helpful to the program immediately.”

Theis pointed out that Geoffroy and Houg have different defensive styles. Houg’s preferred style of play is to pick her spots and let other players handle shots hit more directly to them, whereas Geoffroy is more of a “ball hawk” – someone who will try to dig anything close to her.

“She’ll just take anything she can get her hands on because that’s often the role of a libero,” Theis said of Geoffroy. “She wants to touch the first ball every time over; she likes that responsibility.”

The acquisition of Geoffroy means that Marquette will have six defensive specialists and/or liberos on the roster next year. Two of the three starters among those players, Houg and Ellen Hays, will be seniors next year, which makes Geffroy’s development a necessity.

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